On Nov. 28, a showdown took place before the U.S. Supreme Court over the point at which an invention is obvious — and therefore unpatentable.

On one side stood KSR International Co. and its camp of software, information technology and electronic companies, accompanied by the U.S. solicitor general. On the other stood Teleflex Inc. and its allies in the biotech, chemical and pharmaceutical industries, as well as the American Bar Association.

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