Amazon Product Design, Prototypes & Patents
with Thom Wright from InventionArt LLC
Want to make more money on Amazon?
Step #1 is a great product.
Something with a "wow" factor. Something that works well.
To create great products, you need great design.
So today, Thom Wright from InventionArt LLC drops by the AsteroidX studio to chat Amazon product design, prototypes, and patents. Thom's a super-knowledgeable guy, producing 150+ professional, photorealistic patent application drawings every year. And some 3D CAD models, too.
If you liked the AsteroidX episode with Amazon patent lawyer Rich Goldstein (link here) you'll love this chat with Thom.
Key Takeaways
1 It's not enough to have an idea. You need to make a mock-up and prototype to prove the idea works on a physical level.

2 Make a first-generation prototype using a competitor's product alongside the design or utility changes you intend to bring to market

3 When picking a product, start with the end in mind: who's the customer? Why are they going to click your Amazon listing? Which e-commerce distribution channel is this for?

4 Certain product ideas (e.g. fabric goods) are easier to iterate on than others (e.g. plastic or metal mold injections)

5 Pay attention to the ratio of "value to material". For example, plastic garbage bags are a commodity and sell for close to the cost of goods. But, if you melt them down into a surf board fin (which is a particular product niche), the margins increase.

6 some different material mediums you can play with: 3D printing, metals, plastics, fabrics, carbon fiber, electronics, glass, wood
Pat: Hello everybody. Welcome to this guest episode. I'm here with Tom Wright. Tom, thanks. Thanks for joining us.

Thom: Well, thank you. Thanks for having me on Tom Wright with the InventionArt LLC. And we provide early development product services, uh, prototyping design. Uh, we help people get started with manufacturing and we also do quite a bit in the patent sector. Uh, patent drawings. Um, uh, and everything kind of feeds off each other from there.

Pat: And this is, and there's a hyper-crucial point in my opinion, because if you don't have a good product a and you proceed with Amazon or any other sort of e-commerce, eh, it's not so good. Everything just sort of falls apart. I mean, this is the determining factor, but it's also when generally sellers have the least amount of experience and expertise. So putting a heavy emphasis on this and doing it right initially, I think it's important.

Thom: Yeah. And really what's important is the coordination of all of that. Because let's say you have your product and your patent in your design, let's take those as three separate things. Okay. If you have a product idea and you go straight to making it, you'll probably end up with a product that's almost great. Uh, and if you don't, if you just skip the whole development phase, really prototyping, testing and all that. And then also if you take your idea and go straight to patenting without doing any development on it, you'll end up with a patent. But often you'll want to change that patent after you've done the design process. Um, because they don't, you'll have finally found better solutions to things through that development process. And so really you have to think of, um, development and prototyping as being a pretty big step, a big step, sort of after the idea phase, but before the patent phase or the production phase.

Thom: Um, cause if you go, if you go straight to a manufacturer, obviously if you go to straight to a manufacturer or with just sort of a concept, they're not going to know what to do with that. But, um, if you go to them with something that you have, you don't have the clearest ideas of, you're going to, you're just going to end up with something that like, well, this would have been great if the latch worked properly or you know, if it had been folded the way I wanted it to. And so, um, I feel like that phase, that early stuff where you're, where you're not treating your idea as a finished like an idea doesn't have an end to it. It has a beginning, which is the spark, but it sort of trails off to the practical matters of manufacturing and things like that.

Thom: Uh, being kind of iterated the whole time. If you get really stuck on the original line, here's what I'm going to say. Nobody's original idea is new as quite good as that idea. Then iterated, developed, hashed out a little further, um, made, made better in some way or made, uh, more manufacturable or cheaper to make or something like that and speak. A lot of people will add and subtract features. Um, you know, a really common thing is that, that people want to do stuff that's app connected and then they kind of later realize that the APP connectivity isn't really a main feature, but it triples their development costs because now they have to hire a developer and you know, get approved on the Apple app store and that kind of stuff. And so you have to, you have to kind of take each feature and say, how important is this? And, and really not how important is, is how, how much more likely does this feature? I'm going to produce a a by click on Amazon or whatever platform here might be using.

