Saturday, October 12, 2002

The US Patent Office has been issuing a lot of bad patents. Most of the weird ones are from crackpot inventors, but even IBM does kooky patents. Check out US Patent 6,329,919, issued Dec. 2001, for using restrooms on a first-come, first-served basis. It claims:
What is claimed is:
1. A method of providing reservations for restroom use, comprising: receiving a reservation request from a user; and notifying the user when the restroom is available for his or her use.

There are 4 inventors, and 64 claims. It also claims letting airline passengers use the restroom in the order of ticket price, so first class passengers could use it first.

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