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6.901 / 3.172 / 16.652 / 6.931 Inventions and Patents, Fall 2003

Thomas Edison's patent application from 1879.
Thomas Edison's patent application for an "Improvement in Electric Lamps," November 1, 1879. (Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration.)

Highlights of this Course

This course site features a downloadable textbook on inventions and patents, Create or Perish, written by the course instructor, Dr. Robert Rines, who has been inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame.

Course Description

This course explores current research concerning patent law and its role in the rapidly changing world of high technology. It is offered in the fall semester as an undergraduate course (6.901) and in the spring semester as a graduate course (6.931). The content for both courses is largely overlapping, and is presented together on this site.


Dr. Robert Rines

Course Meeting Times

One session / week
3 hours / session


Undergraduate / Graduate


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