Documenting the state
of technology (the "prior art")
The importance of a thorough document
search cannot be overstated. Searches can be invaluable aids to decision
making in the intellectual property field, primarily
on issues relating to invention novelty, patent validity, infringement and
right to practice.
Many times, technology searching can provide conclusive proof of the existence of known technologies. The
existence (or lack) of relevant prior art can often be a reliable indicator
of the likelihood of success or failure in the Patent Office, in the federal
courts and in the marketplace. For example, a good document search may
discover published documents, for example U.S. patents, foreign patents and
technical journal articles that can be used defensively to prove the
invalidity of a
patent that is being asserted by one competitor against another.
The first step in performing a productive
search is to define the "target" and pinpoint exactly what is being sought.
Thus, technical knowledge is crucial in helping the searcher to visualize
the target, so that on beginning the search and entering the document
collection, the searcher can immediately focus his attention on the target
(e.g., by using the right combination of keywords) and thoroughly screen the
most relevant documents.
Once the technical features of interest
have crystallized into an image of the target, the searcher must know where
to look for the information and how to utilize the database tools that are
at his disposal. There are many public and private database companies
that specialize in patent-related publications as well as general scientific
and technical publications. In order to perform comprehensive but
efficient searches, it is important to have good working knowledge of the
data bases that are at hand.
All of our technology searches are performed using carefully selected
database collections (proprietary as well as public) that enable us to
perform keyword searches efficiently and effectively. See
Patent Search Investigations to learn
to Patent Search Investigations
LINK to Patent Technologies
Contact the lawyers at
Griggs Bergen LLP to schedule a confidential
consultation with a registered patent attorney.