Triton Tech of TX, LLC v. Nintendo of Am, Inc., No. 13-1476 (Fed. Cir. 2014)Annotate this Case
Triton sued Nintendo alleging that the Wii Remote™ used in combination with an accessory infringes the 181 patent, which covers a computer input device. It discloses that a user can communicate with a computer by moving the device in three dimensions. The device sends commands to the computer based on its three-dimensional position, orientation, and motion. In the preferred embodiment, its components include three accelerometers and three rotational rate sensors for measuring linear acceleration along, and rotational velocity about, three orthogonal axes. This embodiment also includes a conventional microprocessor that is programmed to periodically read and numerically integrate over time digitized acceleration and rotational rate values to calculate the position, orientation, and motion values for the input device. The patent does not further explain how the numerical integration is performed, only that it is performed in a “conventional manner.” Each claim recites an “integrator means.” The district court held that this term rendered the claims indefinite, holding that the corresponding structure for performing the recited integrating function was a “conventional microprocessor having a suitably programmed read-only memory.” It found that the patent did not disclose any algorithm for performing the recited integrating function, stating that the patent broadly discloses using “numerical integration,” but that this alone was not a sufficient disclosure because “‘[n]umerical integration’ ... is not a single algorithm, but rather a whole class of algorithms that can be used to calculate definite integrals. The Federal Circuit affirmed.