Here is a pictorial of the process that describes how to understand the idea of "concepts" as they relate to patent claims and prior art. The main idea, as shown in the graphic below, is that patent claims can be represented concepts. We utilize this process because patent claims often use the same or similar words to cover a particular feature.
As above, the color-highlighting generally indicates features recited in the claim language. The different colors represent different features recited in the claim. The user determines how a claim can be divided into different concepts. In the next graphic, we show a group of concepts. Once concepts are identified for one claim, the same concepts can be used for other claims.
As below, three claims can be represented by seven concepts. Because certain concepts are repeated (as indicated by arrows), they are reused in different claims.
linking patent claims to concepts
In a final graphic (below), the concepts are shown to link the patent claims and the prior art. By analyzing the prior art using concepts, the user does not need to repeatedly refer back to the claim language. The concepts, not claim language, are used to analyze the prior art (another post on claim concepts here). At this level of prior art review, different teachings of the references can be matched up together. These mashups of the references form patent claim charts and invalidity contentions. Using the PatDek interface, different prior art mixes can now be generated by the user.