Engineering projects vary widely in scope.  While I was consulting with a lawyer yesterday regarding patents and intellectual property I found myself describing how I interface technically with my customer and how information is exchanged. I was also thinking about my product and how important a role it had in the customers final product.  I found rotary viscous dampers can play many roles.  A product that is focused on the rotary viscous damper as the key performer in a critical medical device or airplane component all the way to a cosmetic lid to protect an LCD screen.  I was convinced that provisional patents for products and systems that contain them is a great way to protect your invention and should be pursued. Another byproduct of designing an engineering component for someone is that you find yourself immersed in learning their technology because you are designing a system with them and the final system must perform successfully.  No engineer is an island.  We enjoy designing rotary viscous dampers and friction hinges for our customers.  Come see us at and challenge us on your next project.