Fisher-Rosemount Systems Inc (Patent): IPO 25 Jul 2013

IPO The invention relates to a method of upgrading software in a process control system. It is often necessary as with all software installations to deploy new versions of the software which contain bug fixes and patches. Upgrades are usually accompanied by release notes which provide guidance to the plant engineer on how to install the upgrade as well as information relating to how this will affect the various components in the system. However, it is an arduous and time consuming task for the engineer to work through lengthy release notes and to install patches which are often poorly documented. Furthermore, it is common for companies to operate multiple process control systems on geographically separate sites each having different device configurations which means that software maintenance is a complex task which may require the plant engineer to travel long distances between sites. The invention provides a new arrangement for generating customised release notes in which knowledgebase articles (i.e. user-submitted articles and comments regarding the practical usage of a process control system, including techniques, known issues, workarounds, and the like) are combined with general release notes relating to the specific upgrade and are then filtered based on the actual configuration of the process system to present the plant engineer with the most relevant information relating to the upgrade and any potential effects it may have on his system in order for him to make a reasoned decision as to whether or not to deploy the upgrade. Upgrades can be made remotely by the plant engineer without taking the plant offline to ensure ‘continuous’ operation and avoid loss of revenue.
The Hearing Officer considered the four-step test in Aerotel/Macrossan in the light of the Symbian judgment, and found the contribution to relate to a computer program as such, and having found no technical contribution refused the application under Section 18(3).
Mr P Slater
[2013] UKIntelP o29613, O/296/13
England and Wales

Updated: 15 April 2021; Ref: scu.517157