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GGI RapidNews R&D Product Development eZine: Volume 3, Issue 2- February 12, 2002
GGI RapidNews is published monthly

FUTURE TRENDS

Annual IP Metrics: In the June 27, 2001 issue of Rapid News (Volume 2, Issue 5) we described the five IP metrics that CHI Research developed and MIT's Technology Review Magazine published in their March/April 2000 issue. These metrics are of interest because they rank how innovative companies in various industries are. You can find last June's Rapid News at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/GGI_RapidNews/Rnews.shtml.

The five IP metrics are essentially a methodology for determining corporate innovation. They are:

  • Technological Strength: The number of U.S. patents multiplied by the Current Impact Index (see below).
  • Number of Patents: The total number of U.S. patents awarded, excluding design and other special-case inventions.
  • Current Impact Index: The number of times a company's patents for the previous five years are cited in the current year, relative to all patents in the U.S. system. A value of 1.0 indicates average citation frequency.
  • Science Linkage: The average number of science references cited in a company's U.S. patents. "Science linkage" tracks the scientific papers cited in each patent to evaluate the closeness of a company's portfolio to cutting-edge research.
  • Technology Cycle Time: The median age in years of the U.S. patent references listed on a company's patents. "Technology cycle time" assesses how rapidly firms are turning technology - their own and others' - into inventions. By combining "Science Linkage" and "Technology Cycle Time," the scorecard provides a unique way to spot changes in a firm's intellectual property strategy and strength before they are otherwise apparent.

MIT's Technology Review Magazine (May 2001) carried the most recent CHI Research data. Last June, GGI RapidNews wrote:

"What seems to emerge from a review of changing company rankings over the five year period analyzed is that a company's Technological Strength over time varies, sometimes appreciably. For example, the top firms have changed position in seven of the eight industry groupings. Technological Strength requires that "leading edge" companies remain dynamic. The need to remain dynamic may mean patent volume (breadth) or patent focus in hot growth areas (depth). How close a company works to a technology cutting-edge may reflect the strength of its future market competitiveness. We are currently witnessing a relentless worldwide effort to create, optimize and control Intellectual Property, one of the major historical transitions affecting business this century."

There was greater stability in company rankings for Technological Strength (2000-2001) than the previous year in Aerospace and Chemicals. Significant ranking shakeups occurred in Automotive and Biotechnology & Pharmaceuticals. The other industries (Computers, Semiconductors, Telecommunications and Electrical/Electronics) saw moderate movement, particularly in standings above the top ten ranked companies.

[See MIT Technology Review Magazine May 2001 issue (Volume 104, Number 4, page 48), "The TR Patent Scorecard 2001."]. Visit http://www.techreview.com/magazine.

FEATURED iSTORE PRODUCT

Concurrent Product Development Videotapes - Masters Course: We are extending the deep discounting of our 9 hour CPD Videotape Course, part of the curriculum for the Masters in Engineering Management program at The Gordon Institute of Tufts University. This has been a required Master's course and has been taught by Brad Goldense since 1992.

In the mid 1990s, in conjunction with The Gordon Institute, we taped the course and packaged it into 8 videos. It remains current today as it was specifically designed to focus on the principles and techniques of creating rapid concurrent environments. It begins with a review of the key management science discoveries and research studies that show why concurrent methods will generally yield better quality lower cost products in less time.

Seven of the tapes are one-hour long and one is two-hours long (Baselining Change With Metrics). Each tape discusses a different major subject in creating and maintaining rapid product development environments. A single CPD Coursebook accompanies the videotapes. We will also provide you with a multiple choice Final Exam if you call us directly after your purchase (see contact information below).

This series has consistently sold for US$ 1600.00, plus shipping. We are offering the series at a 40% discount for US$ 960.00, plus shipping. The CPD Series was developed using analog technology, and it would take 16 digital CDs to capture what is on the 8 analog videotapes, so the product is offered in videotape format only.

