Archive for the ‘Google’ Category

Google Patents Now Redirects to the Main Google Home Page   Leave a comment

Some of you may have noticed that if you try to go to the Google Patents homepage, you are now automatically redirected to the main  Google Home Page.  In fact, without much warning, Google decided to integrate Google Patents with its main Google search engine.

Google calls it part of its “Spring Cleaning in Sping” in its official blog.   Here is what they say about Google Patents:

  • We’re redirecting the old Patent Search homepage to to make sure everyone is getting the best possible experience for their patent searches. Over the past few months, we’ve been making updates and improvements to the Patent Search functionality on—not only are you able to search the same set of U.S. patents with the same advanced search options, the new experience loads twice as fast as the old Patent Search homepage, contributes to a unified search experience across Google, and sports Google Doodles as well. The team looks forward to including patents from other countries soon, and will be rolling out additional features to Patent Search on in the future.

This is part of an initiative by CEO Larry Page to streamline the services offered by Google.  Some of the other services that have also been shut down are Google Flu Vaccine Finder, Google Related, Google Sync for Blackberry, Google Talk’s mobile web app and One Pass.  For a complete list of services that have been affected, read here.

The good news is that Google Patents is not gone altogether, and the Advanced Search Page is still active, as Google explained in their blog, cited above.  It is also encouraging that Google plans to add additional features, such as the addition of patents from other countries.  In a previous blog post, I reported that Google is now archiving US patent file histories from public PAIR.  Hopefully, Google will continue to expand its patent-related services.  Keep checking back for updates!

Posted May 6, 2012 by deboraplehn in Google

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Google’s Page Rank Algorithms Help Scientists Study Hydrogen Bonding   Leave a comment

As reported by Thomas Claburn of Information Week, Aurora Clark from Washington State University, together with collaborators Mooney and Corrales  from the University of Arizona, recently published a research article in the Journal of Computational Chemistry describing how they used Google’s Page Rank algorithms to study hydrogen bonding.  Page Rank is a link analysis algorithm, developed by Larry Page, which has been patented and is assigned to Stanford University.  Google has an exclusive license.  You can read the patent here.  Page Rank allows Google to assign a degree of “importance” or “relevance” to a web page by determining how many other web pages link to it.  The theory is that if many other web pages link to a given page, that page must be very important or relevant.  Professor Clark discovered that this same process of measuring and ranking connectivity between web pages could be applied to molecules.  For example, water molecules are constantly forming and reforming hydrogen bonds, which in this instance are bonds that form between hydrogen atoms of one water molecule and oxygen atoms of another water molecule.

Professor Clark makes available to other researchers the scripts that she employed in her research, called moleculaR-networks.  She used moleculaR-networks to study the effects of a solute on the network of hydrogen bonds in water.  A solute is a substance which dissolves in a solvent (here, water) to form a solution.  MoleculaR-networks allowed Professor Clark and her team to study the organization of water around the solute, so that the dynamics of solvent shells could be monitored.

Professor Clark explains her research in this video:

I love stories like this that show cross-talk or linkage (!) between different scientific fields, such as computer science and biology or chemistry.  It will be interesting to see what other applications will come of algorithms such as Page Rank in molecular design and modeling.  Who knows what other algorithms may one day find new and unexpected applications.  Will companies such as Facebook or Google branch out into other scientific endeavours?  Will they start patenting new processes which have applications in other scientific disciplines? Only time will tell.

Posted February 19, 2012 by deboraplehn in Google

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Public PAIR patent file histories now available on Google   4 comments

The patent file histories of roughly a million and a half patent applications are now available through Google.  Google is crawling file histories from Public PAIR on the USPTO website.

Google repackages the documents as zip files.  Google has provided detailed information about the format.

For instructions on how to retrieve file histories from Google Click Here.

This new service indicates that Google is investing more resources into its Patent search franchise, spearheaded by Google Patents.  Google may be positioning itself to be a real competitor to other services that currently provide patent file histories.  The real advantage of Google is, of course, that it provides the service for free.  It remains to be seen if Google will continue expanding the type of services it provides, perhaps beginning to offer free patent monitoring services, such as “Google Patent Alerts.”

Posted February 3, 2012 by deboraplehn in Google

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