Art of Understanding the Patent for Non-Patentees
Particulars of Patent:
A patent is a complex document made up of several parts, including a specification that describes the invention and how to make and use it. Every granted patent has a following all headings or more than a four (Cover letter is must) in the application.
o Cover sheet - It contains important particulars about the patent like Title of the Invention, Country which is giving patent, Publication No, Publication Date, Inventors Name, Assignee Name, Publication classification and an Abstract with a main drawing. For those unfamiliar with patents, the cover sheet may seem difficult to understand or even incomprehensible. Even for those who have worked with patents, the significance of some of the items on the cover sheet is not always fully understood.
o Drawings - It has drawn by the patent inventor used to explain his/her invention to the reader in the form of pictorial representation.
o Field of the Invention - This topic tells about the very few points of the perfect invention in which is going to be explain further.
o Background of the Invention - It contains the limitations, disadvantages and cross references of related previous inventions and conventional products to the present invention. There is then often a paragraph or two referring to earlier patents or published papers with a brief comment as to why the invention is more effective or cheaper or otherwise better.
o Summary of the Invention - It is the succinct description of the invention. Normally most of the patents have the same description what is in the abstract with addition of some one or two paragraphs.
o Brief Description of the Drawings - It is the simple description of the figures in which figures contains what like that.
o Detailed Description - This is the main body of the patent application. In this part, the field of the invention and summary of the invention is explained in detail using with the reference of figures/drawings and some tables.
o Terminology - Patents use certain words in certain ways, with different meanings. This part illustrates the meaning of those words.
o Claims - It specifies what is protected by that patent application. The claims of a patent come at the end of the document, right after the detailed description of the invention. The claims are set forth as separately numbered paragraphs in a single-sentence format.
The Art of Observing the Patent Information:
The patent is a legal document that provides certain rights to the owner of a patent. It contains information of interest to readers including patentees. For those unfamiliar with patents, this patent document may seem difficult to understand or even incomprehensible. The following are the guidelines may helpful to those non-patentees for observing the main invention and content of the particular patent.
o There are five main important parts, which is very useful for the non-patentees to get to know about patents. They are listed below.
- Summary of the invention
o Title - It gives the good starting about the invention explained in the patent. If the reader is not familiar with patents, but if he is the position to analyze about the particular patent/invention, first he has to read the title and abstract clearly. From the title, he came to know about that patent or invention in which technical area/field. Before start reading we have come to the conclusion about the patent from which area or field. If that field is not related to you means, it is very tough to the reader to understand that invention. For example, if he is engineering professional, but he is supposed to read about pharmacy related invention means it's very hard to understand.
o Abstract - This is the next important part of the patent gives the summary of the patent document with one main diagram. It gives the nice start to the reader if it is really interesting invention. To get the good understanding about the patent, three to four times continues reading and observing of abstract is important.
o Summary of the Invention - This part comes in fourth or fifth in the normal patent document. If the reader is a non-patentee, after finishing abstract reading and understanding, he can go through the summary of the invention. In that he definitely feels the same thing in the abstract told again. That's true, most of the patent writers told the same abstract once again here. But it contains some additional information about the patent very clearly. After reading abstract, it gives the good understanding about the invention to the readers.
o Figures - After getting some idea about the invention, the reader can see figures and diagrams illustrated by the inventor. Now he has the idea about the invention and patent, so he can easily match with the patented idea/invention with the figures specifically flowcharts. If the reader impress with the figures and want to know more about the figures, he can go through the detailed description of the relevant figures. Normally that detailed description explained with reference figures only.
o Claims - The first claim of an issued patent is always numbered "1," with each claim thereafter following in an ascending numerical sequence. Most patents contain about 10-20 claims, although there are some patents with only one claim and others with hundreds of claims. The reader can read if the patent contains minimum number of claims; otherwise it is very difficult to read 100(s) of claims. For a new patent reader, it is very surprise to see the broad claims of the invention. Most of the well-known company patents have very broad claim to protect their ideas/invention. For example automotive industries do the perfect patent claims to protect their ides from their competitors; otherwise their competitors did some slight changes and make a patent for their own. If the reader's motive is to enhance the particular patent, this study of claims is very much necessary or if the reader's motive is to simply understand the particular invention means there is no need to study the claims fully.
Easy Way to Analyze the Patent:
Normally in patent, the writers tried to explain the simple thing in a very broad manner. The normal patent contains minimum of five to eight pages. We can write a real invention of the patent in a single page after observing the content of the patent. Is there any rule the patent application must contain those headings? But there is a common procedure to follow or write the patent application. Because of that, for non-patentees, the patent document is very complex to see and read. So for easy analyzing the patent, the readers can try the following ideas.
o First try to understand the invention using the above listed headings.
o After the patent invention getting into mind, try to write in your own way.
o Try to focus the concentration on that invention.
o If some idea gets into mind for enhancing that invention, try to note down.
o Compare that idea with the patent claims.
o If your idea is protected using claims, try to think the unprotected idea.
o Try to analyze the invention with the disadvantage or limitation point of view.
o Don't spend more time with the cover page and background of the invention.
Patent is one of the legal document explains about the new invention used to protect the inventors idea using various claims. From this article those who are not familiar with patents, they can also easily read, view, observe and analyze the patents successfully.