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In Criminal Law, an agreement between two or more people to act jointly for an unlawful purpose; a conspiracy. In patent law, the joining together of several separate inventions to produce a new invention.

An illegal combination in restraint of trade, defined under the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, is one in which the conspirators agree expressly or impliedly to use devices such as price-fixing agreements to eliminate competition in a certain locality, e.g., when a group of furniture manufacturers refuse to deliver goods to stores that sell their goods for under a certain price.

In patent law a combination is distinguishable from an aggregation in that it is a joint operation of elements that produces a new result as opposed to a mere grouping together of old elements. This is important in determining whether or not something is patentable, since no valid patent can extend to an aggregation.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

COMBINATION. A union of different things. A patent may be taken out for a new combination of existing machinery, or machines. See 2 Mason, 112; and Composition of matter.
     2. By combination is understood, in a bad sense, a union of men for the purpose of violating the law.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Fujitsu Technology to Solve Combinatorial Optimization Problems for Medium-Sized Drug Discovery (press release, September 18, 2018)
Let us consider a combinatorial class F which is defined as a denumerable collection of objects built of atoms represented by X according to some well specified procedure.
Generating combinatorial test cases using simplified swarm optimization (SSO) algorithm for automated GUI functional testing, Eng.
Now, scientists can begin to study these nanoparticles as well as build other useful combinatorial libraries consisting of billions of structures that subtly differ in size and composition.
Next, we recall the definition of the combinatorial Hodge star operator *, defined by Wilson [2]:
(4) we enrich the application of combinatorial design in key management for WSNs and also point out some future research directions.
Universal combinatorial coding has many features in common with variety of classical encoding methods.
Given the presence of cost synergies in a multicontract auction environment there seems to be few reasons--if any--to believe that the standalone bids in a first-price combinatorial procurement auction on a set of individual contracts are identical to the bids submitted on the same set of contracts in a first-price auction without the option to bid on packages.
97, and even though notes are missing, the complete partitions within this section still remain combinatorial and complementary between the registers.
A third combinatorial model was given by Corteel and Williams [5].
High-throughput combinatorial approaches to the study of alloys include synthesizing a sample with an array of alloy or ceramic compositions (material libraries) and then studying/screening their structures and properties simultaneously or serially.
In support of the descriptive data, post-hoc analyses (Fisher's PLSD) revealed significant superiorities of specified over unspecified responding, particularly when the latter contained mixed and/or combinatorial relations (see Table 2).

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