Speaking at the ad:tech event in Sydney, Australia, Owen Rogers, senior partner at Palo Alto-based design firm IDEO, said the human element of the innovation process is too important to be ignored, and unfortunately, many executives do just that when deciding on a strategy:
“There are three elements to any problem – technical, feasible [business] and the human piece. Everybody typically forgets the human piece, or they devalue it, thinking the technical or business piece has to be overcome first and foremost.”
Companies are constantly seeking to create a culture of innovation, but how is it done?
In a piece for Forbes, Michelle Greenwald discusses this very topic, and says that importing external ideas is just as important as the brainstorming sessions that take place inside your company’s walls:
“Companies like P&G, Unilever and Lego communicate new product idea challenges externally on their websites to crowdsource solutions. Unilever has a page titled “Challenges and Wants” where the company lists challenges they have begun working on and projects they’d like to work with partners on, which they call wants […]Other firms, like toy companies, inform outside inventors who invent for specific industries, and send their in-house product designers on inventor sweeps to review outside inventor ideas several times a year.”
Laura Gaze, Director, IP Solutions: This is a great read to get a bird’s eye view to get an idea of what some companies are doing to capture new ideas. At times, the direction a company’s innovative efforts could benefit from the clarity of an outside inventor or even a consumer. By overseeing this type of crowdsourcing, combined with fostering a culture of innovation from within, a Chief Innovation Officer could stand to springboard their company into the future.
The Sarah E. Goode STEM Academy is paving the road towards new American innovators, and the world is taking notice.
The school, which was featured on the cover of TIME Magazine last week, launched a year and a half ago. There, the students are called “innovators,” and they receive a hardcore focus on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) skills. IBM — the academy’s partner and a key developer of the curriculum — promises graduates a $40,000-plus opportunity at the company upon graduation, which takes six years instead of the traditional four; the extra two years means they walk away with an associate’s degree on top of their high school diploma.
The school bears the name of Goode, who, in 1885, was the first African American woman ever granted a patent.
Laura Gaze, Director, IP Solutions: This model is incredible, and certainly commendable. For years, we’ve heard that America is falling behind developing nations in science and math performance and homegrown innovation, and a corporate partner like IBM trying to tackle the problem head on is exactly the kind of action that is needed. This model has the potential to be very powerful. As the school matures and the first graduates enter IBM, it will be interesting to see how they perform and, if successful, whether this could ultimately signal a shift in the entire educational structure of our nation.
SAE International is the ultimate knowledge source for mobility engineering — a global association that unites more than 138,000 engineers and related technical experts in the aerospace, automotive and commercial vehicle industries. SAE International’s core competencies are life-long learning and voluntary consensus standards development, resulting in a comprehensive collection of over 10,000 active standards covering hundreds of topics related to design, energy, materials, management, quality, safety, testing and performance. Today, a new generation of engineers will have access to those standards via the Techstreet Subscriptions web-based enterprise platform – the newest, most innovative and fastest growing platform for standards managment. You can browse the SAE catalog of active and historical standards on the Techstreet website, http://www.techstreet.com/publishers/sae.
Bob Stembridge, Customer Relations Manager, IP Solutions: Using proprietary patent data from the Thomson Reuters Derwent World Patents Index (DWPI), analysts at Thomson Reuters took a look at the latest, patent technology around skiing – just in time for the kick off of the 2014 Winter Olympics.
Starting at One O’clock going clockwise, the inventions are described below.
- Safety is a paramount concern in all sports including those of the Winter Olympics, and a key component of that safety is delivered through helmet design. One example of the latest innovation in this area is described in US20120174294A1 to Bell Sports Inc for a helmet intended for snowboarding and skiing as well as cycling, skateboarding, motorcycling, race car driving and rock climbing. It has inner and outer protective layers, cheek pads, release strap and a pad back plate coupled to protective layer and including magnets to allow easy removal of the helmet during emergency situation.
- There’s not much chance to check where you’re headed when you’re hurtling down the slope at speed, so the heads-up display system for use on goggles by e.g. skiers, described in US20130222213A1 to Recon Instruments Inc could be just what you need. The system provides a head-mounted information system using an inertial navigation system (INS) sensor and a global positioning system (GPS) receiver to provide measurement of position and altitude. The system allows a display driver to maintain the display in an off state or power saving state unless a user is looking at the display.
