June 2nd, 2010 | Published in Google Public Policy
When we launched Google Patent Search in 2006, we wanted to make it easier for people to understand the world of inventions, whether they were browsing for curious patents or researching serious engineering. Recently, we’ve also worked on a number of public data search features, as well as experimental features like the Public Data Explorer.
There are many places to search for individual patents -- the US Patent and Trademark Office and Google Patent Search are two examples. But sometimes that’s not enough. If you’re trying to identify trends in innovation over time or analyze all the patents relevant to your invention, it helps to have all the patent data on hand. For example, the non-profit Cambia’s PatentLens creates topical analyses of patent information, and they can only do this with a comprehensive data set. Others have experimented with a variety of online mashups of the data, such as an interactive map showing the most innovative states.
The trouble is, that’s a lot of information -- terabytes of it -- and in the past the only way to deliver that information was on DVDs and other physical media. The USPTO will ship them to you, and over the last decade Cambia alone has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on this data. But with high-bandwidth connections on the rise, both the USPTO and Google think it’s time to help people download the bulk data directly.
That’s why we’re proud to announce that the USPTO and Google are making this data available for free at http://www.google.com/googlebooks/uspto.html. This includes all granted patents and trademarks, and published applications -- with both full text and images. And in the future we will be making more data available including file histories and related data.
We look forward to continuing to work with the USPTO and other public organizations to expand access to public data. You can read the official press release from the USPTO here.