Pat: Yeah, right. Speaking of Amazon, I guess just to put this in context for people, this is not the model where you're buying direct from manufacturer at a completed product. What Tom and I are going to talk about today is, um, if you have an idea for a product and to your knowledge, it is entirely new. It's novel. It's never been done before, at least in the way that you're thinking about it. So we're going to go through, it's an improvement. Oh, well yeah. So, so maybe if you could, um, add some color to that, like how much of an improvement constitutes and a new building

Thom: like this? Well, when you're talking about mold making, anything, any changes, you make them wire or a brand new build. But when you're talking about, um, let's use fabric goods. Fabric goods are a great example because there's no, um, fabric goods or one of those things that like, if you need 10 tee shirts made, you need 10 people to make a t-shirt or one person to make 10 t-shirts or it's not, it's a, it's a one to one, somebody has to make it, unless there's an automated machine. But for most fabric goods, there's just, it's just literally a room full of people running sewing machines and each one is put out by a person if you're going to make a change to a product like that, it's really just a matter of communicating that to the manufacturer. If you're doing something that's plastic injection molded though any change in the features requires a new mold, unless it's very small and they can cut it into the existing mold or something like that.

Thom: And so, um, you end up in a situation where if you're, you want to be sort of changed proof, uh, when you get to the point where you're going to end up with a sea container or something, you know. Um, but for as far as improvements go, really almost every idea somebody has as an improvement on somebody else's ideas, you know, that's just sort of the nature of society is, and the evolution of, of ideas is that most people don't have something. Well, something like, like there's no category on Amazon for it, you know what I mean? Completely out at, you know, that has just new and nobody has any, has never seen anything like it. Um, but mostly what happens is people see something that exists and they think I'm an improvement and they want to implement that improvement. And so you sort of, you then, um, limit your development. So the, to that improvement essentially. Um, and kind of a tack it on to the existing body of products. Okay.

Pat: Okay. And so what then, so you have an idea for an improvement on a product product category. Um, how do you go from concept phase two and I guess you mentioned earlier perhaps that you'd want to think this through pretty carefully because once it's cast in the mold you're done, once it's shipped to you're done. So you would have wanted to talk a lot of the work intellectually in this first part.

Thom: Yeah. Yeah. You want to, um, if you're going to take some, so a lot of times if you're going to take something and do an improvement, you know, one of the first steps is to get several examples of the things that already exist, um, in that category and sort of compare them and figure out what features that you like best and you know, kind of, and then take your improvement and sort of put it on that object in whichever way.

Pat: Okay. Just tacking something on. Yep.

Thom: The new buckle. It's a new, you know, it's something, it's something new or, uh, a lot of times an improvement that people make is to add some electronics to something that makes it, um, internet of things or um, know somehow Bluetooth enabled or there's a lot of products out there that people will take like a very regular product. I mean, at this point, even when you buy it like a washer and dryer, there's some app connectivity that you can opt for. Um, but also people are smart. They mean a lot of times, like, especially in things like exercise equipment, people will just think of a better, you know, there are certain fields that are not, I guess what I would say that they don't feel fully developed to me. There seems to be, there's a room somewhere, um, for improvements and people make those improvements. And a lot of times I feel like that really does make the difference, especially when you're talking about a global marketplace that the market has access to. Everything kind of made, um, you do, you need to have some hook essentially to differentiate your product from the others.

Pat: What kind of, you mentioned there's some fields that are riper for this than others, or what, what sorts of fields that you'd be looking at?
Thom: Is that like a specific sports or specific kind of, you know what I'm saying? Like not, not general. There's not a lot of room for, I don't know, towels and wash cloths, you know what I mean is not a lot of room in bicycle wheel maybe or there's not a lot of written like, but there is a lot of room in camera mounts or, um, as I said, like app connectivity things, um, exercise equipment. There seems to be always a lot of innovation in, um, I'm trying to think of good examples, but I, you know, they're just, they're just some fields that are like that, that feel just very packed, you know, packed from, from a point of view. Um, and then, then the other thing is, is that there are fields that appeal more to a much larger entities. And so I always feel like the trick with Amazon is to find a niche that you sort of begin to understand you better than your competitors or you, um, have an innovation that, that they haven't quite thought of.