In sequential order, the 8 videotapes are: Definitions & Driving Forces For Speed, Baselining Change With Metrics, Designing Concurrent Processes, Selecting Products Effectively, Creating Concurrent Teams, Defining Products, Reviewing Designs, and Creating Repeatable Environments.

Turn your browser to the following Featured Item URL for more product information: http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/cgi/catalog.cgi?display_promo

TECHNOLOGY AND SOFTWARE REVIEWS

5 Patents to Watch: It's always fun to speculate a bit on which potentially "disruptive technology" may break into future marketplace success. MIT Technology Review's (TR) editors are no different. They like to have some fun too! There were 182,223 U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) patents in 2000. TR chose the following 5 based on:

  • It was the cutting edge of an important field (technology hotbed).
  • It was beyond a simple scientific advance to a legitimate technological trend.
  • It potentially would transform existing businesses or create new industries.

IBM (PTO 6112225) has developed a "task distribution processing system and computational method," otherwise known as distributed computing. The patent brokers large computing tasks simultaneously to peripherally-subscribed computers with a special screen-saver that alerts the central computer to idle machine time. Peripheral computers receive tasks, based in part on available capacity, and return computational results. Potential applications are genome analysis, financial data crunching, weather forecasting and small/medium size company graphics-intensive tasks.

ProdiGene (PTO 6136320) has developed a method to express vaccines in plants. These bacterial or viral proteins bring edible vaccines to the marketplace. The prospects for global immunization through the elimination of scientific and political barriers captures the imagination. When eaten, these fresh, dried or ground food stuffs can elicit immune responses. There is no single technology. It is disease specific for the target population. Clinical trials are now being conducted and ProdiGene has access to largely challenge-free IP.

Lucent Technologies (PTO 6163636) has created an amplification method to improve signals through optical fiber, the backbone of high-speed networks. Existing amplification methods are expensive and prone to breakdown. But amplification is needed. Signals need to be boosted every 70 KM. Based on a feature of laser physics called "Rama Scattering," laser beam blasts from the opposite direction have the ability to amplify signals. This allows light beams to travel further, and to transmit data over a greater part of the optical spectrum. In addition, data is less disrupted. Greater bandwidth is created, offering the possibility of a future optical Internet.

The University of Massachusetts Medical Center and The Children's Medical Center (PTO 6027744) have teamed to make advances in tissue engineering. There is a shortage of human organs for transplantation. Formation of tissue and organs is therefore medically important. The challenge is getting cells to grow into tissue with the same properties and shape as native tissue. This method adds cells to a biodegradable polymer scaffold, which uses a hydrogel polymer to keep the cells in their place. The resulting structure is then implanted. The method has been tested on rats with a surgically severed spinal cord whose neural precursor cells were replicated with a polymer scaffold seeded with the hydrogel neural cell mixture. The rat's use of its limbs was regained.

Hewlett-Packard (PTO 6128214) has developed a "molecular wire crossbar memory" that potentially raises the bar for transistors-on-a-chip (see last month's Rapid News for more on nanotechnology at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/GGI_RapidNews/RapidNewsVol2Iss10.shtml). As we know, transistors on a semi-conductor chip are the computer's brains. The smaller, the more, the better. Are we reaching the physical limits of silicon-based chips? HP is not alone in conceiving the use of organic molecules instead of silicon. However, an IC using molecules may equal trillions of tiny electronic devices. HP's molecular memory device patent is based on crossbar arrays of nanowires sandwiching molecules that act as on/off switches regulating voltage differences. The supercomputer of the future?

[See MIT Technology Review Magazine May 2001 issue (Volume 104, Number 4, pages 41-46), "Patents to Watch" by David Talbot, Erika Jonietz, Eric S. Brown, Alexandra Stikeman and David Rotman.] Visit http://www.techreview.com/magazine.

NEW WEB CONTENT

Calendar: For several years now, GGI has been maintaining a current list of Conferences and and Seminars for users of our web site. A year ago we added Distance Learning programs. We are now announcing a fairly major rearchitecting of the site which will make it easier to surf the options.

