“At Google, we’re constantly trying to make important collections of information more useful to the world. Since 2006, we’ve let people discover, search, and read United States patents online. Starting this week, you can do the same for the millions of ideas that have been submitted to the European Patent Office, such as this one.
Typically, patents are granted only if an invention is new and not obvious. To explain why an invention is new, inventors will usually cite prior art such as earlier patent applications or journal articles. Determining the novelty of a patent can be difficult, requiring a laborious search through many sources, and so we’ve built a Prior Art Finder to make this process easier. With a single click, it searches multiple sources for related content that existed at the time the patent was filed. ”
Read more: http://googlepublicpolicy.blogspot.ca/2012/08/improving-google-patents-with-european.html
Washington/Munich – In their efforts to promote harmonization in the field of patents, the European Patent Office (EPO) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) have launched a dedicated website for the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) initiative. CPC is a joint project aimed at developing a classification scheme for inventions that will be used by both offices in the search and examination of patent applications. The launch of the website highlights the progress of this collaborative effort over the year since the Offices agreed to work toward formation of a joint patent classification system.
The website, www.cpcinfo.org, will contain detailed information about the new classification scheme. The website will serve as an informative resource on the progress of the project for our staff and for other patent offices worldwide, industry and the user community.
“The launch of the CPC website one year after the signing of the agreement is a first significant achievement on the way to greater harmonization in the patent system. The innovation market is a global market, and in order to efficiently support it with a quality-based patent system, it is essential that patent offices in the large economic regions align the procedures and tools”, said EPO President Benoît Battistelli. “The new classification system not only benefits both offices, it will also make it easier for innovators to use the wealth of information contained in patent documents. It is an important part of our commitment to offering better services to innovators and industry,” he said.
“The development of a common basis for classifying inventions is a further step forward in bringing the European and the United States’ patent systems closer together,” said Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO, David Kappos. “This comes at an opportune time when the United States has introduced a major reform of the patent system in an effort to better align with the rest of the world,” he said. “The project is also a stepping stone towards harmonizing the patent procedures of all the major patent offices around the globe,” he added.
The CPC will be a detailed IPC based scheme that will enable patent examiners to efficiently conduct thorough patent searches. CPC will incorporate the best classification practices of both the US and European systems. The Offices also believe that the CPC will enhance efficiency and support work sharing initiatives with a view to reduce unnecessary duplication of work.
The two offices plan to start using the new scheme on 1 January 2013.
To stay current with the USPTO, subscribe to regular e-mail updates at www.uspto.gov/subscribe.
Brian Barrett of Gizmodo writes an opinion piece about the patent wars that he claims are damaging the technology industry.
Do you agree? What should be done to encourage innovation?
[Read more at Gizmodo]
IPscore, the EPO’s patent portfolio management tool, has just been released and can now be downloaded free of charge.
You can use IPscore to:
- examine your company’s patent portfolio
- analyse the value of individual patents
- align your company’s patent strategy with your overall business strategy
- make the best use of patents as a business tool
- identify opportunities and risks.
The tool uses 40 factors to assess each patent and visualises the input in spider and portfolio diagrams. The results of the evaluation are stored in a database.
IPscore was originally developed by the Danish Patent and Trademark Office, but was later bought by the EPO.
Accompanying the release of IPscore, we have also posted a short introductory video called “Patent portfolio management with IPscore”.
Other training opportunities include an online “virtual classroom” session and a two-day training course at the EPO, which provides a thorough introduction to patent valuation and how to use IPscore. The course includes hands-on exercises to help you get to know how to use the many features.
Check out patents created by Prince, George Lucas, Harry Houdini, Walt Disney, Mark Twain and more at
Printing patents from the US or European websites can be frustrating and time-consuming. If you already have the number of the patent you’d like to print, print2pdf.org quickly produces a free, easily printable pdf of patents. Unfortunately, this service is only available for US patents, and you can’t search patents from the site, but the convenience it offers for printing makes it a great tool.
If you’d like to use print2pdf, make sure you link to “.org” and not “.com” – while the commercial site may be helpful for those willing to pay to for a better patent searching interface, it’s not free.