FAQ

How is a KPF competition created?

KPF staff (and any competition specific sponsor) will recruit from thought leaders, representative users, and at least one patent holder or patent examiner with relevant domain experience to serve on Project Panels. 

What does do Project Panels do?

Panels set achievable winning criteria with sufficient ambiguity to allow for unexpected creative genius. They will appoint a judge and jury to select winners, and mediate disputes that arise. 

What is a competition?

Competitions have objectives and prize monies. The winning criteria may be first-past-the-post or best performance by a given date. For each project area, KPF aims to host a series of competitions that build towards larger awards and better products. 

Entering teams will both compete and cooperate over the course of a series, and the personnel will have many opportunities to meet, mix and re-mix. 
 
Why might a winning team refuse the cash award?

Winners may incorporate a start-up and their board, executives, and staff may prefer to file for patents.  

Will KPF place functional products, designs and processes in the public domain?

Yes. Even when competitions end with the refusal of the prize money and the incorporation of a start-up, the preceding  competitions will produce open source work that can be freely distributed.
 
Will KPF focus on developing interfaces?

Yes. New markets can develop rapidly once interfaces are established. This is particularly true of systems that depend on network effects where value of the whole increases faster than the number of components according to Metcalfe's Law. 
 
How will entrants compensate members of their team?

Any entrant may create a team and offer new members compensation as a percentage of the cash award or equity if they become a start-up.  

Could an entry negotiate to use components from competitors' teams?

Yes.

Will the jury mediate cooperation between teams during a competition?

After competitions have been opened and innovators registered, competitors may ask and the judges may agree, to create an intermediate competition to create a resource for all teams to share..  
 
Can entrants participate in multiple submissions?

Yes, and graduating start-up founding teams will tend to have members from several different starting teams. Teams may reorganize after each stage in order to incorporate the best works and contributors from all the of entering teams.

How will teams protect their work?

Competitors will be provided with the means to secure their workspaces and work-in-progress. When the competition ends, teams will be encouraged to submit all of their source code and working notes to an encrypted vault as evidence in the event of future unresolved claims and tort proceedings.  

Can patented work be included in team submissions?

Yes. Winning work may use filed patents and issued patents. However, cash payment will only be made if all of the IP comprising the winning entry is transferred to the public domain. 

What are the other benefits to competitors?

In addition to having the option of receiving cash awards, the winners will be acclaimed in publicized award ceremonies. 

Can patent infringement be claimed to invalidate an entry?

Yes, and there will be a period after competition ends but before the winners are announced when all entries are available to inspection by all of the competitors. Competitors may attempt to disqualify each other based on published patents. The jury shall appoint a panel empowered either to accept or reject motions to disqualify.

Will patent searching be compensated?

Yes, and competitions that are entirely patent searches may be part of a competition series. 

What mechanisms will there be to attribute ownership of inventions?

KPF may provide a work platform for collaboration across the internet in order to time stamp work and help to establish claims. In the event of disputes about IP origins, the jury or an appointed judge may credit inventors for work that is unique, valuable, and non-obvious to those skilled in the art. 
 
When will cash winnings be disbursed?

The winning team will be paid when they assign all of the work contained in their winning entry. 

Will patents be sought by KPF?

No. Work resulting from the the use of public monies will always be put in the public domain. 

Will there be competitions for students, interns and apprentices? 

Yes. The early rounds will help to establish which ideas are obvious to practitioners skilled in the art.   



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