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Survey on the Implementation and Promotion of WIPO Standard ST.22

Response submitted by Austria in 2011

The present questionnaire addresses issues concerning WIPO Standard ST.22 (Recommendation for the authoring of patent applications for the purpose of facilitating optical character recognition (OCR)) and patent applications submitted on paper or submitted electronically (e-filed) but having the text body of the application submitted in image form (e.g., PDF or TIFF images).  Even if your Office does not perform OCR on its documents, please respond to the questions which are applicable.

A revised version of WIPO Standard ST.22 was adopted by the Standards and Documentation Working Group (SDWG) on November 21, 2008.  It is available at: http://www.wipo.int/standards/en/pdf/03-22-01.pdf

The results of the survey will be presented for consideration by the Committee on WIPO Standards (CWS).

Please take note that some questions might not be displayed depending on the response(s) to preceding question(s). This could cause gaps in numbering of displayed questions and sections.

Section 1: Patent filing in your Office

1. Does your Office accept patent applications submitted on paper or submitted electronically but having the text body of the application submitted in image form (e.g., PDF or TIFF images)?

Yes

2. If applicable, please indicate the percentage, with respect to the total number of applications received by your Office, and the year of reference (e.g., 60% in 2008), of the following

applications filed on paper:

100%

applications filed electronically but having the text body of the application submitted in image form:

3. Does your Office perform optical character recognition (OCR) on patent applications?

Yes

Please comment if necessary:

Patents:
for A-publication a purely automatic OCR via FineReader; since June 2011;
for B Publications:
- OCR via FineReader with manual choice of what/how to OCR;
- after Text Recognition a manual text correction; formating in MS-Word;
- printing;
- 100% of the documents checked by comparing origial paper and prepared document;
- corrections of detected errors.
Utiliy Models: the same procedure as for Patents - B Documents

Section 2: Promotion and use of WIPO Standard ST.22

4. Has your Office adapted the filing guidance that it provides to applicants to take into account the recommendations of the revised version of WIPO Standard ST.22?

Partially

Please comment if necessary:

Since 2011, the filing guidance Regulation "Verordnung des Präsidenten des Patentamtes über die Verfahren und die Publikationen im Bereich des Patentamtes (Patentamtsverordnung 2006 - PAV)" in the chapter "Gemeinsame Formvorschriften für die Beschreibung, die Patentansprüche (Ansprüche), die Zusammenfassung und die Zeichnungen" is based on recommendations of WIPO ST.22. This paragraph also refers to WIPO ST.22. http://www.patentamt.at/Media/PAV_2011.pdf.



http://www.patentamt.at/Media/PAV2011.pdf contains only the passages new/changed in comparision to the previous version of the regualtion.

5. Has your Office promoted the use by applicants of the recommendations provided by WIPO Standard ST.22?

Yes

Please comment if necessary:

In addition to the above mentioned recommendations in the "Verordnung", a colleague has translated relevant passages of WIPO ST.22 in German. This translation is also published on our website http://www.patentamt.at/Media/PB2010010I.pdf
as an attachement to the Autrian Gazette October 2010

6. If applicable, what publication means has your Office used to promote the use of WIPO Standard ST.22 (e.g., article in the official gazette, amendment of Office’s filing recommendations, publication on the Office's website, newsletters)?

Please specify the details (e.g., entry or section of the official gazette, URL of the location where the announcement is available):

- Publication of the german translation in the Austrian Gazette (October 2010)
- WIPO ST.22. has influenced passages of the regulation concerning the form of Patent & Utility Model applications

7. Has your Office promoted WIPO Standard ST.22 in any other way (e.g., conferences, information circulars)?

No

Section 3: Implementation of WIPO Standard ST.22

This Section 3 refers to the applications that are filed on paper or electronically (e-filed) but having the text body of the application submitted in image form (e.g., PDF or TIFF images).

8. Has your Office noticed any improvement in the quality of the formal presentation and layout of the applications that follow the recommendations of WIPO Standard ST.22?

Little improvement

Please comment if necessary:

The reason to change the regulation was that some applicants started to submit texts in font 7 or less. Our old regulation did not forsee such behaviour. With the new regulation we can ask the applicant to submit the application in a "readable" way.

9. Has your Office noticed any improvement in the OCR quality output that resulted from the applicants’ awareness of WIPO Standard ST.22?

No improvement

Please comment if necessary:

very few cases; furthermore applications submitted since begin of 2011 are not so far in their procedure that we OCR them;

10. Has your Office noticed any decrease in the OCR costs that have resulted from the applicants’ awareness of WIPO Standard ST.22?

No decrease

11. Does your Office use the non-conformity to WIPO Standard ST.22 as a reason to request replacement sheets of the application?

Yes

Please comment if necessary:

depending on the degree of non-conformity

12. If applicable, please indicate the percentage of applications for which replacement sheets are requested with respect to the total number of applications (filed on paper or e-filed) having the text body of the application submitted in image form, and the period of time of reference:

(e.g., 15% in the first half of 2009)

Percentage:

Please comment if necessary:

very few applications

13. Does your Office have the intention to take into account, for the calculation of fees, the level of compliance with WIPO Standard ST.22 of the applications filed on paper or e-filed but having the text body of the application submitted in image form?

