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On this special episode of Danny Rooney, Danny tries to do something he has never done before…be serious.
Today, I want to give a quick refresher on how to use two patent search systems together to find results quickly and easily. This information may be entry level for patent search experts, such as those over at our parent company Landon IP, but it’s always good to brush up on the basics.
Most major stand-alone search engines are great at searching large quantities of patent data, but it is sometimes difficult to quickly and easily find a patent document representative of a particular prior art genre, especially if the art uses plenty of vague terms (think of generic terms like “member,” “mechanism,” or “surface”). Say, for instance, we have a widget that we are going to search for, and only have some simple data like a drawing, some claims and a brief description. If we enter those basic terms into a major patent search system, we could get lucky and something related may show up immediately, but for anything complex, that is often not the case.
Read more to find out how blending Google Patents in to the early stages of our search can save us time and help narrow our results.
If we use Google Patents for our initial searching, we can enter a number of search terms and quickly look through a number of results (both in keyword-in-context excerpts and representative images). If our initial query is not quite on point, then we can try different variations over and over until we find a few documents to our liking. The main strength of Google Patents is the powerful search engine and sometimes uncanny relevancy rankings that can more quickly display good prior art. The disadvantage to Google Patents is that it lacks many of the advanced searching capabilities of other more professional tools, and certainly lacks the breadth of coverage of those systems as well.
If we then import those Google-found document numbers into our main search engine, we can easily identify relevant classes and sub-classes, look up terms related to the art, and citation search our initial documents. In most cases, for searches that do not provide enough initial information, I have found this method to be much more efficient at finding relevant art from which to base my search, than by using the main search engine exclusively.
Of course, this method can be adjusted and tailored to your specific project, but hopefully this gives you an idea of how you can use the strengths of two different search engines to your advantage to save time in the beginning of your search, in order that you deliver a higher quality search to your customer in the end.
Next time: The real Danny is found locked in the office closet, wondering who this serious imposter is.
Find previous writings and musings from the off-kilter Danny Rooney here.
This post was contributed by Registered Patent Agent Dan Wolka and edited by Chris Jagalla. The Intellogist blog is provided for free by Intellogist’s parent company, Landon IP, a major provider of patent search, technical translation, and information services.