Any technical contribution, discovery, process, method, use, design, improvement, modification or combinations thereof, conceived of and reduced to practice during the course of research carried out for or at the University. Includes computer software, novel machines, devices, compositions of matter (compounds, mixtures, genetically engineered cells, plants or animals), genetic forms, mask works, production processes, production methods, plant varieties, etc. that did not previously exist.
For an invention to qualify for a U.S. patent it must be novel, non-obvious, and useful. It can be a device, a manufacturable article, a machine, a composition of matter, a process or method, or a new, useful improvement.