Concordia University

https://www.concordia.ca/content/concordia/en/library/guides/encs/prior-art-resources.html

Prior Art searching - resources

Patents

How to read a patent (Queen's University):

 
Patent search tools
  • Canadian Patent Database
    Provides access to over 75 years of patent descriptions and images. You can search, retrieve and study over a million patent documents.

  • Esp@ceNet
    Covers United Kingdom, other European countries, European (EP) patents, World International Property Organization (WIPO), worldwide patents and Japanese patents from 1836 to the present. 

  • United States Patent and Trademark Office
    Provides full-text of U.S. patents from 1976 onwards. For older patents (1790-1975), the scanned image is available.
  • PATENTSCOPE
    The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO)'s international patent search tool. Use this database to access full text with options to search by keyword, classification, applicants, and other criteria. Mutlilingual support is available.
  • Google Patent Search
    Covers the entire collection of granted patents and published patent applications from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the European Patent Office (EPO), and the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). US patent documents date back to 1790, EPO and WIPO to 1978.

How to search for patents by keyword in Google Patents


Patent classification searching

 

See also: 


Journal articles

How to search for articles

Google Scholar:

Engineering / Computer Science Databases:

  • Compendex / Inspec
    Compendex, with references to more than 5,000 engineering journals and conferences, is the definitive source for all types engineering information going back to 1884. INSPEC goes back to 1896 and covers physics, electrical engineering, electronics and computing, as well as manufacturing, production and mechanical engineering. 
  • IEEE Xplore
    Full-text of articles published in the journals, transactions, and conference proceedings of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) and of the British-based Institution of Electrical Engineers (IEE) from 1988 onwards. Current IEEE standards are also available. Covers circuits, communication systems, computer engineering, information theory, robotics, power engineering, signal processing, telecommunications, and more. 
  • ACM digital library
    Abstracts and full-text of articles published in the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) journals, magazines, conference proceedings and newsletters, covering computer science, information technology, software engineering, networking, wireless communications, and other computing-related subjects

  • More Engineering and Computer Science Databases

General or Business Databases:

  • Academic Search Complete
    Multi-disciplinary database covering every field, from business to engineering, to social sciences.
  • Business Source Complete
    Include articles from magazines, newspapers, journals and trade publications which will provide, for example, real world applications of technology and new materials, descriptions of current and past engineering projects.
  • ProQuest Business Databases
    Include articles from magazines, newspapers, journals and trade publications which will provide, for example, real world applications of technology and new materials, descriptions of current and past engineering projects.

  • More Business databases
 
 

Newspapers, magazines & trade journals

How to search for articles

 

Google News:

  • Google News
    Provides up-to-date news coverage, aggregated from sources all over the world.

Newspaper & magazine articles

  • Canadian Newsstand Major Dailies 
    Fulltext to Canadian daily newspapers.
  • CBCA Complete 
    Includes hundreds of Canadian newspapers, magazines, and journals, many with fulltext, including trade journals, and professional publications in all subject areas from 1982 onward. 
  • CPI.Q (Canadian Periodical Index) 
    Covers all subject areas with an emphasis on Canadian and international issues. It provides citations to more than 400 English and French language journals and magazines, including approximately 30 American titles and approximately 80 business periodicals, some in full text. It also provides full text of selected Globe & Mail articles. 
  • Eureka.cc
    Provides full text access to English and French language Canadian newspapers, magazines, newswires, blogs and broadcast transcripts. Exceptional for access to regional and local Canadian news sources. Also provides access to international and U.S. newspapers and news media. 

Trade journal articles:

  • ProQuest Business Databases
    Include articles from trade publications, including Canadian sources, which will provide, for example, real world applications of technology and new materials, descriptions of current and past engineering projects (useful if looking for case studies). Search results can be limited to SOURCE TYPE - TRADE JOURNALS.
  • Business Source Complete
    Includes articles from trade publications which will provide, for example, real world applications of technology and new materials, descriptions of current and past engineering projects (useful if looking for case studies). Search results can be limited to SOURCE TYPES - TRADE PUBLICATIONS.
 

Books & theses

Books:

  • CLUES: Concordia Libraries' catalogue
  • WorldCat: worldwide catalogue of over 10,000 institutions
  • Google Books: full text search of books scanned from dozens of universities in the US and Europe. Full text not available, but some books do provide extensive previews
Theses:

 


White papers & non-technical disclosures

White papers tend to be written by businesses to describe technical benefits of a product, to recommend solutions to a problem, or to provide tips on a certain issue. Here are some sources:

Technical disclosures are intentional publications of invention ideas to create prior art and prevent competitors from patenting the invention. Here are some sources:

 

 

 

Technical reports

Governments often conduct or pay industries for research and development and the results of this research are often published in technical reports. These reports often cover the areas of defense, space, environment, medicine and energy. 

US Government:

Computer science:

 

Product literature

Product literature includes product, company, vendor, or manufacturer catalogues, product selectors, buyers guides, advertisements, etc. They will help you to locate products that already exist. They can also provide specifications, photographs, drawings, application notes, data books (for computers and integrated circuit devices), etc.

  • General:
    • AZoM: lists suppliers, articles, equipment, etc. based on application.
    • Canadian Company Capabilities: an Industry Canada database of Canadian companies
    • Fraser's Canadian trade directory: Directory of Industrial Suppliers and Manufacturers.
    • Global Sources: components made in and shipped from China.
    • ICRIQ.com: Provides access to an up-to-date database of Québec manufacturers and suppliers. There are no catalogues on the site, but it will link to a company’s catalogue if available.
    • IHS Global Specs: This website is updated daily. Registration is required, but it is free.
    • Thomas Register: for finding suppliers of products and services in North America.

  • Electrical/Software:
    • Adafruit: tools, equipment and electronics personally selected by an MIT engineer.
    • All Electronics: electronic and electro-mechanical parts and supplies.
    • Electronic Engineer's Master Catalogue product catalogue for electrical engineers.
    • Maker Shed: Books, kits, robots, microcontrollers, science sets, electronics, tools and supplies, curated by the people at Make.
    • Sparkfun: Catalog with over 3,500 components and widgets.

  • Mechanical:
    • McMaster-Carr a searchable listing of over half a million products.
 

Software & apps

Open Source code

Find source code for software or apps in open source software web hosting facilities:

 

Software patents

Software-based inventions are classified in the United States Patent Classification system under the following classes:

For inventions comprised of both hardware & software, patents are generally classified under these classes:
 

Patent Commons:

Some companies have made some patents available to the open source community under promises that "they will not, under certain terms and conditions, assert patent rights against third parties who are engaging in activities that might otherwise give rise to a claim of patent infringement." Search for these patents at the LinuxFoundation website


Other sources

Blogs:

Search for posts across several blogging sites:

 

Crowdfunding:

Invention crowdfunding sites can be great places to look for ideas:

 

Forums:

 

General search (other than Google):

  • DuckDuckGo: for thos concerned with privacy
  • Dogpile: searches top 3 search engines at once
 

Images:

 

Presentations:

 

Social networking sites:

  • Who's Talkin: searches across multiple social network sites
 

Videos (other than YouTube):

 
 

Back to top

© Concordia University