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MIT, Cisco, Google and USPTO launch Prior Art Archive for better patents

MIT, Cisco, Google and USPTO launch Prior Art Archive for better patents

Google, Cisco, MIT’s Media Lab and the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) jointly launched the Prior Art Archive. The initiative aims to improve patents, says TechCrunch.

“The patent research process should prevent patents from being given to old or obvious technologies,” says MIT. The problem, however, is that patent researchers are often unable to check whether something already exists, because the technologies are often difficult to find. “Unfortunately, technology isn’t easy for a patent researcher to find because it’s old. Especially in the world of computers there is a lot of older art in the form of old manuals, documentation and websites. They haven’t been easy to search to date.”

The Prior Art Archive wants to solve this problem by creating a database with all this information. The initiative uses an archive hosted by MIT. People who want to apply for a patent can easily find examples of earlier art forms and other technical information in it as a reference. In this way, it should be avoided that patents are applied for and distributed for technologies that, for example, have been in existence for 20 years.

Uploading documents

The system allows everyone to upload the technical materials and make them searchable. However, the content must be delivered in digital form via a secure FTP server. Users receive a unique, secure FTP login data. The documents can then be uploaded and are immediately available to the USPTO.

The companies hope that the system will ensure that fewer bad patents are applied for, by giving the researchers from the USPTO the tools they need to find old technology. All documents are also made available to search engines, namely Google Patent and Bing, for easy public access.

This news article was automatically translated from Dutch to give Techzine.eu a head start. All news articles after September 1, 2019 are written in native English and NOT translated. All our background stories are written in native English as well. For more information read our launch article.