A formulation for patenting content-based retrieval processes in digital libraries

Hideyasu Sasaki, Yasushi Kiyoki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we present a formulation and case studies of the conditions for patenting content-based retrieval processes in digital libraries, especially in image libraries. Inventors and practitioners demand a formulation of the conditions for patenting data-processing processes as computer-related inventions in the form of computer programs. A process for content-based retrieval often consists of a combination of prior disclosed means and also comprises means for parameter setting that is adjusted to retrieve specific kinds of images in certain narrow domains. We focus on requirements for technical advancement (nonobviousness) in the combination of data-processing means, i.e., processes and specification (enablement) on the means for parameter setting in computer programs. Our formulation follows the standards of patent examination and litigation on computer-related inventions in the US. We confirm the feasibility and accountability of our formulation by applying it to several inventions patented in the US.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)57-74
Number of pages18
JournalInformation Processing and Management
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Jan
Externally publishedYes


  • Content-based image retrieval (CBIR)
  • Intellectual property
  • Multimedia digital libraries
  • Parameter setting
  • Patent law

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Media Technology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Library and Information Sciences


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