Tricks of the Trade: Searching the unsearchable

Patent searching is already black magic, wrapped in a puzzle, inside an enigma, passing through a black box, and thinking about how something could be unsearchable is an extra layer you just don’t need, so, how do you find something you can’t search for?   To assist, I’ll define what I consider unsearchable.  It’s essentially

Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known

The sentence above is a quote from a journalist, Sharon Begley, in an article interviewing the astronomer, Carl Sagan, and is often misattributed to him.  How does it apply to patent searching?  You’re the one with an idea for the incredible something, and you will want it known, but as I often see, just because

Patent Searching: What are you risking by going it alone?

Once upon a time I studied thermodynamics. I was told that the first time you study thermodynamics you don’t know what you are doing; the second time you think you know what you are doing; and the third time you know you don’t know what you are doing, but by that time it’s too late