I was asked the following question recently: I have a great new idea. I would like to gauge interest by publicly describing what my new product does.
When you have an invention, and you are not ready to file a complete non-provisional patent application with the United States Patent and Trademark
When you (the inventor) submit an application to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for a design or utility patent, an examiner
Ok. You just thought of the next great invention. Now what? You know you should do a preliminary search to see if your invention already exists