Entries in "Patents" ( for this category only)

Patent Searching Basics Class

For the Case community...
Looking for patent information and do not know where to start? Consider participating in the CaseLearns class called "Patent Research: Basic Search Techniques" at 2 p.m.,Tuesday, October 30 in the Kelvin Smith Library. This course will introduce simple patent terminology and basic search techniques. Register on the CaseLearns web site to participate.

Do Patented Items Make Money

Michael Fitzgerald (The New York Times, July 15, 2007) shares the views of lawyers, economists, and inventors on whether the current U.S. patent laws help or discourage innovation.

For example, James Bessen (lecturer at Boston University’s law school) has demonstrated that patent litigation costs are almost twice as high as the profits from the patented items. He is working on a forthcoming book that will document his findings and theories. Some researchers have suggested his profit estimates are too low.

The article also discusses solutions to modifying or demolishing the current patent system. For example, the USPTO is experimenting with public, open commenting to help patent examiners.

Patent Fetcher

Patent Fetcher is another one of those sites that retrieves U.S. patents for you and allows it to be downloaded as a single PDF document. It is one of the various free services that allows a user to bypass the USPTO's one-page-at-a-time-TIFF patents.

U.S. Patents - 2006 in Review

Michael White at The Patent Librarian's Notebook summarized the results of 2006 in U.S. patents. He says 2006 was a record-breaking year for patents and pre-grant publications.

Fourth Annual Inventors Forum - Patent Law 101

The Technology Transfer Office will present the second seminar of the 4th annual Inventors Forum speaker series on Thursday, October 12th, 2006 at 4:00 PM in Wolstein Auditorium. The seminar, titled "Patent Law 101 (and 102, 103, and 112)" will feature J.T. Kalnay, attorney with the law firm of McDonald Hopkins Co., LPA and Mr. Don Brown, CEO of Arteriocyte, Inc.

If you would like to attend this seminar, please RSVP at the Inventors Forum website by clicking the link below:

WHO: CASE Technology Transfer Office
WHAT: Fourth Annual Inventors Forum - "Patent Law 101 (and 102, 103, and 112)"
WHEN: Thursday, October 12th, 2006, 4:00-5:00PM, A reception will follow the seminar from 5:00-6:00 PM with refreshments
WHERE: Wolstein Auditorium, Wolstein Research Building

USPTO Bans Wikipedia

Business Week (9/4/2006 Issue 3999, p12) has reported that the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) will no longer accept Wikipedia entries as "accepted sources of information". I am wondering why the practice was allowed in the first place.

The Patent Librarian conducted his own analysis to see how much the practice was utilized.

[VIA: The Patent Librarian's Notebook, September 10, 2006]

The Case community can find various sources of the Business Week article from the E-Journal Portal.

4th Annual Inventor's Forum Speaker Series at Case

Case's Technology Transfer Office will present the first installment of the fourth annual Inventor's Forum speaker series. This year's series will kickoff at 4 p.m. Thursday, September 14, in the Wolstein Auditorium in the Wolstein Research Building. The topic will be "Technology Transfer 101." Speakers are Michael Haag, director of biomedical licensing, and Mark Smith, professor of pathology. For additional information or to RSVP, call 368-6104 or go to the Inventor's Forum Web site at http://ora.ra.cwru.edu/techtransfer/pages/forum.htm.

Patent Granted to Blackboard Will Face Challenges

Blackboard Inc. has been awarded a patent making claims that it created some of the basic features of the software that powers online education. Others argue that the patent covers principles that were obvious to everyone. Will virtual education or Blackboard be rattled by this development?

United States Patent: 6,988,138 (PDF Download)
January 17, 2006
Internet-based Education Support System and Methods

A system and methods for implementing education online by providing institutions with the means for allowing the creation of courses to be taken by students online, the courses including assignments, announcements, course materials, chat and whiteboard facilities, and the like, all of which are available to the students over a network such as the Internet. Various levels of functionality are provided through a three-tiered licensing program that suits the needs of the institution offering the program. In addition, an open platform system is provided such that anyone with access to the Internet can create, manage, and offer a course to anyone else with access to the Internet without the need for an affiliation with an institution, thus enabling the virtual classroom to extend worldwide.

