USPC-to-CPC Concordance Tool Now Available on the USPTO Website!

On January 1, 2013, the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) completely replaced ECLA, and all US published applications will now carry CPC classifications. The EPO’s Espacenet search system has already added a CPC search tool to its portal, and many subscription-based patent search systems have also integrated the CPC into their US and EP patent records and search options. The official CPC website currently offers an “ECLA to CPC to IPC” concordance table for users who need find a relevant CPC symbol that corresponds to an IPC or ECLA classification symbol.  The USPTO website now offers an additional useful tool to help users locate the correct CPC symbol by searching for a corresponding US Patent Classification (USPC) symbol. With this tool, users can enter any USPC symbol and automatically generate a list of the closest corresponding CPC symbols.

After the jump, Landon IP’s librarian Kristin Whitman provides a brief guide on how to use the “Statistical Mapping from USPC to CPC” concordance tool! Continue reading

Ready or Not, the Cooperative Patent Classification Has Arrived!

The patent world is about to get rocked by the upcoming 2013 roll-out of the new Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC), which will replace both the current US patent classification system and the European patent classification system (ECLA).  This rollout is coming so quickly that after January 1st, 2013, the CPC will completely replace ECLA, and all US published applications (also known as PG-Pubs, or A documents) will carry CPC classifications.

The US Patent and Trademark Office held an External User Day Event on July 10th at the US Patent and Trademark Office in Alexandria, VA.  This event was an opportunity for the USPTO to listen to input and concerns from the patent search community regarding the CPC.  Upon invitation from the USPTO, Landon IP’s Director of Training and Special Projects, Jonathan Skovholt, served on the External User Panel to provide his analysis and comments on the effects of the planned transition.

How will these changes affect you? Read on to learn about the features of the new system, and Jonathan Skovholt’s analysis of its possible effects.

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Update on Cooperative Patent Classification

It’s a little more than a year away, and it’s going to change patent information in a big way.

What is it?

It’s the Cooperative Patent Classification.

Last week the European Patent Office (EPO) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) launched a homepage for the Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC). This important milestone denotes progress on this giant and important project that we continue to be excited about.

Read along as we tell you the state of the CPC, why it’s important, and where we’re headed!

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5 Unique Patents and Their Odd Classifications

This past weekend here in the States we celebrated our independence from our once enemies and now best friends, England (is that where frienemies came from?). As I understand it, the search for independence was started when several Boston residents were going to have a tea party, but were so disappointed when they found out the local tea importer only had English Breakfast tea (and not their preferred Earl Grey) that they dumped all of the tea into the harbor. I’m pretty sure it was that, but maybe it was something to do with taxes (who ever heard of someone upset about taxes?). So let’s turn our attention away from scorn and vitriol in the patent world, and instead celebrate an independence from boringness by finding some of the awesomeness in unique patent classifications and their broad swath of interesting patents.

My goal for this project was two-fold: to find classes and subclasses in the US Classification System that are interesting for some reason, and to find a patent document that represents the uniqueness of that subclass. I hereby present to you five unique patents and their classification.

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Update from PIUG 2011

Well my first full day at PIUG 2011 in Cincinnati, OH is done.  Although I spent a good part of it eating Graeter’s ice cream, the news I learned is so interesting that I just have to share it.

I have fresh-off-the-press updates about Dialog, Innography, WIPO PATENTSCOPE®, PatBase, Derwent World Patents Index and more, so read on!

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5 Reasons Why I’m Passionate About Patent Classification

Yesterday, while having a conversation about a related subject and without much prompting, I went on a several minute filibuster about the future of unified patent classification. The main prompt for this tangent was the latest news (hat tip to The Patent Librarian Blog for the short and sweet PR roundup) that indicates progress toward the new Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) system between the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the European Patent Office (EPO). However, I can’t attribute all of my enthusiasm to the latest news cycle–I had to admit that I’m just a nerd about patent classification. Let me explain why…

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IFI CLAIMS Update and Probable Patent Assignees

IFI CLAIMS® Patent Services has updated the IFI CLAIMS®/U.S. Patents, Uniterm and CDB files, with new assignee name changes, probable assignees, class code revision, and indexing terms. Not familiar with IFI CLAIMS or need a refresher that takes these updates into account? Read on as we look at the benefits of using IFI CLAIMS, including the “probable assignee” field–there’s a hidden gem of patent information you might be missing!

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Unified Patent Classification One Step Closer to Reality

In an effort under the IP5 forum (Five IP Offices) banner, the European Patent Office (EPO) and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) have agreed to move forward on jointly developing a unified patent classification system based on the European Classification system (ECLA). The EPO was tasked with the project of Common Hybrid Classification as one of the ten IP5 projects. We previously covered the Common Search and Examination Support Tools project under the USPTO’s stewardship from the same forum. For more on what this joint patent classification system could mean, read on!

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Learn Practical Patent Analysis: A Case Study (Installment 3)

Patent classifications are the original patent searching tools and remain among the most useful ways to categorize and index related prior art. Classifications, by definition, are groups of patent documents of similar subject matter. Several major patent classification systems exist, including US, IPC, ECLA, Japanese F-Index and F-Term, and DEKLA. In previous posts, we have discussed how patent searching by classification works and why it’s worthwhile. To check out those posts, see parts one and two of the “Classified Information” series.

Patent classifications can be vitally important in conducting a patent analysis project, and today we’ll show you how to utilize classification systems to pare down your pool of patent documents under review in addition to potentially finding new documents of interest.

Last time, in Learn Practical Patent Analysis: A Case Study (Installment 2), we discussed how manual de-duplication can reduce the redundant patent documents returned to us in our first full text search query. Barring that, we discussed how patent families could be used as a de-duplication tool to limit certain closely related patent applications from overwhelming the project: removing family duplicates in the data set is desirable because it reduces the amount of time needed to perform both manual and statistical analysis processes, and it focuses the analysis on the inventive concepts rather than the patent documents. To keep this case study concise and to the point I’ve chosen an automatic family de-duplication process to represent each patent family as one object. The analysis that follows is based on this method, but different patent analysis studies require different methods, a point not lost on our commenters last week.
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Are your classification searches incomplete? (UPDATED)

You may have heard that the US Patent and Trademark Office recently issued two classification orders that affect US classes 210, Liquid Purification or Separation, and 707, Data Processing: Database File Management or Data Structures.  (Michael White over at the Patent Librarian’s Notebook recently had a write-up of the event with some interesting statistics.)  However, searchers beware:  although the classification systems may have been re-designed, the re-classification effort may not yet be completed for these classes. Further complicating matters, your patent search vendor may not have yet received or loaded the new class designations for the affected patents that have been reclassified.
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