Annual Technical Report 2005 on Patent Information Activities submitted by EAPO (SCIT/ATR/PI/2005/EA)
Where URLs are requested below, it is preferred that either URLs which are likely to remain stable over time (three years or more) are provided, or home (main) page URLs are provided with a short explanation of how to access the corresponding information.
The term "patent" covers utility models and Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPCs). Offices which issue design patents should report their design patent information activities in their Annual Technical Reports on Industrial Design Information Activities.
I. Evolution of patent activities
Positive dynamics of filing Eurasian applications was preserved in 2005, which points to the growing attractiveness and efficiency of the Eurasian patent procedure for its users.
1940 Eurasian applications were filed in 2005, by 19% more than in 2004. The Eurasian Office received 11517 Eurasian applications since the foundation of the Eura-sian Patent Organization by 2005.
International applications made the main bulk of Eurasian applications in 2005 – 1501 applications or 78 % of the total number filed in that year. As compared to 2004 the number of international applications filed through the Eurasian regional level increased by 13,6%. Total of 9566 Eurasian applications were filed according to the PCT procedure for 10 years, which makes 83 % of the total number of applications filed during that pe-riod.
1090 applications or 9,5% of the total number of Eurasian applications were filed directly through the Eurasian Office from 1996 to 2005. 275 applications were filed ac-cording to this procedure in 2005, which is by 84,6% more than in 2004. The share of these applications made 14 % of the total number of Eurasian applications filed in 2005.
The number of Eurasian applications filed through national patent offices of the Contracting States increased by 2,5% as compared to 2004. 164 of such applications were filed in 2005, which made 8% of the total number of Eurasian applications, filed that year.
From 1996 to 2005 the Register of Eurasian patents comprised 6850 Eurasian pat-ents, including 1277 in 2005. The number of registered patents, as compared to 2004 in-creased by 16,51%.
During the same period 6519 Eurasian patents were granted, including 1201 patents in 2005.
II. Matters concerning the generation, reproduction, distribution and use of primary and secondary sources of patent information
EAPO issues its official publications using own publishing facilities for all prepress processes. The unified publication technology involves scanning, optical character recognition, editing, proofreading and blueprint make-up. All data used for publications (including bibliographic data in Russian and English, pages in facsimile mode, full-text descriptions, first pages, blueprints etc.) is stored in one database (IPDL HIVE system, developed on outsourcing basis for EAPO). Information is extracted from the database by client software in necessary formats. The client software also provides broad automation of everyday operations at every workplace of the publication department. About 14500 Eurasian documents were stored in IPDL HIVE system's database at the end of 2005.
Printing of EAPO publications is performed by other companies on contractual basis.
All mentioned information is published in Russian, with the exception of Eurasian Patent Specifications CD-ROM that contains reference bibliographic data and claims in English as well, and Annual Report with text both in English and Russian.
Annual Report contains most complete information on the activities of the Organiza-tion and the Office in past year and can serve as additional source of information to this Annual Technical Report.
Furthermore, EAPO issued several non-periodical publications regarding activities of the Organization and Eurasian patent legislation.
Announcements of the Office of legal and norm-setting kind are published in Bulletin "Inventions"; more general announcements can be also found at Web-site of EAPO at www.eapo.org. The number of sections with notices and announcements in the Bulletin was extended in 2005.
Procedural letters to applicants are formed automatically in Common Software and sent mostly on paper by mail. EAPO uses Microsoft Word for text processing of most of the office documents.
III. Matters concerning abstracting, classifying, reclassifying and indexing of technical information contained in patent documents
Eurasian patent applications are filed at the EAPO in Russian only. When patent ap-plication is filed, an applicant or a representative provides abstract in required format in accordance with filing procedure. This abstract is published with bibliographic data of the application in the Bulletin, at first pages of application and corresponding patent and on
CD-ROM "Descriptions of inventions in Eurasian applications". Abstracts are published in Russian only; claims are translated into English as well for purposes of further elec-tronic publication.
Bibliographic data for applications and patents and full texts of patents are stored in database storage of IPDL HIVE system. All documents are automatically indexed on up-load to the database. IPDL HIVE system also allows extracting data in required format for further loading to other external search systems. For example, this extracted data is used in EAPO owned EAPATIS (See Chapter IV and V of this Report) and in Esp@cenet.