First, we consolidated three Gateways into the new "Strategic, Knowledge, and General Management" Gateway.

Next, we separated three Gateways in order to make it easier for our two primary user industries to review offerings specific to their area. Pharmaceutical, Biotech, Life Science, Medical Products, Medical Devices, Diagnostic Medical Instruments offerings are now listed separately from Mechanical, Electro-Mechanical, Electronic, and High-Tech offerings.

Finally, we have formally extended the horizon of all Calendar Gateways to 2005 so all you busy bees will have plenty of time to plan in advance. Producers are informing us with longer horizon projections than in the past. This rearchitecting will also speed up searching within a given calendar year.

If you have Bookmarked GGI's Calendar URL, please use the instructions provided below to update your bookmarks.

Bookmark/update the new Mega Calendar Gateway at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/calendar3.shtml . The calendar organization is now much like the New Product Development process itself, in that marketing comes before development, which precedes manufacturing. Now marketing, product development and manufacturing each have Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Life Science pages.

Bookmark/update the 2002 Marketing & Sales Conference Calendar: Mechanical, Electro-Mechanical, Electrical & Electronic Conferences Gateway located at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/MarketingConf02.shtml. The 2002 Marketing & Sales Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology and Life Science conference page is located at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/MarPharmConf02.shtml.

Bookmark/update the 2002 Product Development Conference Calendar: Mechanical, Electro-Mechanical, Electrical & Electronic Gateway located at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/proddevconf02.shtml. The counterpart Product Development Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology & Life Sciences Conferences Gateway located at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/proddevpharmconf02.shtml.

Bookmark/update the 2002 Manufacturing Conference Calendar: Mechanical, Electro-Mechanical, Electrical & Electronic Gateway located at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/manufacturing-automation-conference-calendar-mechanical-electronic-2002.shtml. The counterpart Product Development Pharmaceutical, Biotechnology & Life Sciences Conferences Gateway located at http://www.goldensegroupinc.com/gateway/ManPharmConf02.shtml respectively.

CONFERENCES OF INTEREST

IIR'S R&D and Clinical Trial Performance with Metrics: This conference was held in Princeton, NJ on January 28-29, 2002. Due to its success, IIR is planning to rerun this conference some time later this spring. We will keep you posted. Speakers from Schering-Plough, Abbott Labs, Astrazeneca, Pfizer, Milkhaus Laboratory, Scirex, and other leading corporations all contributed to a strong program. Many valuable approaches to metrics and performance management/measurement were put forth for Development and especially for the management of Clinical Trials. Brad Goldense's paper, which focused on R&D Metrics for Diagnostic Instruments and Sensor Development, was well received. Some of the presentations may be available for downloading. Please surf http://www.iirusa.com to see what is available.

Society of Concurrent Product Development Annual Conference: The 7th Annual Conference for SCPD will be held at the Boston University Executive Education Center in Tyngsboro, MA on Wed.-Thurs. May 29-30, 2002. Several world-recognized speakers will be participating, but their names cannot officially be released yet. This conference is a great value. Please visit http://www.scpdnet.org for further updates and registration information.

UPCOMING PUBLIC SPEAKING

Boothroyd-Dewhurst's 2002 International Forum on DFMA: This internationally respected conference will be held in Newport, Rhode Island on June 10-12, 2002. Mark your calendars. If you wish to see the leading practitioners and thought leaders of not only DFMA, but Design for Serviceability, Design for Disassembly, Design for Recycleability, Design for Environment, and Green Design. Brad Goldense will be presenting a newly written paper "Measuring R&D Projects: Best Practices" at the 2002 Forum. Please surf http://www.dfma.com for further updates and registration information.
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RapidNews is an e-mail publication from Goldense Group, Inc (GGI). Its subject matter includes survey findings, company news, book reviews, key industry conferences and R&D information of interest to clients and associates. Please send communications to rn(at)goldensegroupinc.com. Thank you.
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