"... the wealth of technological information contained in international patent applications, a prime vector for technology transfer and innovation promotion, will also be searchable in Japanese".This follows recent improvements made to WIPO's Patentscope® online search service which will give access to over 1.4 million Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) applications. This makes Japanese the sixth language in which full-text data search is possible, following English, French, German, Spanish and Russian. Since 16% of PCT applications filed in the past four years are in Japanese, this will make things a good deal easier for searchers -- even though a considerable amount of technological content in Japanese PCT applications is likely be found in other languages at one stage or another. WIPO's press release adds that
Congratulating WIPO, the IPKat welcomes this development and hopes that Japanese will be followed by other major languages in the future. Merpel says, it doesn't really matter what language they're in -- most of us can't understand them anyway!
"The Japanese text data includes descriptions and claims of published PCT international applications filed electronically in Japanese and published on or after July 3rd, 2008. It further includes all the titles and the bulk of abstracts of international applications published since 2004. The Japanese text data will also be available on a weekly basis to all patent offices and companies that have subscribed to the FTP data delivery service.
The Patentscope® search service interface has also been enhanced thanks to fruitful collaboration with Spanish-language patent offices that aim to provide additional patent data in that language. As a consequence the Patentscope® search service interface is now available in English, French and Spanish. Web pages available in Spanish include the search interface, search results and all supporting web pages including on-line help and related pages... "
More on Patentscope here
The PCT here
Another PCT online here