IV. Search file establishment and upkeep
Information from disks is used in forming the Eurasian Office patent information depository, represented by the totality of local search reference-bibliographic DB, DB with complete specifications of patent documents, DB of non-patent documentation. Local DB keep complete retrospective patent documentation of WIPO, EPO, Eurasian Office, the USA, the Russian Federation and the USSR, Germany from 1991; Great Britain from 1979, France from 1978, Japan from 1976 and from other countries. Local data-bases of national patent documentation were formed since 2003. At present, the patent information depository stores 36 local databases, regularly receiving new databases. More than 25 million patent documents were loaded into local databases for 6 years (since 1999) of existence of the patent information depository.
In 2005 the work on building up the united Eurasian patent-information space con-tinued by creating, uploading and arranging databases with retrospective and current na-tional patent documentation of the CIS countries, including the EAPO Contracting States, their integration with other DB, and granting an unified access to them. The retrospective patent documentation was granted in 2005 by national patent offices of the Kyrgyz Re-public (for 2003-2004), the Republic of Tajikistan (since 1995) and Turkmenistan (1994 - 2003 ).
National patent offices continued to submit current patent information, and its uploading into databases. Local DB of retrospective patent documentation of Russia and the USSR (since 1924 ), and the Republic of Tajikistan were put into operation, and the Re-public of Kazakhstan elaborated instruments of meta-search in the internet DB. Support was provided for the national patent documentation DB of the Republic of Armenia.
V. Activities in the field of computerized and other mechanized search systems
Maintenance and development of the regional Eurasian patent-information system (EAPATIS). The EAPATIS is the first regional patent-information system in the post-Soviet space, which represents the world, regional and national patent-information re-sources. Its elaboration began in the Eurasian Office in 1998. In 2000 the Eurasian Office introduced a local version of the system into commercial operation. In 2003 an access to the system was granted to national patent offices of the EAPO Contracting States via the internet, and since 2005 to patent offices of the Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Georgia. Eura-sian patent attorneys received access to the system since May 2005, and the third parties - since October 2005 from the EAPO web site.
Commercial operation of the EAPATIS in the Eurasian region began virtually from 2004. Examiners and specialists of national patent offices received a full-scale access to a huge volume of patent documents. The introduction of the EAPATIS in the Eurasian region permitted to reduce the acuteness of the problem of information provi-sion of examination in patent offices of sovereign countries.
The EAPATIS realizes the principle of a “single window” when a user enjoys the opportunity of simultaneous access and search both in local and external DB, without knowing search interfaces of the latter. The system has a “user-friendly” interface due to the developed control system of enquiries, prompts, the availability of detailed regulations and methodological materials.
In 2005 the EAPATIS received more than 380000 search enquiries from the Eura-sian Office examiners and national patent offices, and more than 90000 documents were reviewed. As compared to 2004 (onset of commercial operation of the system in the internet), 2005 demonstrated more than a threefold increase in the number of users’ enquiries. More than a thousand examiners of national patent offices, including patent offices of the Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Georgia were connected to the system. The biggest number of enquiries was received from patent offices of Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, the Ukraine and Uzbekistan.
A further development of the EAPATIS is related to an increase in the number of persons with an access to information resources of the system.
IPDL HIVE system. The system supports publication process and own patent fund processing in EAPO. It offers reliable storage of all materials used for publication, auto-mation of the most of publication tasks, structured access to the stored patent information via client software or Web interface, multiplex search in bibliographic data and full texts considering languages morphology (Russian and English) and provides statistics on documents stored and on publication process.
Equipment and software used: Intel-based server CPU 2xXeon 3200MHz, RAM 4 GB; Windown 2000 Server (Russian version), IBM DB2, IBM WebSphere Portal, IBM Content Manager.
EAPO examiners are using test access to EPOQUE-BNS search and retrieval system via Patnet provided by the European Patent Office.
EAPO employees widely use Internet resources at their desktops for carrying out searches in databases supported by other patent offices (WIPO, European Patent Office, Canada, Australia, Japan, United States of America and others).
All described services are accessed via local area network (Ethernet 10/100/1000 Mbps, 102 PCs, 53 personal/network printers). Internet connection: 1024 kbps fibre-optic line.
Administrative information system. Basic attention in 2005 was paid to the creation of conditions for introducing EPTOS development projects (electronic files, electronic payments, CS-soprano, electronic filing, etc.), or a similar EPTOS system; web portal; the electronic record keeping system; electronic exchange with WIPO; integration of accounting software with the record keeping system; development of it, permitting to simplify the work with applicants, patent attorneys and inventors. Taking into consideration time constrains of submitting the Eurasian Office back files of reclassified documents to the EPO, and the pendency of the Eurasian Office involvement in the CS SOPRANO project, a decision was taken to begin, on its own, the development of software-engineering instruments, supporting at the minimum, the creation and submission of the Eurasian Office back files of reclassified documents to the EPO, and at the maximum, full support of the IPC reformed symbols, including their transmission by standard 6.
