Technology Expert Witness Mike Slinn outlines his approach to rendering an expert opinion in the context of Daubert and Rule 702 while striving towards being believable and easily understood.
- Expert Background:
Michael Slinn is a technology expert. Mr. Slinn has an electronics engineering degree and 44 years‘ experience as a software professional. During that time, he has created dozens of innovative products himself, managed technical staff (including assuming VP, CTO and CEO roles several times), founded and run commercial and volunteer organizations, performed technical due diligence for investors, and mentored founders and founding teams. He has 35 years of experience assessing the technology capabilities of companies for raising public and private funds. Mr. Slinn reports and advises on technology, the process of creating intellectual property, and the suitability of a technology for producing business value.
The author of 3 books on distributed software systems, Mr. Slinn has taught computer science academically and commercially throughout most of his career. He opines on software and hardware; the processes by which intellectual property is produced; trade secrets and the intellectual property status of software, hardware, and processes. Mr. Slinn frequently draws on his decades of experience in product and project management. He has performed technical due diligence of software and hardware companies for investors since 1985.
Activities Mr. Slinn has performed as a software expert include:
• Assisting with patent litigation (researching, reporting)
• Assisting with inter partes patent reviews and reviews of covered business methods (researching prior art, etc)
• Reverse-engineering software
• Identifying copied software (source code and object code)
• Detecting evidence-tampering
• Reconstructing activity timelines by integrating disparate sources of information
• Correlating plaintiff's and defendant's data
• Writing and producing explainer videos for the courtroom
Mr. Slinn has been retained 17 times as a technology expert:
• 14 times as a software expert, and in 3 cases that required opinions on intellectual property related to electronic hardware and software.
• 10 times on behalf of defendants; 7 times on behalf of plaintiffs.
• Deposed 4 times and testified in court 4 times.
• Retained as an expert on 9 patent-related cases: 8 times for defendants and once for a plaintiff.
Retained for 8 contractual disputes:
• 4 times for defendants, and 4 times for plaintiffs
• 7 cases have required Mr. Slinn to examine source code.
• 4 of them required him to opine whether IP theft or copying had likely occurred.
• 2 cases have required that he opine whether significant IP had been generated or not.
For a European ITC case Mr. Slinn was the lead expert witness of 7 software experts; for this case he testified and was cross-examined before a tribunal of 5 judges.
Mr. Slinn has written expert reports and declarations for 5 clients. He has written 2 declarations for inter partes (IPR) patent review petitions and one declaration for a covered business method (CBM) for an online auction site.
Mr. Slinn has extensive experience with the following technologies:
• Blockchain and distributed ledger software
• Artificial intelligence, in particular hybrid machine learning / simulation / processing systems
• E-Commerce – server-side and client side (design, implementation, testing, integration)
• Online auctions (design, implementation, testing)
• Computer aided design (CAD) software (design, implementation, enhancement, testing, integration)
• Cartography and geographic information system (GIS) software (design, implementation, integration)
• Client-server and other types of distributed systems (design, implementation, testing, integration)
• Software and hardware communications protocols (design, implementation, testing, training)
• Operating systems (design, implementation, installation)
• Computer languages (design, implementation, marketing, testing, training)