Google Patents Widescreen Viewer

UPDATE (Jan 15, 2018): Ian and the great team at Google have rendered this extension unnecessary as of this writing. The sidebar is now collapsible, and there is a search bar on the top. The new figure viewer is very flexible and allows for expanding a figure to the needed width. There has also been a big JavaScript refactor and use of gzip to speed up page loading significantly. Excellent work!


Today I published a new Chrome browser extension called “Google Patents Widescreen” that makes Google Patents (patents.google.com/patent/) much more readable. The left-side search column is hidden, the text area is widened, and images are provided at greater resolution for readability.

A resolution width of 1920 works very well, though all narrower widths also provide improved readability.

Once it’s installed in Chrome, you don’t need to do anything — all Google Patents patent pages (with this syntax: patents.google.com/patent/) will automatically be modified for alternate presentation.

Note that the extension doesn’t send out any data, and in fact there’s no JavaScript — it’s purely just formatting tweaks.

Here’s the different in presentation from the normal view versus the extension’s enhanced view:

Google Patents Widescreen viewer
Google Patents Widescreen viewer