The Wonderful World Of Search Patents

    June 20, 2006

There were quite a few patent applications filed this week. Some of them were rather mundane; others looked more interesting. In terms of sheer volume, Yahoo led the way with five, while Google requested four. Go Daddy,, and Xerox tied for last with one application each.

One of Yahoo’s patent applications is related to its recent string of patents on “search unit”-type technology. This latest one recognizes that when users enter a two-word query, the words may not represent a single concept; they may just be two keywords.

The process described in this patent application would detect when a user deletes one of those words and then searches again. Yahoo would then try to “return targeted ads related to the more relevant term or terms along with the search results.”

One of Google’s patent applications indicates the company is trying to clean up its Gmail service. The technology would scope out the links in incoming e-mails, and if they led to a spam site, the e-mail itself would be classified as spam.

Microsoft filed for a self-explanatory patent called “Searching electronic program guide data.” Go Daddy requested a patent named “Email filtering system and method,” which, like the Google patent, would inspect links within messages. And Xerox filed for a patent for a system that might use “the search history of the user or others to refine the results of searches.”

You can read about this week’s other patent applications at SearchEngineWatch, where a list is compiled.

Add to | DiggThis | Yahoo! My Web


Doug is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest eBusiness news.