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Limestone Search is Here, and Not for Obvious Reasons

by: Luke Barbin, CEO

The Truth About Patent Research Tools

We built our Limestone patent research platform because effective patent research requires human intervention. That’s right, I said what all too often goes unsaid in our industry, but that is widely known to be true.  The truth is why everyone’s eyes glaze over when they see disconnected patent tool marketing promises of AI and Machine learning that solve world hunger and patent research with a single keystroke.

I realize how oxymoronic the premise of my first sentence above sounds, that we built software because what you really need to accomplish your research objective are human resources.  Perhaps I can clarify, what you need to achieve high quality patent research are efficient and motivated human resources.

Machine intervention in patent research is just a means to an end.  The tools developed thus far, in our opinion, have grown too stale for the industry, the researchers, and the end consumers of patent information. Why? Because most tool developers have sought to supplant the researcher instead of enhancing them or energizing them.

I believe that the “best” patent research tools on the market today all have one thing in common: an excellent researcher.


Excellent patent researchers tend to have two things in common, besides their technical acumen, and their ability to review, evaluate, and cull patent information very quickly. They almost universally:

1. Have uncanny abilities to approximate their search in queries that generate results sets that are high yield (e.g., likely to result in uncovering the most responsive references per unit time spent reviewing); and

2. Enjoy the chase— they have an innate drive to search for something, even if an almost impossible task in the time available, until they find it.  They enjoy the pursuit, and they simply hate to lose.

embracing the Patent Researchers

Our goal in developing Limestone was to maximize these two attributes in any patent research project. So, we developed numerous algorithms (a dozen today, and growing) that work in conjunction to help researchers more quickly approximate their search to a degree that only machines can accomplish. And, we then use additional algorithms to generate a high yield corpus of results that requires the researcher to finish the job, but that infinitely increases the satisfaction of their “hunt”.

Patent researchers operate current tools like manual transmissions.  They change the gears at various times to propel the project based on the objective or type of patent search.  Whereas Limestone is more akin to an automatic transmission.  Someone still needs to drive the project, but Limestone handles many of the situation-specific operations so you, frankly, don’t have to even be knowledgeable about them. 

Limestone is an agnostic research platform having various configurations and algorithms that change, sometimes substantially, depending on the objective of a research project.  This allows one to achieve any one or more of a variety of different objectives including, for example, invalidity/prior art, FTO/clearance, patentability, landscape, collection, licensing, or patent-to-product mapping research.

Limestone has been tested by researchers of all skill levels against a large volume of ground truth data (both internal and external to TECHSON), and the outcomes are surprising us beyond our wildest imagination. We will be releasing more information about our product in the coming weeks as we move to make this technology available to anyone who wants to conduct better patent research or to consume better patent intelligence faster, while enjoying the experience.

Contact us to learn more about Limestone or see a demonstration of its results. 

Limestone can help:

Professional Patent Researchers or Search Firms

- conduct a high volume of patent research

- overcome job dissatisfaction and/or high employee burnout/turnover

- increase customer satisfaction and trust in quality of your results

- compete with pricing pressures of offshore outsourcing competitors

End Consumers of Professional Patent Research

-displeased with the information you are getting from the “leading” providers and tools?

-need various levels of research, not one size fits all?

USPTO or Domestic or International Patent Offices and their examiners

- under pressure to reduce research time, increase examiner satisfaction, and most importantly increase patent quality?

Novice Researchers, R&D Scientists et al.

- may not even know how to conduct patent research but who would like to find information