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Inventions: Patents

Impact of Intellectual Property Laws

"Perpetual technological innovation is so much a part of contemporary life that it is difficult even to imagine the world without it. Before the eighteenth century, inventions were either created by those wealthy enough to do so as a leisure activity (or to patronize artisans to do so on their behalf), or they were kept secret for as long as possible. Human character was changed, and changed forever, by Britain's insistence that ideas were a kind of property. For while the laws of nature place severe limits on the total amount of gold, or land... there are no constraints at all on the number of potentially valuable ideas."

- from The Most Powerful Idea in the World by William Rosen

Patents and Trademarks Research Guide

Linda Hall Library participates in the Patent and Trademark Resource Center (PTRC) Program. The PTRC program is administered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

To learn more about this service, or find additional intellectual property resources, visit Linda Hall's Patents and Trademarks Research Guide.

Historical Review of Patents

Books on Patents