Just when you thought your obscure patents were safe in dusty government bookshelves…

“Fig 1. is a front elevational view of sunglasses showing my new design.”

sunglasses
— Shigeki Sueyoshi, 1981, Patent # D258662Guess what? Google has a Patent Search! It launched sometime last month, and is in beta. And like most trinket toys that Google leaves scattered around the web, I stumbled upon it by accident. Gotta love the “more” link above the regular Google search… To me, it seems to have more entertainment value than anything else. But I’m sure it’s a godsend to inventors. A quick news search brought up a few articles that criticized some errors in the system. I found one myself, actually. When clicking on the featured patent labeled “Zipper” (next to “Skateboard” and “Futuristic Toy Gun”), I was instead directed to the patent for the Expanding Internal Brake, created by Emil Zipper. But hey, it’s in beta.The point is, Google’s neat. And my love-hate relationship to them for dominating the world through the dissemination of useful technology continues.

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