Most Common Design Patents 1842-2021

by Dennis Crouch

This is a remake of a video I made a few weeks ago. This time, I was able to go back to the 1840s and show the most-common design patent titles from each era.  To make the chart, I used a 14 year rolling average.  Thus, for example, the top-10 list shown for 2000 is actually the top-10 based upon the period 1987-2000.  The bulk of the data also comes via OCR of images and so there are some artifacts (although I did read-through the first 1,000  design patents).  One example that shows up in the data are the “island” patents — that word was somewhat randomly picked-up.  Enjoy.

I am cleaning-up the data a bit more and then will make it publicly available.

12 thoughts on “Most Common Design Patents 1842-2021

  1. 6

    Hint: There was just one.

  2. 5

    Real nice job, Dennis!

    Now I have a question for everyone, and no one can cheat!!! Does anyone know the number of design patents issued by the Confederate Patent Office (CPO)? Hint: Not many were issued. And for a bonus question, can anyone name the topic of the design patents issued by the CPO?

    1. 5.1

      No, but “the number of design patents issued by the Confederate Patent Office” definitely deserves an IPL blog trivial pursuit award of some kind. Perhaps the answer lies in that box of historic papers they were not yet able to find under the big former Robert E. Lee statute in Richmond?

      1. 5.1.1

        Hint: There was just one.

  3. 4

    Dear Dennis,

    Great presentation, thank you for your time and efforts. As a collector of patent models and spend a fair amount of time with designs in private practice, you presentation was consistent with my experiences.

    John Yirga

  4. 2

    Perhaps a 14 year moving average is a bit too long (also, variations in title may be better not separated).

  5. 1

    So, GUIs are the new stoves! Very nice video, Dennis.

    1. 1.1

      Yes, Graphic User Interfaces [computer screen icons] rising to the top of this design patent subject matter tracking chart over the years is especially interesting in view of the PTO, for several years, refused to even grant any design patents on screen display icons. Until they were reversed by an enlarged PTAB Board decision brought by professional friends of mine. That was “EX PARTE PAULIEN F. STRIJLAND AND DAVID SCHROIT Appeal No. 92-0623 April 2, 1992 HEARD: January 31, 1992.” PTO Commissioner Manbeck was on that Expanded Board panel. So, not surprisingly, the PTO Solicitor did not appeal to the Fed. Cir., and thus the PTO has been allowing screen icon design patents ever since, as long as at least a broken away part of a screen is shown in the design patent drawing or the icon is verbally described as on a screen.

      1. 1.1.1

        The examiner’s 171 rejection was affirmed in EX PARTE STRIJLAND.

        1. 1.1.1.1

          Hence the “as long as at least a broken away part of a screen is shown in the design patent drawing or the icon is verbally described as on a screen.”

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