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Cochrane v. Deener (94 U.S. 780, 1877)

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[PROCESS] {1} A process may be patentable irrespective of the particular form of the instrumentalities used. If one of the steps of a process be that a certain substance is to be reduced to a powder, it may not be at all material what instrument or machinery is used to effect that object, whether a hammer, a pestle and mortar, or a mill. Either may be pointed out, but if the patent is not confined to that particular tool or machine, the use of the other would be an infringement, the general process being the same.

[USEFUL] {2} A process is a mode of treatment of certain materials to produce a given result. It is not an act or series of acts, performed upon the subject matter to be transformed and reduced to a different state or thing. If new and useful, it is just as patentable as a piece of machinery. In the language of the patent law, it is an art.

[PROCESS] {3} The machinery pointed out as suitable to perform the process may or may not be new or patentable, whilst the process itself may be altogether new and produce an entirely new result. The process requires that certain things should be done with certain substances and in a certain order, but the tools to be used in doing this may be of secondary consequence.

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