Patent workflow and technology

By: Paul Kidd

The machines are taking over

Are you ready for R2D2 and C3PO to take over? No, Yes, Maybe or Does not compute?

Ready or not, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence (AI) are steadily taking over every aspect of routine life including automation in the field of IP. In all aspects of life, the AI revolution is here to help us, even though the solution is removing the human broker from the workflow.

Over the last 20 years, Machine Learning and AI have helped to change and shape the IP patent information industry. OCR (Electronic Optical Character Recognition), Machine Translations and Semantic Search are three areas where technology has already helped.

The current status

OCR processing of patent PDFs and printed patent documents has been with us for a few decades and is a mainstream technology.

>> Machine Learning – Mature Technology

>> Benefits – Accuracy and Speed

Machine Assisted Translations are again a mainstream technology making global patent documents available in your choice of language format including on-the fly translations.

>> Machine Learning – Mature Technology

>> Benefits – Accuracy and Speed

OCR and Machine Assisted translations are standard background technologies. Deployment of these technologies was important due to the increasing volumes of global patents ensuring quicker access to the latest publications for patent professionals and organizations.

Semantic Search and the application of this technology for IP opened up patent searching to non-patent professionals. Semantic Search has made it possible to search patent data effectively without having to think for many hours how to formulate a Boolean search query or what the IPC or CPC code is for a washing machine.

>> Machine Learning – Maturing Technology for patent searching

>> Benefits – Precision (Accuracy), Relevancy and Speed

Semantic Search for patent searching is a developing technology. It will continue to improve and, just like the giant on-line search engines, the algorithms will “learn” with human feedback to improve the patent search results for users.

The focus now for both patent offices and organizations is managing the huge volumes of information with an increasing focus on technology and data scientists to help manage IP workflows.

How patent offices are evolving

Major patent offices are implementing technology including machine learning and AI as the future for their patent, trademark and design application workflow solutions. The Japan Patent Office have announced publicly that it is investing in the use of artificial intelligence technology to automate processes such as screening patent, trademark and design applications.