Patent & Trademark Res. Center

Inventor Links

The links below are collected here to help you locate more information in searching for prior art or in making money with your invention. The Akron-Summit County Public Library provides these external sources for informational purposes only, and inclusion on this page does not imply endorsement of individuals or of their services.

Prior Art Searching Links

United States Patent and Trademark Office
The official United States Patent and Trademark page offers full text information on current and past patents and trademarks. It also has information on how to apply such as the necessary forms and fees.

European Patent Office
The website for the European patent office is the place to start if you are looking for information on foreign patents. It covers both European and non European patents.

United States Copyright Office
The official United States Copyright page offers information on how to get a copyright as well as historical information on current and past United States copyrights.

Google Patent Search
Google's patent search offers full text to current and past United States patents using the familiar Google search interface.

Akron-Summit County Public Library's Research Databases
Use this site to link to indexes of magazine and newspaper articles related to your industry. You will need an ASCPL library card to access.

World Intellectual Property Organization
Alphabetical list of intellectual property offices worldwide.

Bringing your Invention to Market Links

AkronScore Chapter 81
Offers help to start a small business or to make a small business more profitable including individual counseling, mentoring, workshops, and seminars.

Lorain Community College's Fab Lab
Provides a collection of commercially available machines that can be used to "conceptualize, design, develop, fabricate and test” your invention.

Small Entrepreneur and Economic Development (SEED) Legal Clinic
Low-cost legal and business assistance provided by University of Akron School of Law students with faculty supervision.

Inventors Digest Magazine
The magazine dedicated to educating and inspiring independent and professional inventors. Check out their "Resources" section online for loads of great links, or read the print version in the Library's Magazines and Newspapers section.

Akron Makerspace
Akron Makerspace is a community-operated place where people can meet and work on projects. They provide an environment for people to educate, create and share amongst themselves and others within the domains of technology, art and science.

TechZone @Main
TechZone is open to inventors, artists, small business owners, and creative types of all kinds. Some of the tools available include recording studios, laser engraver, vinyl printer, green screen room, design computers, 3D printers, button/magnet maker and many more.

Submitting Your Idea

Many (but not all) consumer products companies accept submissions for new products. One way to find these companies, and the part of their website which lists the submission guidelines, is by doing a simple google search on the company name and the phrase "idea submission." For instance "proctor and gamble" "idea submission," ignoring the ads which will appear in a shaded box before the actual search results.

Often times, the first or second hit on the results page will be a link to that company’s webpage for submitting an idea. Be sure to read any notices, guidelines, and FAQs before you send off your invention.And be aware that most companies will want your invention to be patented or patent-pending before you send them a submission.

Review the USPTO's scam prevention advice before making any move to submit your invention to or work with any firm offering promotion assistance.

Local Inventor Groups

Akron Inventors Club
The Akron Inventors Club meets the 2nd Thursday of each month at Main Library in Meeting Room 2AB on the High Street Level. Doors open at 5:30 pm for networking and refreshments, meetings begin at 6:00 pm. For current meeting information, go to:

Other Resources

OHIO SECRETARY of STATE is where you would go if you want to incorporate your business, check for the availability of a business name or get a state registered trademark.

22 N 4th St, Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: (877) 767-6446

SMALL BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT CENTER serves Summit, Medina and Portage counties. Part of the nationwide network managed by the Small Business Administration (SBA). They offer one on one counseling as well as a variety of seminars and workshops, many free of charge for the entrepreneur or small business owner.

526 S. Main St., Ste. 813 (The Akron Global Business Accelerator)
Akron, OH 44311

Patent & Trademark Resource Center

Akron-Summit County Public Library was named a Patent & Trademark Resource Center (PTRC) in 1995. PTRCs are a nationwide network of public, academic and special libraries spread throughout the United States. We offer access to resources from the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) in a variety of formats, including instructional classes, books, databases and handouts.

Some of the activities and services offered are introductory classes in patents and patent searching and in general intellectual property and access to PubEast for advanced patent searching.

Our USPTO-trained librarians can get you started in your preliminary patent search, and guide you to the resources to help you launch a successful business venture.

Sign up for one of our classes, search USPTO databases for patent and trademark information or check out some of our books on how to secure a patent or trademark, and/or develop and market your idea.

Check out the Handy Inventor Links page for a variety resources that are available to the inventor or entrepreneur.

Class Handouts

Library disclaimer:
This content is being provided "as is" without warranties, either expressed or implied, of any kind. This information is provided with the understanding that the Akron-Summit County Public Library is not engaged in rendering legal or other professional services. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional should be sought.

Introduction to Intellectual Property is a basic class covering patents, trademarks, copyright, and trade secrets. For anyone who has ever wondered "Just what is a patent/trademark/copyright?"

Conducting a Preliminary Patent Search covers the hows and whys of getting a patent, and conducting a preliminary patent search using the USPTO website.

The US Patent & Trademark Office has really great instructional videos on their Trademark Information Network. Check out their Trademark Basics page: You can also download the booklet Basic Facts About Trademarks or pick up a copy in the Science & Technology department.

Contact Us

Please contact the Science & Technology Division at 330-643-9075 or email us to reserve your seat in any of these free classes.