Fun & Games

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LEGO minifig patent from 1979! [via @grantimahara]

Update: A reader writes in with this clarification:

Its not a patent but a design, in the legal sense (and practical). The difference is subtle, a patent is protects something like an apparatus (thing), a method of doing this apparatus and possibly how to operate said apparatus (let’s stay away of medical/chemical patents for now). Unless there’s a “technical effect” you cannot have a patent. A Design protects a shape/form of a product, toys usually fall under this class. Things get interesting when the shape has a technical effect (i.e. providing better grip in a hand mixer) then you might actually be able to get a patent on a design.

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Becky Stern is a Content Creator at Autodesk/Instructables, and part time faculty at New York’s School of Visual Arts Products of Design grad program. Making and sharing are her two biggest passions, and she's created hundreds of free online DIY tutorials and videos, mostly about technology and its intersection with crafts. Find her @bekathwia on YouTube/Twitter/Instagram.

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