As you read the Supreme Court’s ruling from yesterday in Alice Corp v CLS Bank your first response might be, what took them so long? In finding that the patent claims at issue were ineligible the nine Justices (who issued a unanimous opinion) stuck tightly to their brief, reemphasised the rules they laid down in two previous cases – Bilski and Mayo – and resisted the temptation to rule aggressively against software or business method patents.

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