New on JSTOR: Books and Expanded Free Content!

JSTOR is a subscription-based online archive of journal articles and scholarly content, produced by not-for-profit organization ITHAKA, which may be one useful source of non-patent literature prior art for professional patent searchers. The site has recently undergone some major updates to the content coverage and accessibility of select journal articles within the archives, and patent searchers will benefit from the new types of prior art that can be accessed on the portal and the expanded free content on the site. Last year, JSTOR began offering limited free online content through the the Register and Read program, which was released in beta-testing phase during early 2012.  As of January 2013, JSTOR has greatly expanded the number of journals accessible through the Register and  Read program to more than 1,200 titles. JSTOR also recently added digital book coverage to the portal through the new Books on JSTOR program, and currently more than 15,000 scholarly books can now be searched simultaneously with the journal content on the platform.  Prior art searchers will therefore have access to a broader array of non-patent literature prior art formats that can be searched on a single intuitive interface, and more of the journal content is now freely accessible for registered users.

Continue reading for an overview of new free content accessible through the JSTOR Register and Read program, and also learn about the scholarly books now available on the JSTOR platform!

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Big Changes at Public Library of Science Help Prior Art Searchers

Public Library of Science  (PLOS) is a publisher of seven peer-reviewed and open-access journals which users can search through an online portal that has recently undergone some major renovations. I first looked at the PLOS network back in April 2012, and I concluded that PLOS is another useful non-patent literature resource that professional patent searchers can utilize during an extensive prior art search, especially in the biomedical field. Since April 2012, the PLOS portal has seen some big changes to the appearance, search, and navigation features of the site, including a makeover to the visual appearance of the network in July 2012 and a redesign of all PLOS journals in December 2012. Herve Basset of the Science Intelligence and InfoPros blog recently announced the December 2012 redesign of the PLOS network, so I decided to jump over to the portal and take a look at the updated search and navigation options, including new metrics data and alert options for registered users.

Read on for an overview of recent changes implemented to enhance the usability, access to key information, and navigation on the PLOS network!

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A Network of Open Access Search Platforms from Springer

The major scientific publisher Springer Science+Business Media operates a number of online search platforms which allow users to access bibliographic and full-text data about journal articles and other media published by Springer.  A past Intellogist Blog post reviewed the continuously updated SpringerReference resource, and the publisher also provides the popular SpringerLink search platform as a free online tool. SpringerLink is free to search, but many of the articles and books listed on the platform are only fully accessible behind a pay wall.  Springer also has created a network of fully open-access search portals, and unlike SpringerLink, all content on these platforms are completely free to access.  These open-access Springer portals can provide valuable non-patent literature (NPL) prior art for patent searchers and may serve as a useful supplement to searches of subscription NPL portals and government-funded systems like PubMed.

Continue reading to learn about the coverage, search and viewing features of four Springer open-access portals: BioMed Central, Springer Open, Chemistry Central, and the Cases Database.

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A Centralized Portal to Free Biomedical Literature: Europe PubMed Central

I was recently alerted to the Europe PubMed Central portal by a post on the Science Intelligence and InfoPros blog, where Herve Basset describes the site as “not only a new Medline“:

Unlike PubMed Central, Europe PMC provides a single point of access to not only full-text articles but additionally the abstracts available through PubMed. The Europe PMC interface also offers novel features and functionality, including links to other relevant content, integrated text and data mining tools and grant reporting services through Europe PMC plus.

Europe PubMed Central is a portal created by the the European Bioinformatics Institute, The University of Manchester (Mimas and NaCTeM), and the British Library (in cooperation with the with the National Center for Biotechnology Information at the U.S. National Library of Medicine), which allows users to search a variety of open access biomedical literature. The portal lists coverage of the following publications:

  • PubMed abstracts (about 22 million)
  • Europe PMC full text articles (about 2.2 million, of which over 400,000 are Open Access)
  • Patent abstracts (over 4 million European, US, and International)
  • National Health Service (NHS) clinical guidelines
  • Agricola records (500,000)
  • Supplemented with Chinese Biological Abstracts and the Citeseer database.

