From Dir. Iancu: USPTO IT Services

The following comes from USPTO Director Andrei Iancu:

Andrei IancuI know the past week has been disruptive to certain aspects of your usual business with the USPTO. I deeply appreciate your patience and diligence as we restored our PALM database. I also want to acknowledge the many people within the USPTO who worked around the clock to resolve this complex issue.

In the process of getting everything back up and running, we sought not merely to restore but also to improve our PALM operating systems. Among other things we now have enhanced servers and performance optimization, such that the resulting condition is better than it was before the outage.

With services restored, our focus has shifted to minimizing any residual impact on you. I remain in constant contact with our business unit leaders and our Acting Chief Information Officer to address your needs as best we can.

Thank you again for your patience and understanding in the face of these challenges.

32 thoughts on “From Dir. Iancu: USPTO IT Services

  1. 5

    Ah, like the $200 extra in fees for paper filing + mailing charges ?!
    How about an AUTOMATIC refund ? !

  2. 4

    As noted, a specific explanation of this latest major PTO IT crash has not yet been provided. However, the indicated “enhanced servers” suggests that this latest PTO software/server disaster is at least partially related to user-overload of Public Pair? [Which includes technology and prior art searching, search engines, web crawlers, etc.]
    Since Public Pair is public information, why not urge the PTO to move Public Pair off to a major “cloud service provider” that can handle it?
    There is an even bigger related PTO IT concern for which the public has not received adequate assurance. It is the vital protection of the huge amount of major new U.S. and foreign technology and commercial lead times, and their sources, in all of the yet-unpublished patent applications in PTO PRIVATE Pair and elsewhere in the PTO databases. [Undoubtedly more valuable new technology information than in in any other single database.] Given the massive extent of successful hacking of other supposedly-secure U.S. government and industry data sites, and the extensive efforts of certain foreign governments in industrial espionage, this should be a very high PTO IT priority.

    1. 4.1

      We were told that the issue occurred during some kind of maintenance. Server was brought down for a reboot, server started coming back up, and in the process, something got corrupted. If OCIO ever figured out what caused the problem, that info hasn’t made it out to the corps yet.

      PALM is a horrible web of backwards compatibility. It was in use decades ago, to track the location of paper files (“Patent Application Location & Monitoring”), and since then, basically everything else has been built around it. Examiner dockets, production and docket management scores (both of which are far more complex now than they were ten years ago), tracking of application events (filings, actions, etc.), and various other features have been piled on top of it, and a lot of old fields are still present in the database but no longer used. PALM’s original function of paper file location tracking is barely used – you can request paper files for old cases still, and it’s still used for tracking the location of application artifacts (like when you file a book with an IDS or color drawings).

      PALM interfaces with other databases and applications as well, including OACS and PE2E/OC (for drafting OAs), IFW (which stores and indexes the images of all of the documents in an application), RAM (which tracks payments), PE2E/DAV and PAIR (internal and external interfaces into cases and their file wrappers), and various others that I can’t think of right now.

      All this is to say that it’s pretty remarkable that it works as well as it does. It’s long past time for a replacement, though (which they have been working on, but it’s not ready yet).

  3. 3

    Dennis — it is long past when MM should be banned from your otherwise superb, professional blog.

    When his comments reach the point that you (I hope) wouldn’t let your own kids read them (I wouldn’t let mine) — it’s time to join Gene in cutting him off.

    They’ve reached that point.

    Probably like the large majority of your readers, I’d love to read the comments, insight, thoughts, and recommendations from other patent professionals and IP thought leaders who would add much value to your forum.

    But we never will.

    Not as long as you permit MM to roam.

    Isn’t PatentlyO better than this?

    1. 3.1

      It doesn’t seem to be better and at this point I’m beginning to ascribe MM’s viewpoints to Dennis….there is no other reasonable explanation for allowing it to continue.

      1. 3.1.1

        More than thirteen and a half years now the very same blight from Malcolm has persisted.

        All kinds of “editorial controls” have been enacted – and done so in an uneven manner.

        In light of the combination of these two things, not only can this be attributable to the “editorial policies” of this blog, but a (rebuttable) presumption that such ARE attributable can be argued to have been obtained.

  4. 2

    What challenges? I guess it doesn’t matter how/why it happened? Any interest in explaining how the PTO plans on it not happening again? This is now the second time that a lengthy outage has occurred, on top of the daily sporadic outages.

    Also, is there any logical a reason to tie the contingency EFS in with the same system that houses the primary PALM database? What’s the good in a contingency system if its availability is inextricably tied to the availability of the system that it’s supposed to back up?

