I hear too many people saying, “I’ve got this great idea. If I could just get it patented, I’d make a million dollars.” A patent isn’t a ticket into a life of luxury. It doesn’t mean squat if you don’t use it. The first indication of this should be the sheer number of patents and the lack of a corresponding number of millionaires in America. If that isn’t enough, then this site should give you an idea that not every patent will spawn a trust fund.
A patent is what you make of it. It is the start of a long process involving manufacturing, marketing, selling, and struggling. Just as buying hammer at Home Depot doesn’t mean you’ll come home to a newly remodeled home, owning a patent doesn’t guarantee you any sort of success. It’s a tool whose effectiveness is realized by the skill and drive of the owner.