How to conduct a novelty search

  • Prepare an invention disclosure

  • Conduct a boolean search at

  • Note patent numbers, classes and subclasses

  • Conduct a full text search at

  • Conduct a non-patent literature search

  • Retain a patent searcher to search "shoes" at USPTO (or do it yourself)

  • Order a copy of each document, read each carefully

  • Follow up leads (references, etc.) at least two generations back