ARISTA NETWORKS, INC. v. CISCO SYSTEMS, INC., decided November 9, 2018, Claim Interpretation

U.S. Patent No. 7,340,597 is directed to securing network devices using a logging module for configuration changes (pages 2-3).  “Broadcast” was construed as requiring a broadcast transmission to be delivered to all network devices (pages 5-6).  The patent includes “multicasting via a multicast address as a type of broadcasting” and does not disclose any other type of broadcasting (page 9).  Multicasting does not necessarily transmit to all destinations (page 9).   “Transmission to one or more devices” is overly broad as it encompasses other transmissions than a broadcast (page 10).  Expert testimony alone is not sufficient to require the sender to not know the addresses that ultimately receive as a broadcast (page 11).  “Broadcasting” is interpreted to mean a transmission using a multicast address based on the specification (page 11).  As a side note, assignor estoppel does not apply to IPR due to statutory language allowing anyone not an owner to file an IPR (page 21).

Hindsight: The disclosure of a single example (“multicasting”) resulted in a narrow definition of “broadcasting.”  It may have been better to include multiple examples instead of giving just one example.  If other examples are not to be included, it may be best to mention that other types of broadcasting may be used so that skill in the art informs the interpretation.