Do Patents Matter? Lynne Jolitz Says “There’s Gold in those parchments”

Ever since the Internet bubble burst, I’ve heard the same old refrain “Why file a patent? It’s costly – patent attorneys and research alone may cost up to a quarter of a million dollars. It’s slow – grants typically take 3-5 years, assuming you pass muster. And it’s useless – you’ve got to defend patents, and you get precious little for licensing them.

In my career, I’ve filed, fought for, and received patents, alone and with others. There’s no bigger rush than getting that parchment with the gold seal and red ribbon with your name on it. It is cool.

Recently an inventor of a granted patent, upon hearing of my latest grant and frustrated by his own lack of recognition, lashed out at me, saying “but what chance do you actually have of defending the patent?” Which got me thinking – Do Patents matter anymore?

Think this area is mined out. Hardly. Recent trends in patent litigation are proving very profitable to lawyers, entrepreneurs, and technologists. So dust off those patent portfolios and join Lynne Jolitz as I discuss Do Patents Matter?, a special In the DataCenter production.

In the DataCenter – ISP’s and Video Stream Revenues Part II

Continuing on the discussion of evaluating the vanishing value of video streams, Dan and I broaden the discussion to encompass other companies, not just ISP’s, who are dependent on moving more bits across that wire.

How much value a video stream provides is not only important for a datacenter group debating this issue to understand. It is also important to companies like Cisco. According to some of the “M&A” guys I chat with, Cisco’s entire acquisition strategy right now is predicated on delivery of VOIP/VOD/MMP – and massive video production aka MVP (“Massive Video Production Debut“) fits right in. It’s all about end-to-end quality from the tech perspective, and building service models that deliver value from the business perspective.

So what does Dan Kusnetzky, Program Vice President, System Software at IDC say about this…

In the DataCenter – ISP’s and Video Stream Revenues

A debate recently arose among the datacenter staff. The oldsters think the cost per stream is more than the value per stream right now, because the cost of media is high and everyone looks at things single (one at a time). But the youngsters have noticed that a lot of new content creators are coming online wanting lower cost deployment of media, and some even lower the production time/cost itself through use of services like . They worry that the value per stream is eroding fast, and that’s a lot of ISP’s bread and butter.

So even if the value per stream is currently high, as you increase the number of media creators, what does it do to the revenues of the service providers? Does it increase their value per stream?

I asked Dan Kusnetzky, Program Vice President, System Software at IDC what he thought of the vanishing value per video stream debate. And here’s what he told me…

So Scott McNealy Says “No” to Java Going Open Source.

So Jon Paczkowski of GMSV is surprised that Scott McNealy of Sun said “No” to Java going open source. Didn’t surprise me. In my “In the DataCenter” commentary Making Up Isn’t Hard to Do months ago, I warned my audience not to presume:

“…But if Microsoft is on the run, why should Sun settle right before trial? It all comes down to money and open source. Sun, a proprietary unix vendor, has watched its dominance in the Unix market steadily sink under a
sustained attack by the freebie killer Unix clones. A cool $1.6B will sure help the bottom line of a company that also announced, almost as an afterthought, a 9% RIF and a “bigger than expected” net loss. They need cash – clearly, and Microsoft has buckets of cash.

But what does Microsoft get out of all this? Well, aside from this annoying lawsuit, they get something much more significant – a Unix vendor who needs Microsoft more than Microsoft needs them. Oh, and that Java licensing stuff that started all these suits – they get that settled as well, to their liking. All’s well that ends well, right?

The upshot – don’t expect Java to go open source, IBM. And don’t expect Sun to support Unix clones, either. They’ve crossed their Rubicon, and in running a hardware server business, cash is king.”

UC Berkeley Students Collateral Damage in Budget Cuts

After 44 years, the UC system has decided to give up and winnow out qualified students, bumping many to the overloaded community college system. These students, in turn, will bump out qualified students hoping to work themselves into the Cal State and UC system in Kind of a “Survivor” meets “Goodbye Mr. Chips” reality show – but with a real downside.

Berkeley Chancellor Robert Berndahl expressed the concern in April’s Cal Monthly magazine that “everything Berkeley has achieved over the past half century as a university could be lost within a half decade”. Is Clark Kerr’s vision finally vanquished?

What is the impact of these higher education budget cuts on the Silicon Valley high-tech industry? Will the next generation have the skills to compete in a world economy? Join me in my next installment of In the DataCenter as I explore The High Cost of Innovation.

In the DataCenter: A Tale of Two Opinions

Santa Cruz Operation, the company that purchased the rights to Unix from Novell and then launched a series of lawsuits against IBM and high profile users of Linux, has had a somewhat difficult time of it enforcing what they claim is their “rights”, enduring reactions ranging from denial of service attacks from hackers to legal wrangling over just what rights they bought from Novell in the first place.

So it’s no surprise that once again, they are tacking into the wind. But is SCO sailing into calmer legal waters, or is it simply a lull before the storm? Did the “Eldred” case championed by Dr. Lessig of Stanford Law School provide the key to a new approach? Please join me In the DataCenter as I examine SCO’s new direction in A Tale of Two Opinions. [Format: mp4/Unix or QT6+/Mac or Windows].

Welcome to “In the DataCenter” – Topical Internet TV Tech Commentary

Well, a miracle finally occurred – Sun and Microsoft announced today that they were going to kiss and tell. The long-running antitrust lawsuit and bad blood is now at an end. In fact, they are eager to spread their prosperous love!

All the world loves a lover, and no one should miss such a wonderful opportunity. So in the spirit of spreading more good news, I’d like to invite people to tune into a topical Internet TV in-depth technology commentary program we’ve been working on at TeleMuse Networks called In the DataCenter, where we will find out that Making Up isn’t Hard to Do.