The Future of Patent Examination at the USPTO
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is the federal government agency responsible for evaluating and granting patents and trademarks. In 2015, the USPTO employed approximately 8,000 patent examiners who granted nearly 300,000 patents to inventors. As of April 2016, it took roughly 26 months for a patent application to move through the evaluation process, which exceeded the office’s processing goal of 20 months. In August 2016, Andrew Hirshfeld, the commissioner for patents at the USPTO, considered the current state of patent examination and future possibilities. In recent years, a number of new and exciting tools enabled by advances in telework, machine learning, and other approaches had emerged. Hirshfeld hoped to maximize these tools’ utility in order to enhance patent examiners’ work and productivity. Helping examiners become more productive could in turn help the USPTO achieve its joint goals of processing patent applications more quickly and granting better quality patents. But the new tools and organizational changes would bring challenges, too. Any changes would have to be implemented at the grassroots of the USPTO organization, and ongoing pilots would not be successful without the buy-in and cooperation of both individual examiners as well as the union.
- 2017 President and Fellows of Harvard College
Choosing a Book Format
EPUB is the standard publishing format used by many e-book readers including iBooks, Easy Reader, VoiceDream Reader, etc. This is the most popular and widely used format.
DAISY format is used by GoRead, Read2Go and most Kurzweil devices.
Audio (MP3) format is used by audio only devices, such as iPod.
Braille format is used by Braille output devices.
DAISY Audio format works on DAISY compatible players such as Victor Reader Stream.
Accessible Word format can be unzipped and opened in any tool that supports .docx files.