No

If applicable, please explain how:

Section 4: OCR practices of IPOs

14. Since your answer to Question 3 was “Yes”, please indicate if the following purposes are applicable and, if “Yes”, the accuracy requirements established by your Office:

a) Security screening of patent applications

No

b) Publication of the patent applications

Yes

Accuracy requirements:

we only make a automated OCR, without any kind of checking.

c) Publication of the granted patents

Yes

Accuracy requirements:

OCR, text correction; formatting, review and correction of the erros are done manually for 100% of the documents

d) Please indicate other purpose(s) and corresponding accuracy requirements if necessary:

review by staff of 100%

15. Does your Office have in-house quality checking measures in place to control the quality of the OCRed patent documents?

Yes

Please provide a concise description of the measures (e.g., refer to the relative automation of the quality checking indicating if it comprises the review by staff of randomly selected output, and/or if it is based on the accuracy confidence metrics produced by the OCR software):

16. Does your Office OCR patent documents in foreign languages?

No

17. Does your Office outsource the OCR of patent documents?

No

18. If you answered “Yes” to the previous Question:

(a) If applicable, please indicate any comments or feedback that your Office might have received from the contractor about the recommendations of WIPO Standard ST.22:

(b) Please also describe the quality checking measures used to control the quality of the OCRed patent documents that are performed by your contractor:

(c) Since your answer to Questions 4, 8 or 13 was “Yes”, please indicate whether your Office has renegotiated, or intends to renegotiate, the service contract with its contractor as a consequence of the adoption of the revised version of WIPO Standard ST.22 by the Standards and Documentation Working Group (SDWG) on November 21, 2008:

Section 5:  Software and hardware used to OCR

19. What software tools does your Office, or its contractor, use to perform the OCR of patent documents?

Fine reader

20. Has your Office, or its contractor, developed OCR software extensions specific to patent documents?

No

21. What hardware does your Office, or its contractor, use to perform the OCR of patent documents?

Clients with Windows XP

Section 6: Workflow

22. Please describe the workflow for the OCR of your patent documents:

- examiner defines pages for publication -> pages are scanned - >OCR + spelling check + formatting in MS Word (manually) -> comparision formatted text / original paper pages -> correction of errors -> MS-Word transformed to pdf -> join this pdf with pdf of first page (which has been prepared separetly) -> and (for Utitlity models) with pdf of Search report

23. Does your Office itself check the quality of its OCRed patent documents?

Yes

Please provide a concise description of how the quality check is carried out:

100% of documents: a person is comparing the formatted document with the original text

24. Please describe how your Office handles patent documents found to be defective later in the process (e.g., after publication):

correction of errors and republication as B8 / B9

25. Please provide a concise response to the following issues concerning the storage of OCRed patent documents:

(a) Format(s) in which your Office stores the OCRed patent documents:

internally we keep the MS-Word format + the bookmarked pdf. we send the bookmarked pdf to EPO we use the bookmarked pdf for our Publication server

(b) Does the storage format(s) used by your Office allow for later quality improvements either by your Office or by external contractors?

Yes

Please comment if necessary:

restarting from the Word-document ;
for some months we also keep the FineReader Document, so we can restart in the FineReader and complete / change in this phase. However until now (since August 2009) we never used it.

(c) Does the storage format used by your Office allow for quick identification of patent documents with OCR defects?

No

(d) Does the storage format used by your Office allow for different renditions to view or exchange the OCRed patent documents (e.g., PDF, HTML)?

Yes

Please comment if necessary:

pdf ("text-pdf"); everything we can produce up from MS-Word or from pdf

(e) Does the storage format used by your Office retain all the raw detailed information obtained from the OCR process (e.g., individual character accuracy estimation, position in image, etc.)?

Yes

Please comment if necessary:

For some months we keep the "Fine reader document" which allows to complete the spelling check in Fine reader, or to redo some parts of the OCR

(f) Does the storage format used by your Office capture, in text format, table contents, and mathematical and chemical formulae?

depending on the complexity of tables and formulas we OCR them as image or as text.

26. Is the OCR of patent documents also used to increase the efficiency of the work of the Office, (e.g., bibliographic data input from paper applications can be considerably speeded up with accurate OCR)?

No

27. Does your Office OCR documents other than patent documents?

No

28. If it is known by your Office, please provide a description of the usages by your customers of the documents OCRed by your Office (e.g., internal office patent application searches by examiners, Internet patent application searches by the public, electronic products sold to private subscribers, etc.):

we publish the bookmarked pdfs on our publication server http://pubserv.patentamt.at/PublicationServer/search.jsp?lg=de

we send the pdfs togenther with bibliographic xml-data to EPO fro preparing the MIMOSA Cds, and enter them in their database.

29. Does your Office use OCRed patent documents provided by other offices?

Yes

Please indicate from which office(s) and for which documents, formats and purposes:

at least via the search tools: we use full text searches from Patentscope / EPO databases and others

Section 7: Additional comments

30. Please provide further comments regarding the implementation and promotion of WIPO Standard ST.22, as well as OCR practices of your Office, if you feel it is necessary:

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