Artificial intelligence has myriad use cases, but it turns out inventing devices isn't one of them -- at least in the eyes of the US Patent and Trademark Office. The agency issued a decision on two patent applications for devices created by an AI system, determining that only humans can legally be credited as inventors.
The items in question -- an emergency flashlight and a shape-shifting drink container -- were the brainchildren of a system called DABUS. The Artificial Inventor Project filed the applications last year on behalf of the AI’s creator, Stephen Thaler. AIP lawyers argued that, since Thaler didn't have any expertise in either of those types of products and couldn't have come up with them by himself, DABUS should be the credited inventor.