Alcorn; Robert L. (Arlington, VA), Cane; Daniel E. (Washington, DC), Chasen; Michael L. (Washington, DC), Chi; Timothy R. (Fairfax, VA), Gilfus; Stephen R. (Woodbridge, VA), Perian; Scott (Washington, DC), Pittinsky; Matthew L. (Washington, DC)

Assignee: Blackboard Inc. (Washington, DC)

Appl. No.: 09/608,208

Filed: June 30, 2000

Japanese Science Directory

Science Links Japan is a topically arranged directory of online information resources for science and technology in Japan. Japan's scientific and technical information (STI) scattered across or isolated on the Internet have been collected and categorized under major topics. The Website aims to provide ease of access to Japan's STI for non-Japanese researchers, policy makers and many others who need Japan's STI.

Most of the contents come from information generated/compiled in the public sector, such as the government, universities, R&D institutes and STI institutes.

Science Links Japan has been compiled with a sharp focus on URL resources available in the English language. URL resources available only in the Japanese language also have been selected from the viewpoint of comprehensiveness and importance.


FreePatentsOnline.com provides fast, free access to all U.S. patents and patent applications, partial European data, free PDF downloading, free account features, and more. In addition, a user can can establish a free account that allows for saving searches, creating portfolios of documents, saving comments on documents, and getting notified when new patents of interest are published.

FreePatentsOnline.com is a great alternative to the single page Tiff downloads at the USPTO web site.

Universities and Patents

Chemical & Engineering News highlights the annual list of U.S. universities receiving the most patents for inventions by the United States Patent & Trademark Office. University of California ranked #1 for the 12th year in a row with 390 awarded patents. MIT was 2nd with 136 patents. See USPTO press release for more information.

Patent Search Guides

The Patent Librarian (Michael White) has created two guides to assist in patent searching: U.S. Patent Classification - Classes by Title and U.S. Patent Number Guide.

From Michael White:

Both guides are based on the laminated "quick study" guides sold in college bookstores and shops. The classes by title guide is simply an alphabetical list of current US classes. The group symbols that appear after each title are based on the placement of the class or its subclasses in the "Classes Within the U.S. Patent Classification Arranged by Related Subjects," which is part of the manual of Classification. Cross-reference classes are also noted.

The patent number guide is compiled from many sources including the Manual of Patent Examining Procedure, USPTO web site, WIPO standards, Official Gazette and National Archives publications.

CaseLearns Workshop - Basic Patent Searching

CaseLearns Workshop - Basic Patent Searching
March 8, 2006, 11:30am-1:30pm
Kelvin Smith Library 215
Registration required at http://library.case.edu/caselearns/

This course will introduce simple patent terminology and basic search techniques. You will be able to locate patents of interest and utilize some of the freely available resources to attain copies of patents from the United States or other countries.

Session perfect for engineering or business students needing patents for research assignments.

Contact me if you have questions:
Brian C. Gray, MLIS
Librarian - Engineering, Math, & Statistics
Email: brian.c.gray@case.edu
Blog: http://blog.case.edu/bcg8/
Engineering Reading Room: http://library.case.edu/ksl/engineering/
Phone: (216)368-8685

7 Million U.S. Patents

UPDATE: The Patent Librarian reports that the U.S. has issued patent 7,000,000 on February 14, 2006 to DuPont.

The Patent Librarian blog tells us that next week the United States may be issuing patent number 7,000,000. Michael White also looked up the topics and years of the patents issued on the first few million landmarks.

What is most impressive is how long it takes to issue this many patents and how fast patents numbers are growing. Take a look.


Annual List of Top 10 Organizations Receiving Most U.S. Patents

On January 10, 2006, the United States Patent & Trademark Office released the Annual List of Top 10 Organizations Receiving Most U.S. Patents. International Business Machines Corporation was #1.

(Courtesy of the ResourceShelf, January 11, 2006.)

