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Making the Case for Patent Searchers?

:: Howard S Homan, PhD, Information Research & Analysis Section, ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company, has written a timely and informative article about why good technical searching takes time, and costs money. Most of his work involves patent infringment searching in the petroleum products realm. The article appears in Searcher, v12 n3, March 2004.

    "If you, at the request of a client, glean and filter information from a variety of sources, you are called a searcher. If you search in science and engineering, you are called a technical searcher. This article describes the work of technical searchers. It evolved during my attempts to explain my new job to former colleagues, now clients, during my apprenticeship in technical searching. Most of my current job involves patent infringement searching in the area of petroleum products. For clients, this article explains why searching seems to take so long and cost so much. (The short answer is that searchers haven't been replaced by software, yet. For the long answer, keep reading.) Hopefully, this article will enable clients to make good use of their searchers and help fellow searchers describe their unique profession."

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