    It’s simple: Two is one and one is none.

    1. 2.1

      It is part of the citizens of the US becoming peons. People in charge don’t have to explain. I don’t think that contained an apology either. And it described “the outage” as if it was an act of G*d.

      This is the way all people in charge now speak to us peons.

    2. 2.2

      I had a similar reaction – a few words of explanation would’ve sated our curiosity. Server software failure or misconfiguration? Hardware failure? Electrical problems and fried circuitry? Network outage? Third-party vendor failure?

      The lack of explanation is a little disconcerting. I suppose I’ll raise the issue of a security breach, since we seem to have some, ah, “challenges” from abroad that target our infrastructure. Consider all the sensitive data the PTO holds: strictly confidential unpublished applications, EFS-Web payment information, deposit accounts, personnel files.

      If I had some spare time, I’d submit a FOIA request with some targeted questions.

    3. 2.3

      This was an email sent to the core. I think he was referring to the challenges faced by examiners in getting work done. I saw it here first and thought it was odd, then I read my email. After I realized it was an email to the office it made more sense. He has to toe a fine line with the unions.

      Still should explain what happened. The hacking theory seems to be gaining steam so if its not that they should stomp it out quick.

  5. 1

    “Hi. I was nominated by a criminal fraud serial adultering path 0 l0gical lying narcissistic r@ pist r@ c ist @ h0le. That’s my legacy and it will never be anything more than that. This is true of all Re pu k k k es, including your Rep u k k ke co-workers. We all s u ck. We are all @ ss h0les or, at best, incredibly ign 0rant. Thank you. Director Iancu.”

    So much fun watching the wheels fall off. What a bunch of disgusting p i g s.

      1. 1.1.1

        You just can’t let it go with politics

        Nope. I’m not an enabler of criminal ne0-N @ zi s cu m b@ gs.

        Sorry, snowflake.


            if you are not acting like Malcolm, you are “one of them.”

            Right. If you’re silent about what’s going on, you’re complicit.


              “Right. If you’re silent about what’s going on”

              What’s going on? Are black jewish mexicans with disabilities who are islamic being drug through the streets on the ball hitches of dodge ram pickups?

              Or are a couple of thots that made a quick payday accusing the president of having an affair causing still more problems and giving trump infinite air time for the next month?


            Last week in Georgia, the Randolph County Board of Elections announced a proposal to close seven of its nine polling locations. The backlash was swift and fierce. With 61 percent of the county’s residents identifying as black, this was widely understood by civil and voting rights organizations as nothing more than a blatant attempt at voter suppression. The ACLU, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights Under Law all threatened to sue should the proposal pass. And on Friday morning, amid the statewide and national attention, the two-person Randolph County Board of Elections held a five-minute meeting in which they rejected the plan, allowing the polling locations to remain open.

            “How dare the ACLU inject race into politics!” <— the kind of sick horseshirt that "anon" and his glib cohorts spew over the Internet on a regular basis


              <— the kind of sick horseshirt that "anon" and his glib cohorts spew over the Internet on a regular basis

              Totally baseless and absolutely incorrect.

              Atttempting to keep this forum geared to its stated purpose carries NO such actions as you seek to accuse.

              Crouch – put your pet on a leash, please.


              “the two-person Randolph County Board of Elections held a five-minute meeting in which they rejected the plan, allowing the polling locations to remain open.”

              So two people thought about closing some polling stations and decided against it and now it’s a race war? Or whatever? What’s this got to do with anything other than liberals and leftists being but thurt? I also lol that I have yet to hear about any actual black people being upset about this non-kerfuffle. What’re the odds that it’s just some white saviorism? 90%?


              It would have been a bit more honest to mention that (a) the “two-person Randolph County Board of Elections” comprises one white man and one white woman and (b) once the proposal was made, the “two-person Randolph County Board of Elections” followed the law by holding public meetings and then holding the vote on the proposal the minimum required 2 weeks later.

              While there are plenty of examples of “repubs gone wild”, this one isn’t anything like what is being portrayed by HuffPo, once you dig into the facts.


                Oops, silly error on my part:

                “Randolph County Board of Elections comprises one white man and one black woman” (not “white woman” as originally writ)

                Sorry for the mixup.

      2. 1.1.2

        He gets away with it. No one else comes close to the amount of non-patent law rants that pollute this forum.

    1. 1.3

      MM – life lesson here, one you should have learned back in grade school:

      People have different views on things. It doesn’t make them intrinsically evil to disagree with you. In fact, with a bit of an open mind, you can learn and grow and even strengthen your own position by listening to others in a cordial and professional manner.

