PATENTSCOPE: Better free patent searching with new system upgrades

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The WIPO PATENTSCOPE team has been very busy in the past month, releasing two big updates. The changes include better search functionality, a friendlier user interface (UI), and a fun analysis feature.

PATENTSCOPE is quickly rivaling Espacenet as a free “international” patent search system, for good reasons. The expanding feature set combined with unique coverage makes PATENTSCOPE a system that patent search professionals need to be aware of.

Today we’ll take a look at the latest improvements to this ever-developing free patent search system.

Machine translations to English are now available in PATENTSCOPE. Default translations originate from Google Translate, but alternate machine translation tools such as Microsoft Translator are also available.

Machine translations can be accessed through a distinct module, or within the search result area. The Translation Assistant module takes source text and translates:

  • English to French
  • French to English
  • English to Chinese
  • Chinese to English
machine translation in PATENTSCOPE

The machine translation is available directly next to applicable records.

IPC tooltips are now available to display classification information.

This helpful UI improvement allows users to display IPC information without having to load a separate window.

IPC tooltip

The IPC tooltip also displays relevant hierarchical information.

Search response time has been improved. In moving to the newest version of the LUCENE search engine, response times have been notably improved. This allows users to quickly change and iterate their queries.

The NEAR operator has been extended to allow combination with other Boolean operators, and proximity distance can now be specified. For example, NEAR3 specifies a distance of 3 or less between two terms. This enhanced proximity searching functionality is usually reserved for commercial patent search systems, so this is a nice addition for the savvy searcher.

Improved highlighting including hit maps, stemming, and fuzzy searching support. Keyword highlighting is immensely useful for patent searchers looking to find the “meat” of a patent quicker. For this reason, patent highlighting maps are a great tool to help searchers scan the document.

improved highlighting in PATENTSCOPE

The hit map is a quick way to see where higher confluences of keywords exist.

The Query Tree function automatically executes subsections of search strings and generates a statistical breakdown. This feature is useful to quickly pinpoint any parts of a search query that may be causing “bottlenecking,” in turn leading to a drastic reduction in results. This may offer insight into a keyword that needs to be broadened (by alternate terms, stemming, or truncation) in order to increase the number of hits. Conversely, this feature can be used to highlight which parts of the query may be too broad, if specificity is of the essence.

a query tree

Query trees can be used to analyze the searcher’s own search strategy. How meta!

The PATENTSCOPE team over at WIPO should be commended for the new features and tweaks they’ve implemented over the past month (let alone all the previous improvements!).

Do you use PATENTSCOPE? What do you think they should add next? Let us know in the comments below!

Patent Searches from Landon IP

This post was contributed by Intellogist Team member Chris Jagalla. The Intellogist blog is provided for free by Intellogist’s parent company Landon IP, a major provider of patent searches, trademark searches, technical translations, and information retrieval services.

3 Responses

  1. Dear blogger,

    I believe by doing improvement they disabled earlier RSS feeds


  2. thanks for this very interesting post! totally agree about patentscope, with the recent improvements it has gained more and more functionality you usually only see in commercial databases. the only downside for me in comparison with esp@cenet is the patent coverage which is still much lower than esp@cenet..

  3. […] – The Intellogist Blog previously explored three of the search systems (Global Brand Database, PATENTSCOPE, and WIPO Lex) available through the WIPO GOLD portal, which defines itself as “a one-stop […]

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