The Patent Librarian

Michael White has started a new blog, called The Patent Librarian. The blog was started in November and I look forward to watching it grow. One of the neat features is Michael's posts that show just how busy the USPTO is during a given time period. His sidebar of patent links is also a great resource.

Patent Information Users Group Annual Meeting (2006)

The Patent Information Users Group (PIUG) has put out a call for papers for its 2006 Annual Meeting in Minneapolis, May 20-25. Formed in 1988, PIUG is a volunteer organization for patent information professionals dedicated to the improvement of the retrieval, analysis and dissemination of patent information worldwide.

One of the themes of this year's conference is the role of patents in academic research, teaching and technology transfer. In the last 20 years the number of patents granted to universities and public research institutions has increased dramatically. The National Science Foundation notes in its Science and Engineering Indicators 2004 that while the output of scientific publications has been relatively flat in the U.S. since 1992, the number of academic patents and citations to patents in scholarly articles has increased ten-fold. Although there is much debate on the value of patents as a means of disseminating scholarly research, patents are increasingly important to the worldwide academic community. This session will explore how patent information is being used by university researchers, instructors, librarians and technology transfer officers.

Possible topics include:

  • Patent information services and collections
  • Profiles of academic patent information users
  • Collaboration and cooperation between university libraries and tech transfer offices
  • Patent information education, training and tutorials
  • New tools and technologies for delivering patent information, e.g. in-house databases, RSS feeds, Blogs
  • Searching patents in literature databases such as SciFinder Scholar
  • Academic patenting, licensing and commercialization philosophies

I encourage you to submit a proposal for this or any other session. Instructions for submitting a proposal are at the end of this message. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about PIUG or the scope of the session. The deadline for submitting a proposal is January 30, 2006.

Thank you,
Michael White
Co-Chair, Patent Information in Academia - 2006 PIUG Conference

Michael J. White, Librarian for Research Services, BA, MLIS
Engineering and Science Library
Douglas Library Bldg., Room 516
Queen's University
93 University Ave., Kingston, Ontario K7L 5C4
(613) 533-6785 / (613) 533-2584 (fax)

Continue reading "Patent Information Users Group Annual Meeting (2006)"

Patent Application for Storylines Pending

It appears that potentially the United States Patent & Trademark Office and our court system may be deciding the future of literature, movies, and other forms of entertainment. A person has filed a patent application for a specific storyline.

The published application can be viewed at the USPTO web site.

See some on going commentary and discussion at Groklaw.

Supreme Court to Look at What can be Patented

The Supreme Court will hear the case of Laboratory Corp. of America (LabCorp) v. Metabolite Laboratories. The specific patent being questioned is US 4,940,658 (July 10, 1990), titled Assay for sulfhydryl amino acids and methods for detecting and distinguishing cobalamin and folic acid deficency.

Method for determining levels of sulfhydryl amino acids, particularly total homocysteine levels in samples of body tissue from warm-blooded animals, methods of detecting cobalamin and folic acid deficiency using an assay for total homocysteine levels, and methods for distinguishing cobalamin from folic acid deficiency using an assay for total homocysteine levels in conjunction with an assay for methylmalonic acid.

Depending on how the Supreme Court resolves this case, it may have substantial implications for the patentability of business methods and even of software. See this blog for more information and a legal perspective of what could happen.

Patent Searching Basics

Here is the link to the Research Guide I have created to help when searching for patents. At the bottom of the page, you will find a link to the CaseLearns workshop on Patent Searching Basics from October 2005.

USPTO Improves Process For Reviewing Patents

The Virtual Chase shared a link to a recent U.S. Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) press release describing timeliness and quality improvements in the patent examination process.

[TVC Alert, 1 August 2005, Ballard Spahr Andrews & Ingersoll, LLP, http://www.virtualchase.com/tvcalert/transfer.asp?xmlFile=aug05/1aug05.xml]

Patent Reform Bill Introduced

As reported on the American Chemical Society web site, a patent reform bill (Patent Reform Act of 2005, H.R. 2795) has been introduced in the House of Representatives. The most drastic change introduced by the bill would change the United States patent system into a "first to file" rather than the "first to invent" system. The process of "first to file" is similar to the European and Japan systems.