There was a huge jump in the number of issued U.S. patents in Q2. The USPTO issued 64,037 patents from April through June, 15.4 percent more than in Q1 and 31.7 percent more than the same period in 2009. The number of published applications also increased 9.5 percent, reversing a downward trend first noted in Q4 2009. If this output continues through the rest of the year the USPTO will publish a record-breaking 550,000 documents.
Table 1. Quarterly Patent Counts*
2010 ..... Patents (B) .....PGPubs (A)..... Total (A + B) Q1 ..... 55,488 ..... 77,520 ..... 133,008 Q2 ..... 64,037 ..... 84,919 ..... 143,069
*Based on preliminary weekly data from the USPTO website. Totals may change after the fact due to withdrawn patents and published applications.
I'm the librarian for research services in the Engineering and Science Library at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario. I've been working with patent information since 1991, including seven years at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. I believe that the dissemination of patent information is a public good and should be promoted, especially in the education of science and engineering students.