Good news for all you inventors who use Google’s patent search tool! Two new features have recently been added that should make your searching experience more productive and your patent application process a bit easier.
Google recently expanded its patent search tool to include European patents and also added the “Prior Art Finder,” which, according to TechCrunch, “automatically scans the web, Google Patents, Google Scholar and Google Books for key phrases from a patent’s text.”
According to Mary Bellis, About.com Guide to Inventors, “Prior art is any body of knowledge that relates to your invention. Prior art would include previous patents, trade journal articles, publications (including data books and catalogs), public discussions, trade shows, or public use or sales anywhere in the world.”
The Prior Art Finder can be used by inventors to help determine and explain the novelty of a patent, a necessary step in requesting patent protection.
And in even better news, Google is still working to perfect not only these recent improvements to the patent search tool but also its current collection of searchable patents.
If you’re thinking of applying for a patent, remember that LegalZoom does offer several different services related to the patent process, including patent searching, creating patent illustrations, and applying for provisional, utility, and design, and patents.
Do you use Google’s patent search tool? Do you have any tips to share?