Thom: You know, there's, uh, like, um, accessories for iPhones is one of those like open, open, you know, like iPhone cases, closed, other accessories, lots of room for development, you know, um, right. Because if you set out to do an iPhone case right now, you're going to, there's going to be 50,000 other products, like if that you're going to compete with. But, uh, a great example is those Suction Cup things that were you holding the phone kind of on the back know I think I did three patents in a year on devices like that. And so it shows that there's an openness to it. Um, and you know, and that's the other thing about to say about, uh, ideas is that frequently, um, from my experience, I do about a, I do the patent drawings for probably 150, 200 patents a year. Um, they Patton's come in packs like the society is somehow now ripe for a certain kind of idea and 10 or 15 people have that idea.

Thom: At that time, you know, there was one, there was one year where uh, uh, attorney Rich Goldstein who you spoke to in another video and I did, I think we did four patents, four ways to put lotion on your back when you're in the shower. You know, it was like, I knew it just for some reason it was an empty field is ready. Like then, then people, people all thought of the same ideas at the same time. Uh, what did, what do you think causes those sort of societal light bulbs to go off? I just think it's like things become available to people, you know, at, at some point. Um, at some point, uh, having a screen on your device was prohibitively expensive for development. You really needed to be thinking of selling units in the millions in order to make it worthwhile. And, uh, now if want like a little touchscreen on your device, it's not really any big deal. Like, you know, you have tons to choose from. They're not very expensive. It's easy to integrate that into a device that you might have. Um, so the technology catches up. People are, people are more exposed to certain kinds of objects and so those improvements sort of make themselves available to people all the awards.

Pat: Right, right, right. Yeah. Manufacturers have economies of scale. I've heard it to illustrate this point that it was actually harder to source and microwave without a clock than one with a clock in it just because the parts came configured that way. Right? Yeah. Right. So yeah, maybe a confluence of consumer demand, but more probable the technology catches up.

Thom: It's just the right time though. Like, so the Amazon is a perfect example of like an emerging, uh, a business where you could compete against much larger entities and then yourself on a sort of level playing field. And so there are a lot more people doing that now because it's possible. Uh, it used to be the case that you sort of had to go and make your own platform and start your own store and develop, do all of web development and all of the things and then, and then all the marketing and advertising over that. Um, and so because things are available to people, then they take advantage of them and then through taking advantage of them, they have a shared experience and through a shared experience they start to have some similar ideas I think is kind of what happens. Right.

Pat: All right. Okay. Makes Sense. So, so, so we have, we have this idea, we, we order a prototype, we sort of Frankenstein it together. It's, we're hacking it a little bit and we have this prototype which is part your innovation and part a, the product that you ordered, competitor, industry, Standard, whatever. Um, is that enough to prove that you have something workable here? Like just even

Thom: the object is very often, very often. So the, I think that the prototype that you're thinking about is the one that somebody makes it their kitchen table while they're kind of hashing out the idea, which is slightly different than the, the sort of product demo prototype so that I produce, you know, and so, and some things need a proof of concept so that you know, whether it's usable or or desirable or works at all. Um, and some things don't. Some things are really obviously you know, can exist and do exist. If you think about a new idea for, um, a wedding band for example, ring, uh, you know that it exists, you know, people use them. Now what your challenges is thinking of a design differentiation. It doesn't need features. It doesn't, it doesn't need a prototype except for you to have it in your hand to look at, to make sure that the proportions are right and that kind of thing.

