Invalidation Search – Spelling Mistakes

July 24, 2008

Can anyone search this blog with its name (“My Search Strategies“)


How can you reach here if you want to? forget about the other keywords that might bring you to this place

Any idea why?

Spelling mistakes!!

This is the major reason why we and the examiners miss out lots of relevant prior art.

While choosing the name of the blog I mistyped as I was in a hurry and even after wordpress confirming the name from me 3 times I missed it (happens). Similarly, there are various patents that include such misspelled words that get missed out even after multiple quality checks.

Now next time when you search keep all possible spelling variations in mind and include all possible word variations in your (keystrings or keystrngs or keystings or kystrings).

I cracked on invalidation using this strategy. If I would have not used it, I would have never been able to identify that hidden patent!!!

“Invalidation is an art not a science”

Patent Invalidation Search – Audio Video Search

May 13, 2009


Knocking out a patent is not at all an easy task. What you require is a very focused and constantly new ways to look for buried patents that cannot be reached using conventional techniques.

All around the world people are using keyboards to search for prior-art. Why can’t we can talk to search for relevant results. Now it looks too much

Yes we can!!!..

Audio Search.

Well we have already discussed about searching in YouTube and other Video search engines. Yes, these are very good techniques but they are again limited by keyword based search.

However, there are still ways you can catch what people are saying in these videos.


Blinkx technology listens to the speech track of a given video, identifying and extracting speech tags that represent key words and phrases spoken within the video. These tags complement text metadata tags, improving the description of the video and lighting up as the corresponding words are spoken in the video. The speech tags can be used to navigate – both within the video, allowing users to jump directly to the point in a video that a word is spoken, and also from the video, as a starting point to find other relevant videos.

2) Snipp.TV

Snipp.TV has designed a user interface that addresses the unique needs of multimedia search:
1) Provides for quick results-sorting based on Spoken Tags* 
2) Enables users to see "snippets" of multimedia content that includes the spoken words they were looking for
3) Provides a summarized textual representation of key words in the audio track and textual data about the file.

3) Google Audio Indexing

Google has also come up with a similar concept, but its in experimental stage and the search is only limited to videos related to Politics. I hope in future it could act as one of the biggest Audio/Video search engine.

Do remember in Patent Invalidation the idea is to identify Bang-on results!!! Traditional strategies are not going to help.

So go and get creative.. and crack every invalidation that you get.

Patent Invalidation Search – Non Patent Literature Search Tool – Viewzi

May 13, 2009

Ask any researcher to provide you with non-patent literature instead of patent literature and he will

Its difficult to hunt for non-patent literature instead of patent literature and this is because of many reasons.

  • Non-patent world is not yet structured as patent world
  • Non-availability of good search interfaces
  • Non-availability of single interface for search
  • Difficult to find publication (date) information of non-patent publications
  • and many others…

We have talked about one non-patent search strategy which uses Google Timeline.

Another good way of analyzing non-patent is through Viewzi. Viewzi provides a preview of the dates of the web pages, which helps a lot in quickly browsing through the results.

For example, if you are searching for something related to Multi-touch screen technology, you would get results something like this:


Its easy to navigate and provides more results per page for review. A very good source for non-patent search in patent invalidation search. This can also be very useful in patentability or novelty searches.

Moreover, if Viewzi is used in landscape analysis it can provide useful information about the market and companies/authors that are active in the domain.

A very useful tool in all kind of analysis related to patents.

Patent Invalidation Search – Addiction to Web

May 8, 2009


There are a lot of people who are involved in Web based tools for patent searching. I guess its not actually addiction to web but people become addicted to one kind of interface.

Its too difficult to separate one person from one database to another. So why not have a system which is quick. easy and simple and eliminate the need of a browser. You are free to change the Interface according to your own need.

Then I came across a new free tool from IPEXL ‘Excel Client’. This is a desktop based tool which is capable of performing search on various databases.

The best part that I liked about it was its reach to Taiwan and China.

Moreover, since the results are displayed in excel you can easily modify its interface to keep Title, Abstract and Claims together for speedy analysis. OR filter the results with the help of IPC etc.


I believe this should be a boon for the people who use USPTO. A very good tool for Patentability Search, Novelty search, Freedom-to-Operate searches and not to forget patent invalidation searches.

Moreover, people can use it to perform a quick landscape analysis as well. Since all the patents are in Excel one can use the inbuilt charting capabilities of Excel to draw quick charts.

You can download the tool here

Patent Invalidation Search – Wikipedia Timeline

April 9, 2009

In an invalidation search its been very difficult to look for non-patent stuff before a particular year, lets say before 1994. We have already discussed few strategies, such as Google timeline etc., but as I always say  – New strategies and sources should be constantly evolved.

Another very useful method for non-patent literature in patent invalidations search could be information about the History of a particular technology available in Wikipedia.

For example, if you are invalidating some patent that relates to Virtual Learning, then a good way to start would be to look here:

History of virtual learning environments

Though Wikipedia cannot be used as a reliable source but it provides enough hints that may help the researcher to reach to an authentic page.

Patent Invalidation Search – Patent Translation

April 4, 2009

Invalidation Search is never complete without looking at non-English patents.

Many people face difficulties in analyzing these patents so they never search and analyze.

If you speak English then you may find it difficult to analyze German patents. BUT we can analyze them using different translation tools, such as

The above translation schemes are used by many people in the industry. So there is nothing new.

However, there is a better translation available by Windows Live.

The best part of this translation feature is that it is integrated in the browser (IE) toolbar. So while you are analyzing/searching patents in other jurisdictions, just by a click of a button you will get their translation in your preferred language.