Two methods of realizing this software complex were used – within the CS and/or as a separate software instrument; on December 1, 2005 they were put into operation in the Eurasian Office. Support modules of IPC 2006 in the AIS CS have been elaborated. The software, prepared in the Eurasian Office in conformity with the IPC Reform, was integrated with the upgraded AIS CS versions.
The composition of information in publication modules was determined, and amend-ments and supplements were made under the IPC Reform. Formats have been worked out for introducing IPC-2006 symbols into the Eurasian Office publications, supported by the Procedure Automation Department. The composition of information was determined, and amendments and supplements were made in compliance with the IPC Reform. The up-grading of software modules began for the uploading of information in the internet. Stan-dard 6 was introduced jointly with information departments of the Eurasian Office for an exchange of patent information (support of IPC-2006 symbols), and the mechanism of receipt and uploading of MCD information in the AIS CS was worked through. It began an electronic exchange of patent information with the WIPO International Bureau under the impact and PCT-EDI projects.
The completeness of submitting the Eurasian Office patent information to MCD was studied in detail. The Eurasian Office attended the EPO activities, dedicated to the development of the IPC Reform, introduction into the Eurasian Office of the SOPRANO pro-ject, as part and parcel of the EPTOS project; and participated in working through the technical issues of information exchange with MCD. The Eurasian Office studied in depth migration of databases from the CS information medium to the EPTOS-SOPRANO, and also reclassification of IPC symbols in future AMCEPTOS-SOPRANO versions jointly with Jouve company. It also participated in Jouve actions, dedicated to the development of the IPC Reform.
VI. Administration of the industrial property office library and services available to the public (relating to facilities, e.g., for lodging applications, for assisting clients on searching procedures, for obtaining official publications and registry extracts)
The Eurasian Office patent information collection is represented by a collection of patent documentation from international, regional, and leading national patent offices, as well as by non-patent documentation on CD/DVD disks, and by a patent information depository, which holds local databases (DB) with patent and non-patent information, formed as a result of processing information on disks.
In 2005 the collection increased by 750 CD/DVD disks of the current series. The Office continues to receive disks from WIPO, EPO, the USA, Austria, Germany, Great Britain and other countries, disks of the BENELUX and PRECES series. The Russian language CD/DVD collection was replenished with the CISPATENT series disks, containing unified patent documentation of the CIS countries, disks with patent documenta-tion of the Russian Federation (applications and patents), disks with Eurasian applications and patents, and also disks with backlogs and current documentation of national patent offices of the EAPO Contracting States. By the end of 2005 the Eurasian Office collection had more than 10,5 thousand CD/DVD disks. Day-to-day work continued on acquisition, accounting, ordering and cataloging of the collection, recovery of missing and foul disks.
The search and selection of cited patent and non-patent documentation, included into the international search reports on Eurasian applications continued in 2005. The search was conducted on 959 applications with 3473 reference documents including 2849 cited patent and 624 cited non-patent documents. 3344 cited documents were found and transmitted to examiners in an electronic format, 2848 of them were cited patent documents, and 496 – cited non-patent documents. More than 90% of patent documents at that were found in the Eurasian Office patent-information depository, and downloaded from local EAPATIS DB. The provision of examiners with cited documents was 96,3 %, which was by 2,5% more than in 2004. The search for non-patent documentation was carried out in the internet digital libraries, and on the sites of the leading world publish-ers, as well as in Moscow libraries.
The Eurasian Office uses information technology and procedures of providing ex-aminers with cited patent and non-patent documentation since 2002. Their use permitted to substantially reduce search time, and concession of cited documentation. The search and selection of cited documentation on 2775 Eurasian applications were made in 4 years. During these years examiners were provided with cited documentation by 93,7 % on the average.
In 2005 the Eurasian Office examiners conducted more than 50,000 patent searches, which is twice as many as in 2004.
In 2005 an experiment on search was conducted in the Russian language collec-tion of the patent-information depository by examiners of the Department of physics and electrical engineering, Department of mechanics, and by employees of Dataware depart-ment. The search and analysis of the results methodology was developed for the experiment. The subject of the search was the relevant information sources used in assessing the patentability of Eurasian applications for inventions selected for the experiment.
