Report:PatBase/Search Syntax/Allowed Operators/Other Operators
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Assignee or Inventor Searching
In addition to the previously mentioned operators, the underscore _ has a special function in PatBase when searching for assignee or inventor names. The underscore will limit the search to only the exact term entered. For example, in an assignee search (pa=):
- Pa= Smith_J would return only “Smith J”
- Pa= Smith J would allow other words to follow the term. This might return “Smith J” or “Smith J Robert”
To search for variations on a name, truncation may be employed along with an underscore. For example:
- Pa= Smith_J* would return “Smith J,” “Smith J Robert” “Smith Jonathan Robert”
- PA= Smith J* would return “Smith J,” “Smith J Robert” “Smith Jonathan Robert,” “J. B. Smith Corporation,” “Smith and Johnson Co,” etc.
To search for exact assignee or inventor names, the pae= (exact assignee) and ine= (exact inventor name) can also be used in the command line interface.
Date Range Searching
Dates must always be entered into PatBase in ISO format, but truncation is not necessary for users who wish to search by year only (YYYY), or year and month only (YYYYMM).
Date ranges can be searched using a colon to separate the start and end dates. According to the manual, "the date range does not have to be evenly weighted on both sides of the colon" (e.g. PD=199004:1991 is acceptable).
In the structured search form, the fields are labeled “from” (meaning start date) and “to” (meaning end date). These fields are supposed to be “equal to” style date operators (>= and <=): they are meant to be inclusive fields, meaning the starting and ending values will appear in the search set.
Searching Numbers in Keyword Terms
The PatBase manual includes a few tips about how to effectively search for terms which contain numbers.
For search terms that include single digit numbers, enclosing the number in double quotes will prevent it from being interpreted by the system as a reference to a previous search string. For example, a search on "alpha 5" will probably be interpreted by the system as (alpha WF1 (terms from query #5 in the search history)). However, entering the string as (alpha "5") will correctly search for the phrase, "alpha 5."
When searching for keywords that contain sub-scripts, such as R3, the query should be written as (keyword [space] "number"). So R3 should be entered as (R "3"). According to a PatBase representative, this type of query may not always highlight, depending on the source of the full text.