Thom: Um, then if you're talking about like a piece of electronics, you need to, you need to make a crude version and then you need to make kind of a semi crude version and then you need to make a product level version and then probably we'll do a couple of those before you really arrive at the exact like, um, the sweet spot in terms of costs of manufacturing and uh, how easy it is to manufacturer. And you know, some of the challenges are that, you know, with some things you can go straight to like a short run and just test your market and see things starts to sell. Then you know, you should make more, some things you need to make in the tens of thousands in order to get the machine started in order to make something that won't cost you more than, than you can sell it for.

Pat: And that would be stuff like molds and we're talking to that sort of thing.

Thom: Yeah, right, right. If you think of an improvement on a drywall screw, you better be planning to make millions of them before you're even going to know if your market will support it. Okay. You know what I'm saying? Whereas if you're going to make a knitted sweaters and you just make them one at a time and when you run out, then you know you need to make more.

Pat: Well, well that's it. Yeah. So the way easier to iterate and I'm just thinking, yeah, soft goods. Um, well really anything that doesn't need, just trying to think of the fabric is what it a good example that you brought up before. Uh, any other product categories fall into that class of sort of rapid prototyping and you can get to market pretty quickly. I'm just thinking,

Thom: what about thinking about single part items? A great example is, um, how about the, you know, the Apple AirPods. Um, frequently people will buy some single part silicone accessory to make it fit in there. He heard better. And so those are the kinds of things that you can develop and you can get to mold and, and that without it, without it being prohibitively, well, I don't know if it's prohibitively, but without it being very expensive. Um, you know, I always think that the, one of the tricks is to try to find products that have a high, um, material to cost ratio. And a great example of that is like if you take like, I dunno, 10 or so garbage bags and melt them down, uh, what would those costs you 10 cents a, you could melt them down into a surfing fin, which is $22. It's the same material.

Thom: It's the, you know what I mean? Have the same volume. It's just that it's a particular shape, makes it more valuable. And so to me, I think that that's a great way to start with things. It's just try to find a single, a single part item, something that's made out of one or one thing and like, you know, nuts and bolts, kind of, kind of existing hardware, um, is those kinds of things are not, not too difficult to short run, whereas there you can't really short run, um, certain other things. And as I said, those are, those are the kinds of things that are either very inexpensive on their own, like nuts and screws and that kind of hardware or, um, something like that. And then there are other things on the other than the way other end, like you can't like it. Who cares if you have an idea for a new cell phone?

Thom: Right. You know what I mean? Like unless you're, unless you're going in with a billion, then, you know, it doesn't really matter that, that you have the idea, you know what I mean? Because you, you know, when people, when people come with, with patents for the auto industry, for example, sorry, I, to me, I'm like, yeah, but the cost to entry to that, to that category is, is high. Plus you're dealing with, um, if you were going to try to OEM something, you're dealing with companies that already have their own engineering department, so you'd have to push through, like please sign this nondisclosure agreements so that I can tell you an idea that your engineers are going to tell, I'll tell you is crap. You know, it was kind of ahead of once you end up with, um, and so it's good to, it's good to find those sort of the, the in between stuff that's like, um, and, and I feel like the places that those exist the most are in really specific fields. If you love surfing or you love tennis or you love golf or something like that, those are the kinds of things that people, people who love those things spend money on them because that's their kind of hobby and it becomes kind of part of their identity. And so they're willing to pay kind of a premium for them because they are specialized. Right?

Pat: Right. Garbage Bags, commodity surfing, Finn Attachment, same materials. Better ratio. Better. Yeah. The material to cost ratio. There is a brilliant observation. Um, okay. So what's it like, obviously specific examples aside, but if someone going to invention art and you're like, you know, uh, what sort of stuff do you like to see? How developed does the prototype need to be? And if someone sends something to you and you're like, you know, yes, we can definitely make this work and it's market viable. You could maybe describe that and like, you know, vague terms, not to disclose anything but just like a general profile.