Read on for an overview of how to search Europe PubMed Central to locate open-access biomedical literature, patent abstracts, and even grant information!

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Free Scientific Journals from Latin America on SciELO


Patent searchers can locate a wide variety of international non-patent literature during global prior art searches by using open-access (OA) resources. Both DOAJ and OpenDOAR provide access to international open-access journals and repositories.  Another example of an international OA resource is SciELO, an open-access network of Latin American and Caribbean-based scientific journals.  SciELO provides users free access to Spanish and Portuguese-language journal articles that cover a broad range of scientific topics, and the contents of SciELO can be searched through an English-language interface.

Continue reading to learn the search and viewing options available on SciELO!
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My Favorite Open Access Resources: OpenDOAR


Recently, I highlighted one of my favorite Open Access (OA) resources that allows users to search through a global directory of OA journals, the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).  The DOAJ isn’t alone, though, in its designation as a central OA directory.  The Directory of Open Access Repositories (OpenDOAR) is free tool that aids users in locating OA repositories for institutions and organizations around the world.  OpenDOAR allows users to search by keyword or browse by country through a list of over 2,000 freely accessible and full-text databases containing a wide range of non-patent literature (NPL) prior art, ranging from research papers to theses and dissertations. OpenDOAR also includes a Google Custom search form that may be used to search through the contents of all listed repositories simultaneously.  During a global, comprehensive prior art search, the OpenDOAR directory will be an invaluable starting point for searchers hunting for obscure NPL prior art.

Read on to learn more about the content, search, and viewing features available on OpenDOAR!

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My Favorite Open Access Resources: DOAJ

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens are not a few of my favorite things (probably not even in the top 10), but I can say with certainty that one of my favorite things is Open Access (OA), as I’ve illustrated in past blog posts.  These past posts discuss open access resources ranging from university repositories to OA sections of subscription databases. Today I’ll highlight a central directory that allows users to locate thousands of available OA journals, the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) .  Patent searchers can utilize this resource to locate obscure prior art from all over the world during comprehensive patent searches, and almost all prior art located through DOAJ is full text and freely accessible.

After the jump, learn about the open access coverage and search options available on DOAJ!
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Search Free Peer-Reviewed Scientific Journals Through PLoS

Open Access depositories and online journals are an excellent free source of non-patent literature (NPL) prior art.  Today I’d like to highlight a popular open access publisher that I first heard about through a  CHMINF listserv discussion: the Public Library of Science (PLoS).  PLoS describes itself as “a non-profit publisher, membership, and advocacy organization,”  and PLoS produces seven peer-reviewed online journals that users can search and view for free.  PLoS also produces a number of Currents, blogs, Hubs, and Collections, which discuss or aggregate content around specific scientific topics.

Continue reading to learn about the open access content produced by PLoS, and we’ll also look at how you can search through this NPL content!

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An Open Access Marvel: The Social Science Research Network

 It’s no secret that I love open access resources.  Open access (OA) repositories are a particularly valuable resource, since they allow researchers to share working versions of their papers and also give students and fellow researchers free access to current knowledge in their fields.  I recently found a particularly useful OA repository through the Written Description blog by Lisa Larrimore Ouellette, who has published a series of interesting posts about the “Top 10  IP Paper Downloads” from the Social Science Research Network (SSRN).

What useful resources are available through SSRN, and (more importantly) how can IP professionals use SSRN to locate relevant prior art?  Read on to find out!
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Open Access and Universities: A Hidden NPL Treasure, Part 2

The last post illustrated the benefits and controversies behind Open Access (OA) publishing.  The OA movement provides users with free access to scholarly literature usually behind expensive pay-walls, but OA has also created predatory publishers who exploit article authors that are willing to pay a fee to publish their work.  How can you avoid the low-quality websites created by predatory OA publishers?  One method of locating quality OA literature, including journal articles, theses, and technical reports, is to visit an Open Access university repository.

After the jump, we’ll look at three examples of OA repositories: Harvard’s DASH, Dspace@MIT, and University of Maryland’s DRUM.  I’ll also do a test search to see what kind of NPL I can find in an OA university repository!

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