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|DWPI on Delphion is no longer available, as of March 31, 2012. DWPI data is available on the Thomson Innovation platform.|
This section discusses features of the system that are not discussed elsewhere in the article. It also highlighting unusual or unique features of the system.
In Delphion, any patent document with a corresponding Derwent record will be displayed showing the Derwent Title from the integrated (full text) record view. The Derwent title may also be optionally shown for free on the hit list. This free display is a benefit of Delphion’s hosting the Derwent World Patent Index file, and this benefit cannot be found in any comparable subscription search engine. Because Derwent titles present concise summaries of the invention disclosed by the record, displaying these titles for free means that users who wish to scan titles will be able to do so using the value-added data at no additional charge. However, because of Delphion’s display limitations, this can only be done for the first 500 records in a hit list.
The corporate tree feature enhances assignee searching in US, EP and WO databases. By using corporate data from 1790 Analytics, Delphion has included a database of corporate hierarchies into its search form, allowing users to search for company information and discover subsidiary names. This feature allows the user to browse company relationships, and then to select any and all assignee names from the corporate tree feature to query the patent collections. With this feature, users can be more confident that they are searching for the entire IP portfolio represented by IP holdings of each and every branch of a corporate entity.
The corporate tree function can be found next to the assignee search field on the Advanced search form.
Selecting the Corporate Tree link will open a new dialog window. There are two options for the name search: “Original Assignee,” and “Hierarchy.” Original Assignee will display the standardized assignee name assigned to the company by the USPTO, for use with US patents and published applications. Performing a Hierarchy search will display a corporate hierarchy with standard, official names that can be used with confidence in US, EP and PCT assignee searches. Below is an example of a hierarchy search performed on the company name “Sony.”
Delphion is one of the few patent subscription search databases to offer a ranking feature when displaying search results. For further information about this feature, see Weighting and Ranking Features.
Another unique feature offered by Delphion is the clustering feature, which is a keyword analysis feature that groups references together based on shared terms. A graphical representation of the results can then be displayed. For a complete description of the Clustering feature, see Analyzing Results.
Delphion offers a unique graphical application for displaying and analyzing relationships between US citation data. For more information, see Viewing Patent Citations.
Delphion partners with the Yet2.com licensing service. To inquire directly about licensing opportunities after viewing a patent, users can select the Yet2 icon to be directed to more information about licensing the technology.
Non-Patent Literature Search Features
The non-patent literature collections in Delphion cannot be combined with patent search results, saved, analyzed, or even ordered in the same manner that patent references can be manipulated through the system. Therefore, a discussion of their search interfaces will remain separate from the patent search interface functionality discussed earlier in this article.
IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin (TDB)
As discussed in the related data coverage section, the IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin was a journal of defensive publications produced by IBM from 1958-1998. Although it is covered along with other defensive publications in the IP.com database, Delphion hosts its own electronic text versions of the documents, often without including the original images, as IP.com does.
To search the TDB, users must select the “Non-patent Prior Art” link from the left menu that is always present on the search pages. The non-patent interface loads with search forms for both IP.com and the TDB both on the same page. To query the Delphion’s internal TDB files, users must use the simple keyword input field provided.
The system will also allow browsing by volume number of the original journal. This method allows users to choose a particular volume by the month it was first published.
One issue with the TDB collection on Delphion is that the original document images are not available. In the case of some documents which refer to drawings in the specification, this can result in a loss of clarity for the inventive concept. The figure below shows an example of a disclosure without a necessary accompanying figure. By contrast, the defensive publication database IP.com, which also contains the technical disclosure bulletins, does contain the complete image for many of the documents in its collection. The two figures below highlight the difference in a Delphion record (free with Delphion subscription) vs. an IP.com record (separate subscription required).
As discussed in the IP.com data coverage section, IP.com is also a repository of defensive publications, which has coverage encompassing the IBM Technical Disclosure Bulletin, but which also branches out to cover a wide range of defensive publications from many industries.
This collection may be searched through a portal offered by Delphion. To access the collection, as with the TDB, users must first select the “the “Non-patent Prior Art” link from Delphion’s left menu.
As can be seen in the figure above, IP.com’s search interface is much more detailed and flexible than the TDB’s interface (which has only a single keyword search box). The IP.com interface offers retrieval by the following parameters in the drop-down menus:
- -All Sections
- - Document Text
- -“Any Related Persons”
- -Related Patent IDs
- -Related Patent Application IDs
A user may choose up to three of the fields above, and connect them with Boolean operators AND, NOT, or OR. In addition, the search may be limited by any of the following parameters:
- -Publication Date (date range allowed)
- -Publication Country
Finally, IP.com searching may also be performed by the specific IP.com publication ID, if known.
An option on the search interface allows users to choose how many results they would like to view, from 20 to 200. After the search, however, there is a limit on how many records may be viewed from the hit list: only the first hit list page of results (up to 200 documents) may be displayed. Although the hit list page has text saying that only up to 5 records may be displayed, our testers had no trouble reviewing the entire hit list.
In addition to the hit list limitations, when viewing the individual records, there is a display limit of only the first 300 characters from the document. A link at the bottom of the record promises to navigate the user to the full document; however, in order to see the full document text and abstract, users are required to have a separate subscription to IP.com. The figures below contrast Delphion’s IP.com record display with what is available through the IP.com portal with a separate subscription.
IP.com records are ranked according to relevance to the search query when displayed in the Delphion hit list.
Delphion’s datafiles do not actually contain any industry standard content. However, the system does offer a search portal into Thomson’s TechStreet product, a collection of industry specifications and standards compiled from over 350 standards-developing organizations. To view the technology categories and publishers covered by TechStreet, see the TechStreet Industry Standards data coverage section.
Searching TechStreet via Delphion is done by clicking the “Industry Standards” link on the left menu. Searching can be done by inputting a keyword, title, ISBN number, or document ID into the search field.
Because Delphion really just hosts a portal to search the TechStreet website, a similar search could be conducted at TechStreet without requiring a subscription. To view the results of the search, users must purchase the document(s) of interest, and prices may vary.