Thom: So the information that I get from a potential client really varies between like a napkin sketch and some conversations and full on engineer cad models. Um, and so to me it doesn't really matter. Like either way, it's like if they like it, what's that?
Pat: We'll take, we'll take a shot at it, right? Yeah. No, it's not even a shot. It's, it,

Thom: you develop a sense of what people are after. Right. And then also, um, people who have things less developed usually are more interested in being coached a little bit. Okay. And so you, you know, they'd give you a Napkin sketch, you do a design, they make some comments. You do nothing, you iterate the design comments. Keep going. The way that I work anyway is that I'll just do the, I just work on the design until the client's happy with it. And so I'm willing to take sort of however many comments and, you know, we, it's never like 50 rounds of stuff. It's, you know, 10 rounds or something like that because you, you know, I try to listen to the information they're giving me and come up with solutions that are going to like, and then, you know, I'm not super surprised when somebody was like, yeah, that's what I was talking about.

Thom: Um, it's just a matter of developing a feel for that. And so, um, people are just, are, are, it varies how ready they are and it also, so what I try to do to kind of weed that out is that, um, when I first talked to somebody, I try to talk to them about their goals before I talked to them about their product. That some people want to get something patented because they think there's some license ability to their patents. Some people are already a company that manufactures things and they just want to get a quick patent so that they, so that they have some protection. Um, some people want a product that they're gonna that they're gonna make and, and start a new business. Some people, it, it, it really varies. And so to me, what I think is most important is finding out what their goals are and then trying to help them get to that through.

Thom: So for example, sometimes somebody will come to me for a prototype and then I talked to them and they say, yeah, I've got this investor meeting and I'm going to go and talk to these other people. And then I have these other people overseas who, and so I'm like, why don't we put together some photorealistic renderings? It'll cost Ya, you know, a 10th as much. Um, because your idea doesn't necessarily need a physical prototype. Uh, it needs a, if you're at the point where you're like, well, I have an idea and I'm trying to attract investors, you know, I don't know how much money you want to spend on a prototype because the prototype will become obsolete the first time somebody makes a comment about it. You know what I mean? And you're like, oh yeah, that would have been a little better. Maybe I should go back and make another, another prototype. And then other things, if you didn't make a prototype, you'd be crazy because you, you just, you just have to, in order to be able to make the kinds of choices you're going to need to make to get to that final product.

Pat: Is that because it's less design and more a function like

Thom: yeah. Or it's, um, it's, it's, it's a lot of, so a frequent thing that people do when they have an idea about something when we're talking about straight ideas, I'm not talking about like a specific product is that they kind of leave off for the future. The part that they don't understand. And so you end up in this, you know what? I mean like, well, I don't know, I'll get an engineer to figure that out after the fact. Um, and what ends up happening is you say, well, this part can't be infinitely slippery at some point and also infinitely holes that other points you just like, there's no material that works that way or there's no, you know, there isn't a solution for exactly that, but we can find a solution. You know what I'm saying? It's not like, like, and so people will leave that off a lot.

Thom: They'll say like, oh, I'll just have somebody outs, have somebody figure that out for me later. That part of the invention. And that's like, um, I guess that's how you get perpetual motion machines and you know what I mean? Like stuff that, that, that core of the innovation hasn't been dealt with in any serious manner. Um, and so that's a great reason to prototype is because you don't, you have, you had some detail that needs, it needs to be worked on. It needs to be kind of stroked a little bit. Are you, you're not going to arrive at something that, that is certainly not a product. You know what I mean?

Pat: It'll be something, it'll be something like, oh, may I'm modern art maybe. I Dunno. Um, right. Okay. Yeah. It makes sense. Cause at a certain point, yeah, gravity, uh, for friction, just performance rubber hits the road and you have to see if it works or not.

Thom: Um, yeah. Well it also, another really common sort of parallel thing to that is people come up with an innovation but there's no way cost wise that that innovation could be included and have the product compete in its, in its marketing point that, I mean that happens a lot. You end up with, you know, all kinds of, I don't know, just to add on stuff that isn't met maybe at the core of the thing. Um, and then, and then the, you know, nobody is going to pay, nobody's going to pay twice as much for something because it has a feature that they, the know what I'm saying? People, people typically will cost shop I guess. Right. And so you want to make sure that when you develop something that you can manufacture and sell it for something that is in the range of the things that already exist, things exist in that market.

