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  • Patent/prior art searches are an essential step in the process of establishing the novelty of a product or solution.

  • Increasing the comprehensiveness of a prior art search enhances the likelihood of success for a new patent because the inventor becomes more aware of the state of the field, can create and perceive distinctions between their invention and existing inventions, and is able to preempt sources of conflict with prior patent literature.

  • Publicly available resources are the best place to start a prior art search.

  • Follow this mantra—brainstorm, search, retrieve and expand!

  • Documentation of all search results is a necessity and may prove essential in later discussions with a patent professional or when filling patent paperwork to demonstrate that a reasonably extensive search was performed.

  • Resources from the university can offer counsel. There are almost always people who are trained to be experts in prior art searches and will be more than willing to help out.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.