"Nota Bene" means "note this well" or "take particular notice." We at the O'Quinn Law Library will be posting tips on legal research techniques and resources, developments in the world of legal information, happenings at the Law Library, and legal news reports that deserve your particular attention. We look forward to sharing our thoughts and findings and to hearing from you.

N.B: Make a note to visit "Nota Bene" regularly.

-Spencer L. Simons, former Director, O'Quinn Law Library and Associate Professor of Law



Sunday, November 25, 2012

U.S. Patent & Trademark Office Director's Blog

The website of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has gone through quite some changes since David Kappos became its Director in 2009.  One of the changes is the addition of the Director's Forum: David Kappos' Public Blog.  While blog posts have not been added frequently (e.g. four in August, five in September, three in October, and insofar one in November), almost all of them are on meaningful developments and readable even to general public.  For example: on August 2, 2012 the blog introduced the Global Dossier Initiative and the idea was explained in plain English.  On September 14, 2012 there was the announcement on the former Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences becoming the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) two days later.  No doubt that we can find all these changes in the Federal Register, but who would not want to hear the word from the horse's mouth, links included?  Besides opinion posts such as PTAB and Patentability Challenges are must-read and may not be found any place else.

So is there any problem with this blog?  Yes, and it can be a big problem: while the blog started sometime in the Fall of 2009, one can only find posts not older than six months (July 24, 2012 as of today) on the current blog site.  Wouldn't it be wonderful for researchers to be able to find easily the forty-right comments on Mr. Kappos' November 10, 2009 post Putting the USPTO to Work for Independent Inventors three years later?  (How did I get to it?  I was able to access this historical post by clicking the first link provided in the November 1, 2012 post A Day Like Any Other..., then kept clicking the links to the last posts listed beneath the date of each post until there was not more to click.  I may not be that lucky next time.)

November 30, 2012 Update:
Regretably, the next day after I posted the above message Wall Street Journal reported that Mr. Kappos will step down from the position of US PTO Diretcor in January.  Let's hope that the next director will still utilize this blog as a communication tool.

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