Pat: Yeah. Well that makes a lot of sense. And you know, I haven't gone to that. Have you seen people design products with different platforms in distribution platforms in mind because for example, the protein you're talking about where it needs to be priced competitive, practical considerations, physical form factor needs to be up to par. Like that's like you know Walmart product is good value and there's also maybe debatably a Kickstarter product, which is rages on an innovation of some sort and a visual differentiator. Very clickable. And maybe Amazon, something in between. I'm not quite sure. But if you notice people starting with channels in mind or are they just more just like, it's like I have this idea and whatever happens distribution wise later

Thom: it happens. I would say in my experience everybody has a channel and they have like a vision of what they're going to do. A lot of people have a vision of I'm going to patent this idea and then my patent has a certain value to it that I could use for licensing. Um, and I guess I'm going to say as a tip that can start a band in your garage that has a platinum record and, and totally possible it does happen. Um, the idea that you would have a totally undeveloped idea that you patented and then somebody would licensed that patent from you. Um, I've yet to see it. Okay. And that's different. That's different than a developed idea that also has a patent, those kinds of things you can license. But just to be like, well, I got the patent so I'm going to be rich.

Thom: You know, it's, it doesn't, it doesn't work that way. You know, I, as I said, I haven't seen, I know that, I know that people maintain patent portfolios and licensed things out and all that. But when I'm talking, I'm talking about like new inventors, um, frequently that's their model. Well, you know, it's just the idea. I'm just going to have somebody else do the stuff. And it's in fact the doing the stuff, like knowing what platform you're getting ready for or that, that, that really ends up kind of mattering. And so I do, I do see people who are, you can just Dave talking about Kickstarter and they're like, okay, I'm going to do a Kickstarter campaign. Can you help me come up with some assets for my Kickstarter campaign? Um, and then other people really are like, well, I have an Amazon seller account that I'm getting started and I just want to manufacturer this idea.

Thom: Um, and then some people are thinking they're going to visit their local drug store and see if the, you know, see if, or like get the attention of a buyer at a trade show or, which I think is, uh, you know, to me there are certain, there are certain markets where that's what you do. You make a Tate like toy fair, you go to toy fair with your toy. You have, you know, you have 10 examples that are really nice prototypes and then you try to attract orders. And so yeah, I think the Pie, I think the platform makes it makes a huge difference as to, um, where you might start kind of not exactly at the original idea, but I guess that's not even true. If you're going to sell something, if you're going to develop something for Amazon, you should develop something that sells on it, that that is the kinds of things they sell on Amazon.

Thom: Like if you're going to do a Kickstarter campaign, you want to do something like, you want to think about who uses Kickstarter, you know, who uses Kickstarter? It's people that know how to use their computer. You know what I mean? It's people who are willing to put up a little bit of money cause something's got like a cool factor to it, uh, that they're not going to get the product right away. That's not the same as like somebody putting an ad on item of shampoo in their Amazon cart. It is a different market. And I think you really should design your concepts to, to match who you're selling to, right?

Pat: Yeah. And I mean, yeah, if you're, if you're listening to this right now and we are bringing up these points, it's an interesting thing to think about at least, right, because the idea is one thing, but execution on the idea in a working prototype is another thing you could start with cost as Thomas mentioned. So cost, um, the ratio of the value of the raw materials to the perceived value on the part of the consumer. Very important. Um, and, and starting with channels in mind as well. Like, I mean, uh, yeah, Amazon is, Amazon is definitely different than Kickstarter. Like I've, I've, I've done both, so I've seen it, but it's like, you know, um, Amazon's probably middle spectrum between, you know, a Walmart purchase and a a and a Kickstarter purchase more nor day to day practical though for the most part.