- Perhaps you need to phone a friend from the piste – in which case, wouldn’t it be nice not to have to take off those gloves exposing your toasty hands to the cold. The invention claimed in EP2620842A1 to Scosche Ind Inc can help. It provides for a moisture resistant glove e.g. snow glove for operating capacitive touch sensitive devices e.g. cell phones. It works like this: the conductive elements are extended through the moisture penetration resistant layer to permit electrical conduction from user’s hand to the touch screen device, so that the transmission of moisture between the interior and exterior portions of the gloves can be prevented efficiently.
- Novice skiers can now keep and use the same set of skis as they learn and their proficiency increases. US20100171288A1 to Steep N Deep LLC provides for width adjustable skis to allow the user to adjust the width of the ski depending upon skiing style, snow conditions, experience of the skier and so on.
- Back to safety, the invention claimed in DE102011100933A1 to Moticon GmbH is an electronic ski binding device with improved user safety. The device has a trip unit which is triggered based on a signal sent by electronic device which is provided with acceleration sensor and turning rate sensor which releases the skis on detection of abnormal conditions.
- How about a ski boot that is comfortable and effective in both walking and skiing modes? US20130097892A1 to Scott Sports SA describes just such a boot with a guide unit (44) which is connected to support unit (40), to receive and guide the mobile end of a rod. The use of the mobile guide in relation to the support facilitates movement of the leg portion without creating any problem while in operation condition thus assuring easy skiing or walking as required by conditions.
- Perhaps you’ve misjudged the time and it’s starting to get dark? US20120080064A1 to 3D Relief Inc can help. The invention describes an illuminated ski pole which has a set of light sources set longitudinally around the shaft together with a power source in the handle to fire up the illumination.
- Finally, an end to those painful and damaging encounters with your ski edges. WO2012077236A1 to Goldwin Inc describes a ski pant which has an edge guard provided on inner thigh side of bottom portion configured as impact-absorbing structure. Since the edge guard is configured as the impact-absorbing structure made of elastic or viscoelastic shock absorbent, the edge guard does not impede user’s movement when the user is gliding using skis. The damage of bottom portion of ski pant due to the impact of the edge of ski board, is prevented by the use of edge guard.
Descriptions of the inventions listed here were summarized from the corresponding DWPI records using the DWPI value-added titles and novelty, use and advantage sections of the DWPI abstracts.
Techstreet has announced the launch of the newest version of its enterprise standards management platform: Techstreet Subscriptions.
Techstreet Subscriptions provides customers with new collaboration capabilities, including note taking and the ability to view exact equivalents, which offers the certainty they are using the correct standard. Equivalents flags notify subscribers when identical versions of the document are available, and a single click produces a complete list of these documents from multiple publishers, showing which international standards have been adopted by national standards bodies.
Techstreet’s comprehensive offerings include more than 500,000 codes, standards and technical books, aggregated from more than 350 of the world’s leading authorities, and made available through Techstreet’s online store.
For more information on Techstreet, visit www.techstreet.com.
IP strategy, Innovation
Today, we released our list of the Top 100 most innovative organizations for 2013. For the third consecutive year, the companies on the list outperformed the S&P 500 by 4 percent in annual stock price growth, and 2 percent in market cap weighted revenue growth. Overall, the Top 100 generated $4.5 trillion in revenue, spent $223 billion on R&D, added more than 266,000 jobs and outperformed the S&P 500 by 8.8 percent in R&D spending.
To view the full list, click here
The Thomson Reuters 2013 Top 100 Global Innovator methodology is based on four principle criteria: overall patent volume, patent grant success rate, global reach of the portfolio and patent influence as evidenced by citations. The peer-reviewed methodology was executed using Thomson Reuters Derwent World Patents Index® (DWPI), Derwent Patents Citations Index™, Quadrilateral Patent Index™, and Thomson Innovation®, its IP and intelligence collaboration platform. Comparative financial analysis was done using the Thomson Reuters Advanced Analytics for Deal-Making platform.
