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cowanrg 24th June 2003 05:34 AM

researching patents?
 
does anyone around here have any idea to find if something is already patented? or at least how to search for existing patents? im trying to make something, and i need to know if its marketable.

bobcat190 24th June 2003 06:00 AM

Hey fellow (want to be) inventor did you try the government? well that the first place i'd look. government.com i guess (not a fan) if not stay up tell 3AM and watch network tv i see tons of you know sell your ideas adds. though I would NoT trust them. hey colaredo (closes enuf) is some thing to do with Tesla??? :wiz: HaHa no what is you idea No need to tell me. just wondering i had one for a shirt folder watching my sis fold cloths. well soon enuf i saw the on tv you know (as seen on tv) Man i had it to!!! really! well dot let this one go try the GOV. :)

cowanrg 24th June 2003 06:53 AM

i think my best bet is to just get ahold of a patent attorney and have them research it for me, or give me some info.

thankfully, its a techincal invention, not one any joe can just say "hey, lets make this!" so urgency isnt too key. however, there might already be patents for it, but i bet money if it was out there, it would be something i would know about, because it would be popular.

anyone in here ever go through the process, or currently hold a patent?

bobcat190 24th June 2003 07:48 AM

Ya a lawer would be good. and the little things can still make loads of money! it's not selling 1000 items that cost 10.00$ it's selling a million items that cost 0.5$

The best of luck to you.

phase_accurate 24th June 2003 07:58 AM

Hi cowanrg

There are many sites throughout the world where you can search for patents. One exaple is this one:

http://ch.espacenet.com/espacenet/ch/en/e_net.htm

It is the worldwide search facility of the Swiss federal institute for intellectual property. There is also on American one but I forgot the URL.

There are some points your invention has to fulfil in order to be patentable. The most important one is that it has to be new. If it is already patented, common knowledge or already described in a magazine article, it's novelty is not given anymore. And don't talk to anyone else about it !

Regards

Charles

jan.didden 24th June 2003 08:05 AM

patents
 
Patents are an excellent source for knowledge, and can give you a good view of the "state of the art". A good site (the official one) for the US Patennt and Trademark office is at www.uspto.gov. If you register (free) you can look in all patents, search in various ways and download patents (US$ 3 each).

Jan Didden

cowanrg 24th June 2003 03:19 PM

thanks for the advice everyone!

i have only told my dad about this, and he is very tight lipped of course. im working on it pretty much by myself. unfortunately, its not something you sell millions of, but you may sell 10,000 at $1000 each. its not cheap, but would be in demand for those who could use its application.

ill do some more searching i guess. i already looked on the US patent office site, and its amazing what's actually on there! there are SO many patents there.

i think a lawyer would be my best bet still, becuase this is very complex, and i would need to look at it from every angle to make sure no one stole the idea.

SY 24th June 2003 03:26 PM

As Jan said, www.uspto.gov has great search features, both for issued patents and published applications. You'll need a TIFF plugin to view images. The big disadvantage is that older patents aren't searchable except by number and classification. The Derwent searches are better in that regard but expensive.

Having a lawyer search for you will set you back quite a bit of money. A good compromise is to give the lawyer the searching keywords and ask for the raw search report. Then you can plow through the abstracts, note which patents are potentially relevant, and look them up online or order hard copies.

jan.didden 24th June 2003 03:35 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by cowanrg
i think my best bet is to just get ahold of a patent attorney and have them research it for me, or give me some info.

thankfully, its a techincal invention, not one any joe can just say "hey, lets make this!" so urgency isnt too key. however, there might already be patents for it, but i bet money if it was out there, it would be something i would know about, because it would be popular.

anyone in here ever go through the process, or currently hold a patent?

I went through the process, and I would be very carefull with the patent lawyer. You will have to spoon-feed them everything, because he/she most probably is not intimitely familiar with your invention (if he/she was, they would have patented it themselves). If you are not carefull, you end up doing the legwork, they run an on-line query and you pay horrendous fees.

To be honest, I thought I had a clean-cut case, and they came up with no less than 3 "prior art" patents, one going back to 1953. That guy (a son of Mr Miller, the guy from the Miller cap!) didn't make any fortune on it either.

But, I am now the proud owner of a completely useless patent, because since they changed patent laws in Europe you can get any patent, as long as YOU think it is valid, and as long it is not contested. It hides that nasty stain on the wall...

Jan Didden

phase_accurate 24th June 2003 03:35 PM

Another problem, when searching for patents covering a specific subject, are the sometimes quite weird titles given to the them. So it is sometimes hard to find info on a specific subject.

Regards

Charles


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