The term subject matter can be defined simply as the topic at hand or the topic being discussed. It is anything that can be used as content for any type of theory. That being said, there are different types of the same.
Patentable subject matter is subject matter that is entitled to patent protection. Patent laws of several countries mention that certain subject matter cannot be patented, even if the invention is non-obvious and novel. The question of whether a certain subject matter is patentable or not depends on several factors like novelty, innovation, industrial applicability, and utility, which in turn differ from one country to another.
Certain things are not patentable in certain countries while some are – it boils down to the legal structure surrounding patents on the basis of national legislation and/or international law. For example, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) states that patents can only be granted for the physical implementation of an idea, or a process resulting in a tangible product that can be sold. Hence, it excludes computer programs and theorems. However, since processes are patentable, business methods are applicable. In the United States, whoever discovers or invents any innovative process, manufacture, composition of matter, or machine, or any new and useful improvement of an existing product can obtain a patent and hence, subject to the conditions and requirements.
A subject matter expert is a person who is well versed in a particular field or subject. They are usually employed when something very specific needs to be observed or calculated about something. SMEs are required in almost every industry and across all fields of study and are held in high regard for the contribution they can make to the company or field of study.