Thom: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, Kickstarter is a pretty specific thing. I think you have to have some, some, uh, a certain kind of attractiveness to, um, to make people want to fund something that you're still working on. That's right. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Okay. Okay. Um, okay, that's good.

Pat: Did decent enough. Summary, so, and, uh, I guess anything that's you, you know, are the things that you see in ventures or, or you know, product a people getting getting wrong. Oh, all the time. Common mistakes and they come to you and you're just like, I really wished which she hadn't done that or

Thom: that wasn't so good. Most of the time I read I'm, I'm with people, uh, soon enough in the process. I try to be very honest with people. You know, I, I'm not right all the time, but I feel like I do. When I, when I see a red flag, I pointed out, uh, sometimes that hurts my business a little bit, but, uh, my, my firm is not, we're not trying to catch everybody. We're trying to get some, get some good clients and help them out. And so it's not the thing that I just told you about starting a rock band and getting a platinum album. I think I've said on the phone three or four times to this this week. You know what I'm saying? Cause people, people when it comes to, especially when it comes to intellectual property, patents, trademarks, copyright, that people have, there's, there's certain society-wide misconceptions of um, um, of some things we can do with that.

Thom: People do. For example, a really common one is people think that because you have a patent that gives you the right to manufacture something, um, you don't actually need anybody's permission to manufacture something. You don't need any kind of, I don't know any check from the government or anything like that. Um, and also the concept that a patent prevents other people from making your, uh, your idea. That's only true if you litigate against them. Um, but the, the core of why you get a patent this because you'd like to be able to like make something without somebody else copying you. And I think that's totally valid and, and works very well. Um, but it can't be your only, your only thing. You know what I mean? It really, really needs to be doing parallel or, or concurrent processes to, if you really do want to come out with something that has to do with design development testing the patent.

Thom: Um, one really good side tip by the way, is that a, for Amazon people, a design patent does a great job. So I don't know if you know the difference between a utility patent and a design patent originally were talking about that a little bit the other day, but I'd be curious to hear your take. Yeah. So a utility patent is just about like a specific innovation functionality. Something like that. Design patent is literally like top, bottom side views of a thing you could, you could design patent and the Velvet Elvis lamp if you wanted to as long as you would come up with a at original design. Um, and so a design patent isn't, it's not examined by the patent office. So, and it's probably like, I don't know, a third of the price of some of, of the utility patents. Um, but for some reason I've heard this from a couple of different attorneys. 

Thom: Amazon will look at it, a design patent and because of design patent is literally just views of the product. Meaning it's not like a view of the hand that shows a dotted line to the thing that's moving. It's just literally like, you know, views from a box. Um, it means you don't have to be an expert to examine it. And so I've heard of people having good luck with design patents where they produced something, somebody else produces that thing, they put it on Amazon and Amazon kicks them off because of you show them your design patent. So I feel like, and because if you have a design patent, you can say patent pending, well, it's being while you're doing up the application and it kind of carries a lot of the same weights as a utility patents. Um, but it's sort of like, I don't know, a quarter of the paperwork and, um, a lot of people have been saying it's actually more effective and to doing the thing you're trying to do, which is prevent somebody else from taking your idea and making money off of it. Right. Yeah,

Pat: yeah. Uh, yeah. Pretty much corroborates what Rich was saying the other day. Counter-intuitive a little bit. Maybe not in other business practices, but uh... for Amazon that seems to be the case. Yeah.

Thom: yeah, yeah. Okay. Okay. Yeah. Um...

Pat: Cool. Well, thanks so much Thom. That was like a whirlwind tour of pretty much what you, what you need. Um, yes, super smart, super knowledgeable. If you want to let people know where, uh, where and when they can get ahold of you, um, that would, uh...

Thom: be awesome. Yeah, that's great. If anybody wants to go to a is my website and you go to the for a, for consumers page, uh, and you know, either call me or leave something on the form and I'll respond to it usually that day. Um, yeah, I'd love to speak to anybody.

Pat: All right. Tom Wright. InventionArt LLC. Thanks for stopping by!

Thom: Thank you.