Research notebooks are vital to any laboratory or business that has employees who are working on a project that may one day be patented. Specific notebooks are designed for research use with features to record daily information during the processes dealing with the project.
Detailed notes are painstakingly recorded by hand on the pages of a notebook. Preliminary, then highly detailed sketches may also be required when a person is working on an invention or scientific experiment. A researcher may keep daily records, which provide proof of dates for when work is conducted. This protects the data from being claimed or stolen by another entity. Should the laboratory or business ever have to go to court over the ownership of the materials, the meticulously recorded data is readily available for additional proof and protection.
A detailed pre-printed series of pages, which feature graph paper, signature blocks, and areas to list the project number and other pertinent information, fills the notebook. These notebooks are designed to meet criteria for patent laws.
Archival paper, which is acid-free, is important for any permanent record. The use of archival ink is also vital for note-taking and sketches that must last for decades. Scans and computer records are fine, but the original paperwork is the absolute when a patent is being challenged in court. The research notebook is independent of any one person or team, as a long-lived project may be done by a series of individuals who are employed by a specific business.