Patents contain much technological information. This paper demonstrates that patent analysis facilitates a unique scheme for technology development. Two cases are employed to illustrate the effectiveness of a patent database. The first case provides strategic planning for developing Light Emitting Diode (LED) material technology. The second case, involving Thin Film Transistor (TFT), displays that the development trend in related patents corresponds to the technology roadmap in the industrial sector. To reduce the uncertainties of solely employing patent data, this study also incorporates academic journal findings and industrial information. Results presented herein demonstrate that patents can function not only as a map for tracking the technology trajectory, but also a guidepost for technology planning and forecasting.