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www.ceramics.org | American Ceramic Society Bulletin, Vol. 93, No. 328Patent law fundamentals for innovators in the ceramic and glass industryBy Steve RitcheyPart one of a two-part series presents the importance of patents to companies and the requirements that must be met before patents are granted.Patents are an important class of asset for any company. For a start-up company, its patent portfolio may be its most important asset. Despite their impor-tance, patents and the surrounding law may not be well understood by researchers and management. Therefore, they risk mak-ing decisions or taking actions that could negatively impact their ability to pursue and obtain patent protection for their inventions. The best way for a company to avoid costly mistakes at a critical juncture is to become better informed about the patent process and work closely with a patent attorney at all stages of an invention.Because of the significant changes wrought by the recent America Invents Act (AIA), it ...