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OPTICAL COMPUTING DEVICES; { COMPUTING DEVICES USING OTHER RADIATIONS WITH SIMILAR PROPERTIES} (optical logic elements per se G02F 3/00; digital storage using optical elements G11C 13/04)
Definition statement
This subclass/group covers:

All devices in which at least one computing function is performed by optical means.

References relevant to classification in this group
This subclass/group does not cover:
Computer systems based on specific computational models
Digital storage using optical elements
Optical logic elements per se
Special rules of classification within this group

This technology is hardly used anymore.

Optical computers were a technology that was popular between 1900 - 2000.

After 2000 there are virtually no patent applications in this field anymore.

If other aspects, for example mechanical, fluid pressure or electrical computing, are of interest, classification is also made in the relevant subclass for such aspects.

Devices for processing exclusively digital data
Definition statement
This subclass/group covers:

Optical computers working exclusively on digital data.

References relevant to classification in this group
This subclass/group does not cover:
Electronic digital computers
Optical digital storage
Optical logic elements
Quantum computers
Special rules of classification within this group

Documents should be classified in the subgroups of G06E 1/00 only if they deal with purely digital optical computing.

Devices not provided for in group G06E 1/00, e.g. for processing analogue or hybrid data
Definition statement
This subclass/group covers:

Optical computers operating not exclusively on digital data, but on analogue data or a combination of digital and analogue data (hybrid).

References relevant to classification in this group
This subclass/group does not cover:
Analog electronic computers
Electronic digital computers
Hybrid non-optical computing devices
Optical digital storage
Optical logic elements
Quantum computers
Special rules of classification within this group

Documents should be classified in the subgroups of G06E 3/00 only if they deal with purely optical computing on a combination of digital and analogue data or on analogue data only.

This page is owned by Office of Patent Classification.
Last Modified: 10/11/2013