Skip to main content
InnovationQ and the Prior Art Database will be updated on Sunday, October 3, from 11am-1pm ET. You may experience brief service interruptions during that time.
InnovationQ Plus

Two Time-Saving Features for Your Patent Search

By March 5, 2018August 30th, 2021No Comments

When you sit down to begin a new patent search, do you first look at the clock? Do you wonder how much you can possibly accomplish before lunch? Can you find an answer before you need that second cup of coffee?

After you log into InnovationQ Plus®,’s advanced intellectual property analytics tool, you can pump up your search strategy in two easy ways and get the information you need faster. It might sound crazy, but, yes, you can combine your Boolean expertise with natural language queries to form one powerful concept search. And, as you are selecting and inputting search terms, smart stemming automatically truncates root words and identifies newly-evolved compound words. (It does so much of the thinking for you, you might even remember to drink your coffee.)

Combine Boolean and Semantic Search Strategies

Both techniques are important to make sure you are thoroughly searching prior art without missing anything. In InnovationQ Plus, you can use the techniques in tandem, making one super-technique. This increases your efficiency and leads you to art that you might have missed with separate semantic and Boolean searches. With the combined search approach, you can be confident that you are not missing any important prior art and save time and effort in three key areas:

Crafting queries. Crafting a purely syntactical query can be time-consuming. Using the semantic search allows you to easily build a natural language query that describes the concept and rely less on the syntactical build of a Boolean query. To save time, depend less on the syntactical part of your Boolean query and use a fast semantic search to find keywords to feed it.

Performing iterative searches. Patent searching is naturally iterative. Designing and running multiple iterations can take a lot of time. With InnovationQ Plus, you can balance the weight of your semantic query and your Boolean entry as the two work together. You can easily shift the volumes of semantic phrases and Boolean terms and operators, quickly run another search, and see new art reveal itself to you through those iterations. It is an efficient way to quickly move through iterations in a patent search.

Reviewing results. No matter how you get your results, if you are sorting by relevance so that you see the most significant documents first, then you will naturally save time. Rather than scrolling a long list, you can immediately focus on important documents that the combined Boolean and semantic search strategy produced.

Take Advantage of Smart Stemming

Stemming takes a word, breaks it down to its root, and then finds all variations of that word. InnovationQ Plus offers truncation wildcards. This allows you to manually break down a word to its root, add a wildcard (e.g., asterisk or question mark), and then find variations of that word. However, using a truncation wildcard does make it your responsibility to determine the root word and where to apply the wildcard; less than perfect, this path catches noise and misses abnormal variations. For example, if you are searching for prior art related to wearable devices, you would want to include the terms: wears, wear, wearing, and wearable but, a traditional truncation might return words like, “weary”, which is not relevant to your search.

Smart stemming solves this problem. InnovationQ Plus automatically finds all the variations of a word for you. Smart stemming understands the actual word and finds the variations of the root word without the noise, like “weary”. The tool is smart because it uses enhanced stemming algorithms to determine which variations of a word are important. This is a big timesaver because you don’t need to spend time thinking of and expressing every variation of every word and phrase.

Further, smart stemming extends to consider compound and hyphenated words. New terminology (e.g., startup, blockchain) often starts as two words, then morphs into a hyphenated form, and finally evolves into a compound word. Smart stemming captures every variation. To make it simple, capture all variations with smart stemming by using the hyphenated version in the concept query or filters. This saves you from having to take the time to think about all variations, or even if you are correctly spelling the word in the first place.

So, if you want to find relevant, workable results before lunch, then use InnovationQ Plus to combine your Boolean and semantic search strategies and take advantage of smart stemming.