Semantic Annotation for Patents


Technologies for searching text documents by keyword are abundant and familiar. Some even specialise in searching patent documents. But professional patent researchers must look beyond keywords to find and analyse patents based on a sophisticated understanding of the patent’s content and meaning. Technologies to aid such searches with computer processing are at the cutting edge of information retrieval science.

The IRF applies semantic analysis tools especially to overcome the difficulties presented by patent documents. Such difficulties include complex technical language, numeric data, contextual relevance based on structure, and sheer volume. These tools are making it possible to search for patents containing, for instance, specific numeric ranges. Or finding patents related to a concept-such as a commercial over-the-counter drug name-that is not explicit in the patent text. In addition, semantic analysis can be an important input for many processing disciplines, such as machine translation, relevance ranking, and data visualisation.

Project Partners

University of Sheffield, UK
Ontotext Lab Sirma Group Corp, BG