Report:PatBase/Viewing Results/Viewing Full Text/Viewing Non-Latin Text Records
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Viewing Non-Latin Text Records
Over 2008-2009, PatBase introduced full text original-language collections for patents published in non-Latin languages, such as Japanese, Chinese, and Korean patent collections, and full text Patent Cooperation Treaty (WO/PCT) records in Russian. As of 2011, PatBase has also added full-text non-Latin coverage in Taiwanese and Thai. During this period, PatBase also added some partial text collections, mostly including titles and abstracts, for seven authorities that publish in non-Latin languages:
- Bulgaria (BG) - Bulgarian
- Eurasian Patent Office (EA) - Russian
- Greece (GR) - Greek
- Morocco (MA) - Arabic
- Turkey (TR) - Turkish
- Patent Cooperation Treaty (WO/PCT) - Russian, Japanese, Chinese (Arabic is also an official language of the PCT, but whether any Arabic text has been loaded into PatBase is unknown)
- Former Serbia and Montenegro (YU) - Serbian
As of November of 2011, non-Latin titles and abstracts for the BG, EA, GR, MA, TR, WO/PCT and YU authorities no longer appeared through searches in the database (as described in the section Full Text Coverage/Non Latin Text). The search results for families composed of only a single publication from one of the previously mentioned patent authorities now only include English-language titles, bibliographic data, and, when available, machine-translated English abstracts. According to a PatBase representative, these non-Latin titles and abstracts are still available in the database but most likely don't appear due to a display problem within the system.
Later searches have revealed some instances of non-Latin text being available for these authorities in larger patent family records. For example, a non-Latin title and abstract is available for EA201100375 A1 of family number 49584002, as illustrated in the screenshot below.
It is possible that the single-publication family records now are composed of English machine-translations in order to make them discoverable in the database, but larger patent family records with many English-language family members will be more likely to include examples of non-Latin text for the individual documents.
There is an option to turn non-Latin full text sections into English machine translations (via the internal Patbase machine translation service or Google) for SOME of these languages. See Machine Translations for Non-Latin Text for an example of the on-demand translation tools in PatBase.
When a non-Latin full text record is present for a patent family, the “Non-Latin Text” option will be present below the document number in the side list of available full-text publications. Selecting this link will display the non-Latin text section directly in the full-text window. The document numbers shown in this menu are hyperlinks. Selecting the individual document number of interest will load the PDF version of the non-Latin text original document into the viewing window (when available).
The next figure displays a Chinese non-Latin text record in the full text viewing window from View mode. As of October 2011, Chinese and Japanese full-text documents utilize a side-by-side view display, with "English - machine translated Full Text for China and Japan" documents situated beside the original non-Latin text. In the figure below, electronic text for the title, abstract, and claims of a Chinese application are displayed beside an English-language machine-translated version of the text. Although Advanced Highlighting has been turned on using Chinese-language keywords, no highlighting appears in the original-language text or the English-language equivalent; this is because the PatBase highlighting features do not work on non-Latin text (as of December 2011). Advanced Highlighting, as well as KWIC, Words to highlight, and Search family highlighting functions, also don't appear to function in the non-Latin text view (neither with Chinese nor English keywords). However, the Control + F function (in this case, performed in Google ) will successfully find a Chinese keyword of interest in the Chinese-language version of the text, but not the English-language equivalent (also demonstrated in the figure below).
The Chinese record in the figure above may be machine-translated into English by either the Patbase internal translation service or using the Google translation drop-down menu to choose from a long list of available end languages (including English). These features are discussed further in Machine Translations for Non-Latin Text, in the next section of this article.
PatBase's ability to display non-Latin text is a great benefit to searchers, especially those who are native speakers of one of these languages. Since this feature was introduced, the translation feature allows translation to English by the PatBase internal translation or through Google translate, which offers a wider range of languages. To improve this feature further, PatBase developers could consider adding a highlighting feature for non-Latin text keywords. In addition, there is a functionality/workflow problem present when viewing translations of non-Latin text: navigating away from the translated text to view another family member will cause the searcher to lose the translation. Fortunately, the option to Google Translate seems to have drastically reduced the time needed to generate a translation, ameliorating this problem. The new side-by-side Chinese/Japanese-English translation view (which by default appears when "non-Latin text" is selected) also helps to solve this issue.