Further, it provides a unique interface where the user can see the input and output simultaneously.


This according to me enhances the speed of analysis. Though, I believe for most people the interface may not make much difference as the main interest is to analyze the translated text and showing the original text may not be useful.

However, this sometimes provides you with new words that can later be used in key strings to obtain patents of other language.

So use patent search in German, French and in any other language you desire. Also, get relevant keywords in other languages to obtain more relevant patents.

Invalidation Search – Competitive Search Strategy – Alternative Resource

March 5, 2009


How can you churn out the relevant patents from the thousands of patents appearing on the keyword search string given by you?

A big question.

Probably you would refine your search string. May be you would add more keywords or try your Boolean Search String skills. Here is the catch if you do it this way you might miss out on the patents in disguise or the one which could have accomplished your patent invalidation search. By “patents in disguise” I want to point to the patents which are relevant but the patent author has tried his best to keep it hidden from you through his vocabulary. I am sure you would agree that writing patent is an art. And an artist is skilled enough to show or hide whatever he intends to. 

So we used to use “Competitive Search Strategy”. There are various ways in which this strategy has been used by researchers. Some other strategies have also been discussed in this blog earlier that deals with popular competitors (easy to identify).

Next question that must be coming to your mind is “How to identify the not so popular big companies?” Don’t worry you have someone who will do this job for you. “Visiobrand – search engine visual market for brands and links to their official web-sites. Hence Visiobrand gets you well structured and organized information which your normal search engine can’t get you. For example, if you consider electronics, you would find well organized structure for Electronics companies.

Invalidation Search – Do you know?

October 16, 2008

Here’s a simple quiz:

Do you read TechCrunch?
Do you read about Killer Startups?
Do you read more than five blogs a day?
Do you have an RSS reader?
Do you know how to build and share a simple spreadsheet using Google Docs?
Do you know what Google is coming up next?
Do you know what is the latest feature Blackberry/iPhone is introducing?
Do have a shortcut for sending mail to the six co-workers you usually write to?
Do you have a blog?
Do you know how to download a file from the internet through FTP?
Do you back up your work?
Do you keep track of patents using a digital tool?
Are you able to find what you’re looking for on Google most of the time?
Do you use anti-virus software?
Do you fall for internet hoaxes and forward stuff to friends and then regret it?

Can you imagine someone who works in a factory that processes metal not knowing how to use a blowtorch?

How can you imagine yourself as a highly-paid patent analyst and not know how to do these things…

Change yourself and you will see how your client reaction changes…

For us we don’t have to search for 80% of the projects to find out is it patentable or not.

Knowledge helps you in everything!!

Invalidation Search – Anticipation & Obviousness

October 14, 2008


To invalidate a patent it is very important to understand that what comes under Anticipation and what comes under Obviousness.

Under the Patent Act, inventors may obtain patents for their inventions provided they are “new and useful”. While “useful” (i.e., the requirement of utility) is a broadly construed concept that presents a low threshold for inventors to clear, the requirement that inventions be “new” is the more demanding hurdle that is articulated as both novelty and non-obviousness. An invention is not novel, i.e., it is anticipated, if every limitation of the claimed invention is found, explicitly or inherently, within a single reference.

If no single reference contains every such limitation, an invention may still be unpatentable if every limitation can be found across a combination of references where one of ordinary skill (in the relevant art) would have reason to combine such references to arrive at the claimed invention. Stated in this manner, novelty is essentially framed as a “subset” of the broader concept of obviousness — the special case in which all of the elements of an invention are found in a single reference instead of across multiple references. As a consequence, if a reference anticipates an invention, it necessarily renders such invention obvious as well. Anticipation becomes, as put by the oft-repeated maxim, the “epitome of obviousness.”

Detailed explanation with cases can be read here

Dennis with PatentlyO fame has also explained it in a very easy manner here

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Invalidation Search – Diversification

October 13, 2008

Today I thought that why don’t I diversify my search strategies to other areas of IP.

There are lots of areas where we use our strategies to identify hidden data. So from now I would be diversifying the posts in the fields of:

  • Patent Valuation
  • Patent Licensing
  • White Space Mapping
  • Patent Portfolio Analysis
  • Competitive Analysis
  • Landscape Analysis
  • Patent Drafting etc.

This field is so interesting that my mind can’t stop thinking of new ways of doing the old things.

People who love to think, this is the field for you.

Invalidation Search – Prior Art not the Only Way

August 31, 2008

I hope we have already discussed about few methods of invalidation here

I have been repeatedly focussing on the point that prior art search is not the only way of invalidating a patent. So I thought of summaring all the ways that can lead to invalidation of a patent:

● Maintenance fees aren’t paid
● It can be proved that the patent either (a) fails adequately to teach how to make and use the invention (b) improperly describes the invention (c) contains claims that are legally inadequate (one example has been earlier described here)
● One or more prior art references (earlier patents or other publications) are uncovered which show that the invention of the patent wasn’t new or wasn’t different enough when the invention was made the patent owner is involved in certain defined type of illegal conduct, that is, commit antitrust or other violations connected with the patent
● The patent applicant commited fraud on the Patent Office by failing to disclose material information, such as relevant prior art references, to the patent office during the period when the patent application was pending.

Thanks to Patent it Yourself for providing a ready summary. A very nice book for inventors (I must say).

Therefore, the analyst who is conducting the search should not limit his mind to identifying prior art references but he can also identify other facts that can contribute towards invalidation.

Happy Hunting!!…


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