Google launches search engine for US patents
Google was live with a service enabling Internet users to search through the more than seven million patents granted in the United States.
The beta, or test, version of Google Patent Search lets people sift through patents granted by the US Patent and Trademark Office as long ago as 1790 by using inventors’ names, filing dates, patent numbers or key words.
Searches return information about the inventor and provide patent details online page-by-page.
“We’ve all heard about the Wright brothers, Thomas Edison, and Alexander Graham Bell — famous inventors whose creative minds changed the course of history,” Google software engineer Doug Banks wrote in a company weblog.
“But there are many more like them and millions of inventions…from useful everyday items such as adhesive tape and contact lenses to, er, things useful in specific situations, like this shark protector suit or this amusement device incorporating simulated cheese and mice.”
Google Patent Search uses much of the same technology that powers the Mountain View, California-based company’s online book search service, so users can scroll pages and zoom in on text and illustrations.
The Search engine is at www.google.com/patents