The latest improvements to PatentScope include faster query response time, new and enhanced Boolean operators, improved search term highlighting and query tree displays. The operator NEAR can now be used with other Boolean operators and a new operator, BEFORE, can be used to search words in a specific order, e.g. fuel BEFORE cell.
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.