12 Oct Paulo the Inventor ….
The Challenges of Being an Independent Inventor
“Providing support to a person is not the same as doing business with them”
Be an inventor is not for everyone. An invention has so many filters by which spending that generate long periods of discovery, until the innovation itself. Confidence is the key, but also the relevance of the creation. Every person, when creating something, must think: “Does this really save time and money? No longer exists? Really work or is it really necessary? Applies to a market big enough? Does this market want to pay the same I am thinking to ask? “.
Being an inventor, besides vocation, requires at least a little knowledge in design, prototyping, patents, materials analysis, production, import/export, cost analysis, marketing, money management, business management, contract law… It also requires to be prepared for get responses like: “we have no capital “,” we have our own projects “, “the crisis is ugly “,”we invest only in short-term”, “we do not work with this product line “,” we don’t work with patent licensing “,”we don’t want to have to get customers, suppliers, for this product, “” we work only on demand “, and so on.
In Brazil there is no program to support, in the exact sense of this word, the independent inventor with no company incorporated, with resources so that he can conduct a study of technical and economic feasibility of its design and development of a physical prototype. Some people always suggest institutions such as “Sebrae” (Brazilian Service of Support for Micro and Small Enterprises), “Finep” (Finance Company Of Studies and Projects) and State Foundations of Support Teaching and Research.
The error: This support programs are geared only to companies, legal entities with corporate, as if focus should be only on companies and not in innovation and quality of the project that – born or not within an enterprise – can help people and bring much income tax to the country thanks to the royalties that the product created and screened with the patent may generate.
And when some of these institutions come to “support” the independent inventor, if you probe the program, it is not a question of support at all, but rather a business like any other – and the one of the worst for the independent inventor. Example: there are foundations that support you if they think your invention has a good market potential, so they shoulder the costs of filing of the patent application and the patent administration, paying the annuities that are around U$ 25.00 USD or U$ 35.00 per year, until the letter patent is granted (after the letters patent are granted, annuities increased progressively each year!).
In exchange for paying these service fees charged by INPI (National Institute of Industrial Property), foundations of “support” usually claim the patent co-ownership and commercial participation rights about your project. In other words, they invest peanuts in your project, usually do not help you to promote it, usually do not help you in an eventual negotiation; do not help you with prototype developing, either doing a commercial feasibility study, not having had no involvement in the conception of the idea.
But if your invention miraculously generate heavy royalties thanks to your heroic efforts, they get “a good slice of the cake”. Well hard to understand where the word “support” fits on that handling. Providing support to a person is not the same as doing business with them, but in Brazil this is properly mixed.
It’s strange, but here’s the scenario: according to the World Intellectual Property Organisation, more than 60% of everything that has been invented or perfected in the world to date was from independent inventors. Other estimates suggest that fewer than 3% of everything invented in the world can reach the market. In Brazil, there is no concern about a good idea coming from anonymous individuals. If you’re not tied to a Research Centre, University or any other private company, you will not receive a penny from the Government and will have to walk a lonely road, gritty and almost always time-consuming to find – if you find – a partner for your project.
This makes me intimidated? No way! Passion, perseverance and continuous learning speak louder! Working as an inventor as about 4 years, I have, so far, 4 patents deposited in INPI available for licensing.
They are (well summarized):
Traffic Cooperation System
Electronic gadgets of instant communication to alert, with short and objective sentences, any identifiable problem or situation in a vehicle or on the roads. Communication is done with other users who have the device, which does not depend on to internet, whose signal is bad in certain locations and in which the exchange of signs and gestures between drivers is inaccurate.
Examples of messages: “light burned brake”, “flat tire”, “light defendant burned”, “emergency”, “sick person in the car”, “accident / animal / slip, fires, heavy rain ahead”, etc. It will also enable communication between government agencies and drivers, education campaigns in traffic … If autonomous cars are the future , the Gannam Communicator is the present! Its commercial implementation is easier, widely accessible, and low manufacturing cost. And it will have several other applications.
Here it’s a cool video in which I talk about it in Portuguese language: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rjdFLuKieqQ
Side Sensor to Protect Wheels and Tires along the curb
A sensor that warns the driver when its is close to bump to the tire or wheel with the curb, in any type of movement (with and without reverse gear). This product is a “hand on the wheel.” Much simpler and cheaper than complex and expensive projects, such as “Park Assist”, from VW, and “Intellisafe”, from Volvo, and it meets a need more fully, compared with electric mirrors “tilt down” type. You do not need a “car-robot” to protect your car during parking maneuvers; you can do it the same way and in a much simpler and cheaper way.
See a video of the proof of concept completed in Arduino: http://cl.ly/1a2b1F37113P?_ga=1.39114144.2010131969.1431280954
Nails Protector for People with Onychophagia (habit of biting your nails)
It’s a film that coats the nails user’s in an elegant and discreet manner, without causing any discomfort because it only covers the nails without losing the sensitivity of the fingers and can be used by men, women and children. According to scientific estimates, 19 % to 45 % of the population, ranging according to age, are carriers of this habit.
Here it’s a cool video in Portuguese language in which you can know better the product:
Sandpaper Nails Three in One
It is a unique product whose end is rounded and thin. Its functions consist of a part to shine and one for sanding the surface of the nails. Among the tips in this cable sandpaper, there is a circular surface to sand the edge of the nail with varying degrees of harshness – thickness on its circumference, according to user preference. Its anatomical shape prevents scrubs to the skin next to the cuticle.
Here it’s a cool video in Portuguese language in which you can know better the product: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNunGepyud8
But what advantages a business owner or an investor would have to invest in a patent-protected product created by an independent inventor?
The lack of knowledge of new products and the benefits of exploiting a patent applied for an inventor is a kind of ignorance that costs the trade and industry million dollars annually. When the idea of the inventor proves to be feasible, it is very cheap and profitable to the entrepreneur/investor be a partner with the inventor, especially if we take into account the originality of design and exclusivity of production and marketing, being competition-free for up to 20 years. The businessman also have appreciation of the intangible assets of its company, value-added and able to wipe the legal costs of patent management, and R & D.
About the Author: Paulo Gannam has degree in journalism from the Taubaté University, São Paulo State, and is an expert in addiction at the Sao Paulo University. Already had some work in these areas ( press relations, assist in recovery center of drug addicts and then census supervisor at IBGE- Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics ), but what, in the last for years , has given him professional pleasure is the creation, the patent application , negotiation and search for marketing products on the market through partnerships with established companies . Today 70 % of his work is focused on creating and developing new products and its presentation to companies. The remaining 30% works with property management.
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