As I think I have mentioned before, I occasionally do presentations based on "Lowering the Bar" for law firms, in-house legal departments, bar associations, and/or anybody else who might be interested. I gave one of these at Microsoft on October 22, and, as nothing especially dangerous was thrown at me during the presentation, I think it went reasonably well. (This seemed to go much better than my last presentation, maybe because I remembered to wear pants this time.) I talked about odd patents, unusual consumer-law cases and ridiculous warnings. So that this post has some purpose other than self-promotion, here's one of the patents we discussed today:
This is Patent No. 7,465,235, "Combined Human Catapult and Safety Landing Apparatus." Catapult rider (24) is propelled by arm (34), driven by falling counterweight (16), into air (30). I think. Basically, this is for people who like the idea of being a human cannonball, but would prefer something significantly more dangerous. (I'm not an IP attorney, but I did read through this several times and am not sure how the "safety landing apparatus" works. Please do not construct and/or use Human Catapult without a full understanding of this feature.)
If you would be interested in having me speak to your group, and you think they would also be interested in hearing it, please let me know. Thanks again to Microsoft.