You know, invention is the mother of necessity (or laziness in my case). Some people aren’t natural inventors others have been trying to invent gadgets almost their whole life. Moms are some of the greatest inventors ever, because through motherhood we learn to become creative problem solvers.
When you are at the idea stage of your invention the thought of taking your invention public and even to the market is extremely exciting and overwhelming. At this stage of your invention, I highly recommend making your biggest investment in a notebook. Yup, a notebook whose pages are not easily removed, because this notebook will become your bible, it is also the single most important business tool recommended by the US Patents and Trademark office (www.uspto.gov).
So how should you use your notebook. Well, first of all you should add dates and times to your entries. You should record all conversations in your notebook, this record will validate your progress, if you run into any problems or discrepancies (like someone trying to steal your idea).
Plus, if someone out there in this big world is working independently of you on a similar idea, you should know that patents are granted to “the person who is most actively developing the project”. This is supported by your notebook.
Your notebook is multipurpose, it serves as legal documentation and it also helps you measure your progress and hard work.
There are key items you should include in your notebook. You should start by describing your idea, here are a few questions you might want to answer in your notebook.
* What is your idea? Put it in your own words
* How did you come up with it? Here you should describe what events made you decide to come up with your invention
* What does it look like? Describe it in word and in drawings, because a drawing says a million word, and if you decide to apply for a provisional patent or full patent you will need drawings.
* How does it work? this should be written as if you were explaining it to someone else.
* What problem does it solve? Because every invention solves some type of problem, describe what problem your invention solves. For instance, my instant eye shadow, helped women who have a hard time color coordinating their eyeshadow.
* What do you call your idea? Here you can write down potential names for your product.
Having this information written down and keeping good records will definitely help you in the patent process. If you have multiple ideas, you should keep one notebook per idea.