Two Fantastic Updates to Free Patent Search Tools: Espacenet and PATENTSCOPE

Free patent search tools like Espacenet and PATENTSCOPE are an excellent resource for both casual  and professional patent searchers who want to quickly locate data on a specific patent document or scope out more detailed citation, legal status, and family data for both US and non-US patent documents. Recently, both Espacenet (created by the EPO) and PATENTSCOPE (created by WIPO) released some useful new updates: direct links to the Common Citation Document (CCD) viewer are now accessible from INPADOC family lists on Espacenet, and a new collection of US patent documents has been added to PATENTSCOPE. 

After the jump, learn about the new citation viewing features for INPADOC families on Espacenet, and find out the coverage of PATENTSCOPE’s new US collection!
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My Favorite Patent Search Tool Updates of 2012

Another year has come and gone, and it’s that time in December where we’re all racing to the nearest mall (or Amazon) to shop for holiday gifts for the important people in our lives.  Patent searchers enjoy getting presents too, and each database update is a small gift of new features and tools to improve the prior art search and analysis processes.  New databases and search platforms are the equivalent of a new bicycle or Xbox, and searchers can’t wait to take the new system for a test ride.  Like last year, I’d like to highlight a few of my favorite patent search gifts that I’ve received in the last twelve months, including updates and new platforms for both free and subscription patent search systems. Over the past year, there have been major updates to Orbit.com, Google Patents, and Espacenet, and I’ve been impressed by new patent search tools like the CCD and WIPS Global ADVANCED. Patent searchers have received an abundance of gifts this year, but professionals who work with patent file histories shouldn’t feel left out, either: they can take an innovative new patent file history service for a free test ride!

After the jump, learn about the best patent search system updates and new tools of 2012, as well as a unique resource for professionals who review patent file histories!

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Free Customizable Patent Citation Lists Through the CCD

In a past blog post, I looked at some of the notable features of the  Common Citation Document (CCD), a free tool where you can view citations from the EPO, USPTO, JPO, and PCT for entire patent families related to a specific patent application. Check out the first blog post for an overview of CCD coverage, search, and display features; you’ll be impressed by the wide range of functions offered by the tool, including multiple panes for viewing lists and patent documents simultaneously and a timeline visualization feature for viewing the timespan for a collection of citations.  One of the most noteworthy traits of the CCD is its customization options for viewing information.  The CCD allows you to control the flow of information and the final output of the citation data, so you are only viewing the data that is relevant to you.  Whether you are a patent examiner who wants a detailed list of citations in the format of a PCT international search report, or you’re a patent searcher looking for a simple, direct list of related prior art, the CCD offers viewing options that meet many types of user needs.

Continue reading to learn about the flexible options for viewing patent citation data on the CCD!

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An Incredible Free Patent Citation Search and Analysis Tool: The CCD

Citation search and analysis tools are available in many subscription patent databases; PatBase allows users to view both patent and non-patent literature citations for entire patent families, and users can view the citations graphically through “citation trees.” A July 2011 update to PatBase added the additional features of a citation timeline and citation line graph.

Wouldn’t it be fantastic if there was a patent citation tool, with similar functions to the PatBase citation features, that was also free?  Thanks to the EPO, JPO, and USPTO, such a tool now exists.  The Common Citation Document (CCD) allows users to view documents cited by the EPO, USPTO, JPO, and PCT citations for patent families related to a specific patent application.  The CCD application includes the capability to view full-text of cited patent documents, the division of cited documents in a list by source of citation and connection to a specific patent application, the category of relevance for EPO citations,  a compilation of “classifications and fields searched” for an entire patent family, and a timeline view to illustrate the time span for a collection of citations.

Read on for a detailed description of the coverage, features, and functions of the CCD application!

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