The experiment demonstrated that the EAPATIS system allowed a full-scale search in the Russian language Eurasian Office electronic collection on Eurasian applica-tions under the competence of the Departments of physics, electrical engineering and mechanics. In the future it is planned to experiment on inventions in chemistry and medi-cine.
Paid patent-information services on the basis of EAPATIS were provided since November 2005. Users shall also pay for an access to local and external DB, connected to the system. They are given an opportunity for all types of searches in local DB and meta-search in external DB, of obtaining search results in the form of an abstract-bibliographic specification of the documents and texts, complete specifications of Eurasian patents, and published Eurasian applications, etc.
VII. Matters concerning mutual exchange of patent documentation and information
In 2005 the Eurasian Office exchanged patent documentation with three international organizations (WIPO, EPO, ARIPO) and 46 national patent offices. Documents were sent to Azerbaijan, Australia, Austria, Armenia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Great Britain, Hungary, Vietnam, KPDR, South Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Slovenia, the USA, Tajikistan, Thailand, Turkmenistan, Turkey, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Finland, France, Croatia, Czechia, Switzerland, Estonia, Yugoslavia and Japan.
The following official Eurasian Office publications were circulated: the Bulletin; CD-ROM with specifications of inventions to Eurasian patents and applications; CD-ROM with legislative, normative-methodological and reference documentation of the Eurasian Office; CDROM “Eurasian applications and patents. Summary index”; Annual index and Annual report. In exchange the Eurasian Office received CD-ROM, DVD with patent documentation of international organizations and “countries of the PCT minimum documentation”, Annual Reports and specialized publications.
VIII. Other relevant matters concerning education and training in, and promotion of, the use of patent information, including technical assistance to developing countries
The Seventeenth (Twelfth regular) meeting of the EAPO Administrative Council and the Tenth meeting of the Budget Working group were held in 2005, the Tenth Anniversary of the EAPO. The meeting of the Permanent Working group on information technologies did not take place in 2005 – all the items of its competence were discussed within the framework of interaction between the Eurasian and national patent offices.
During the last years practically all needy patent offices of the EAPO Contracting States, with a direct EAPO financial support, received modern computer equipment, and were connected to the dedicated internet channels; web–sites of these offices were opened in the Eurasian web portal. An access was provided to the systems of the Eurasian patent documentation.
The Eurasian Office provides substantial support to these offices not only in strengthening their engineering basis and in updating information dataware, but also in professional development.
Starting from 2001 the Eurasian Office provides distant advanced training for specialists from national patents offices at the Russian institute of intellectual property on the subject of “intellectual property”. Total of 17 specialists received professional training financed by the Eurasian Patent Organization.
Close attention is paid to the organization of training at the Eurasian Office of specialists from national patent offices of the EAPC Contracting States. An individual approach is applied to a trainee, based on the Eurasian Office training schedule, which accounts for his /her interests.
The Eurasian Office on the base of the Training course of the EPO set up its own training course on the examination of Eurasian applications to train examiners. Training sessions on using the Eurasian patent information system (EAPATIS) are regularly held for examiners.
In 2005 the Eurasian Office signed the “Agreement on the use of the EAPATIS” with the national patent office of the republic of Uzbekistan. A draft of a similar agree-ment was prepared with the patent office of the Ukraine.
In 2005 the Protocol on technical assistance to the “Agreement between the Eura-sian Patent Office and the Russian agency of patents and trademarks on cooperation in the legal protection of inventions” was signed. The Protocol provides for technical cooperation between the offices in publishing official publications, development of patent-information space on the basis of the EAPATIS, IPC Reform, the use of up-to-date standards for procession, deposition and circulation of patent information, electronic filing, and upgrading of record keeping.
IX. Other relevant matters
|1.||Classification is allotting one or more classification symbols (e.g., IPC symbols) to a patent application, either before or during search and examination, which symbols are then published with the patent application.|
|2.||Preclassification is allotting an initial broad classification symbol (e.g., IPC class or subclass, or administrative unit) to a patent application, using human or automated means for internal administrative purposes (e.g., routing an application to the appropriate examiner). Usually preclassification is applied by the administration of an office.|
|3.||Reclassification is the reconsideration and usually the replacement of one or more previously allotted classification symbols to a patent document, following a revision and the entry into force of a new version of the Classification system (e.g., the IPC). The new symbols are available on patent databases.|