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A guide to information on patents and trademarks, patent searching, inventor resources and UW intellectual property resources.
Last Updated: Nov 20, 2014 URL: Print Guide

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Definitions & Concepts

What is a Patent?

A patent is a grant of property right by the government to an inventor preventing others from making, using, or selling a new and useful invention for a period of 20 years from application date.


Watch: Science of Innovation: What is Innovation? 

Video prepared by NBC Learn in cooperation with National Science Foundation and the USPTO.


    Key Information

    The most comprehensive source for U.S. patent and trademark information is the website of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office:

    Process for Obtaining a Utility Patent [flowchart]


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