      Also, think of all the productive things you could be doing with your life if you weren’t so wrapped up in the politics! And before you say that you aren’t wrapped up in politics, I’m going to let your actions speak for themselves, you know, if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck. It’s one thing to be involved in politics (a good thing), it’s quite another to be obsessed, engrossed, and fully preoccupied by politics such that you are crippled from doing anything else.

      1. 1.3.1

        People have different views on things. It doesn’t make them intrinsically evil to disagree with you.

        Oh my f ing g*d please keep digging. My Friday just got a lot more entertaining.

        News flash: Not everyone is as gullible as you. Not everyone falls for the “both sides do it” horseshirt that you have fallen for. Not everyone is a patent attorney or agent with a nice job who can afford to be glib while a toxic g@ping @ h0le destroys peoples lives while doing everything he can to enrich himself.

        you are crippled from doing anything else.

        Hardly. I have a pretty nice life. In part, that’s because I was lucky enough to grow up during a time when public education was valued. In part it’s because I was just … lucky. Unfortunately, to get to where I am from where I started (the lower eschelons of the working class) you need to be a whole lot luckier than you used to be. The entire point of the Re pu k k k e party, of course, is to make the rich richer and screw everybody else. Who doesn’t know this in 2018? If you’re a patent attorney and you can’t admit this in 2018, then you are a f—–g @ h0le, period. I don’t like people like you. You need to f off and die. I will help you the first part. In fact, I will do everything I can to make it easy for you to f off.

      2. 1.3.2

        with a bit of an open mind, you can learn and grow and even strengthen your own position by listening to others in a cordial and professional manner.


        The “civility” card! Yes, let’s all be quiet and nice while the tweeter-in-chief smears his f e c e s over everyone who wasn’t born white and rich like he was, and who simultaneously gives bjs to neo-N@ zis.

        Riiiiiiiiiiight. Great idea!


          You really don’t get it do you. You’re doing nothing help to your cause. People like you are the reason Trump was voted in. Based on my feelings for the lunatic, I would recommend you stop.


            It’s even worse than merely “doing nothing help to your cause.” – Malcolm IS the Trump of these boards, the mirror Left version of an emotional two year old who must have his way and must say what he wants to say, no matter how ill-fitting it may be for THIS forum.

            He cares nothing at all except for his own views.

      3. 1.3.3

        “It doesn’t make them intrinsically evil to disagree with you.”

        It does if you disagree with MM. He’s of a very special king muh victim status heritage lineage and political orientation. You see, if you disagree with them, you’re ra cist. And se xist. And a hom ophobe. And a xen ophone. And ag eophone. And many other words that have been adapted to describe those that disagree with them. It’s called “a narrative” (story). And all of those things are “ev il”. Tho mainly only if white cis hetero christian male capitalists etc. gets involved in them, some other groups get excluded from condemnation (also this is totally not a narrative war on the evi l white cis hetero christian capitalist patriarchs btw, banish the thought!). And indeed those things basically make you a nazi, which also is ev il, as you know. If you even have the balls to ID him as this special caste, shall we call it, of individual it’s “an accusation”, and you’re automatically evil.

        They taught you, and MM, this in grade school without you picking up on it. But he did. And they’ve been teaching you this in your media all your life. And he’s been paying attention. Loving that power.

        “Also, think of all the productive things you could be doing with your life if you weren’t so wrapped up in the politics! ”

        He has to be. Otherwise he’ll be oppressed and probably killed by the “ev il” whitey who lives under his bed (who he won’t even consider leaving to go join his own special ethnostate). See, his leftist media told him so. And he paid attention in grade school.

        Totally separate from that, maybe you’d like to consider making a donation to teach kids in grade school to fight ha te? Nobody involved will everrrrrr have their social status raised to that of a nobility or anything like that! I promise! And nobody else will be branded evil! Again, I promise!

        link to

        They’re learning “how to eradicate ha te”! Not by branding those that disagree with them as evil or anything like that! You know, through inclusivity and diversity, and and and and etc. Again, not by branding those that disagree with them as evil or anything like that.

        link to


          It does if you disagree with MM.

          Which is part of his “one-bucketing.” It’s him against the “heathens” – and fits your characterization of Leftist “white” saviour. He – and his views/feelings are simply too important to be constrained by anything as plebeian as “appropriate forum” or staying on topic. “His” topic is all that matters, and if you disagree than you are in the bucket.

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