Some of the report’s key findings include:
- R&D Spending: The Top 100 Global Innovators spent U.S. $223.2 billion on R&D in 2012, outspending the S&P 500 by over 8.8 percent on R&D last year. Comparatively, the U.S. spends $408.6 billion on R&D, Japan spends $141 billion, France spends $49.9 billion and the U.K. spends $39.5 billion. Of this, they respectively dedicate the following to R&D manufacturing: 70 percent, 87 percent, 84 percent and 73 percent.[i]
- Smartphone Patent Wars Drive New Innovation: The intense competition in the smartphone space is on clear display in this year’s Top 100 Global Innovators list, with the major players in the smartphone patent wars present: Apple, Microsoft, Samsung, Google and BlackBerry. This is the first year BlackBerry made the Top 100 Innovators list, driven by a 38 percent surge in patent filings between 2010 and 2011, and 17 percent growth in patent filings between 2011 and 2012. The BlackBerry patent portfolio will be a key factor in BlackBerry’s pursuit of “strategic alternatives”.
- Government Incentives Drive Private Sector Innovation: The study results show a direct correlation between a government’s commitment to innovation and its R&D tax policies to its ability to attract and retain innovative organizations. This is evidenced notably in France, which has the most companies on the Top 100 list among all European countries, while the UK, which has a similar sized economy, has none (for the second year in a row). This is attributable in large part to R&D tax credits and other government stimulus for innovation. Likewise, the U.S. and Japan, which have the strongest representation on the list, have a long history of government stimulus of innovation.
- Still No China: Mainland China is once again notably absent from this year’s list of Top 100 Global Innovators. Despite the fact that China leads the world in patent volume, the majority of patents filed in the country are only filed domestically, which limits the region’s global influence in the Top 100 Global Innovators study.
To learn more about the Top 100 Innovators, visit top100innovators.com
Innovation, Thomson Reuters
We recently announced that Techstreet, part of the Intellectual Property (IP) & Science business of Thomson Reuters, has signed new agreements to distribute standards and guidelines from the Petroleum Equipment Institute (PEI), American Nuclear Society (ANS), National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors (NBBI), Aluminum Association and FM Approvals.
These agreements expand an already extensive collection from the world’s leading standards authorities – used by engineers, librarians and technical professionals worldwide – in business, industry, government and academia. Techstreet’s web-based tools and services speed the discovery and management of standards for building better, safer products, getting to market faster and improving the quality and interoperability of goods and services in our global society.
For more information on Techstreet, visit www.techstreet.com.
According to the Financial Times, Microsoft has acquired some of Nokia’s mobile phone business for €3.79 billion, and agreed to license roughly 30,000 of its technology patents for €1.65 billion.
Breaking out the patent licenses is unusual, according to Richard Waters, but he explains that, in advance of the deal, most analysts had estimated that the patents were worth about $5bn. The prospect of additional big licensing deals to match the Microsoft payment suggested the figure may have been an understatement.
Laura Gaze, Director, IP Solutions: Nokia is a good example of a company that has managed their IP well despite the challenges they were facing in the marketplace. Last year, we saw Eastman Kodak declare bankruptcy and auction their patent portfolio. But by amassing very valuable holdings in the communications industry and selling licenses to hardware makers, Nokia has been able to keep their options open while exploring strategic alternatives for the future of their business.
This sale that unbundles patent licenses is unique, but is a product of the direction the smartphone patent wars have taken the industry, where protection against litigation is of paramount importance. It will be interesting to see if similar deals come to fruition as the competition intensifies.
In today’s highly competitive environment, maximizing the value of your intellectual property assets is of paramount importance. That’s why we’ve released an all-new generation of Thomson IP Manager, which provides organizations with unprecedented portfolio management support including local, hosted and preconfigured Editions.
The new generation of Thomson IP Manager is built with the latest web technologies and features a bold, intuitive and efficient interface, to help brand managers reach new levels of collaboration, optimize decisions, and protect these critical assets. With this tool, organizations are able to consolidate information on patents, trademarks, designs, disclosures, agreements and other business-critical records; accelerate communication; and determine key IP for commercialization or out-licensing.
Following are some of the features of the new Thomson IP Manager:
- Discover New Revenue Streams and Maximize your ROI: Evaluate all aspects of your IP portfolio, tie your products to your IP, identify IP rights ripe for out-licensing, and make build vs. buy decisions in conjunction with R&D.
- Get to Market Faster: Ensure early involvement of essential parties in the R&D and product management processes, get input from key stakeholders and move your costly innovations to market as quickly as possible.
- Optimize your IP Strategy: Verify that your IP assets are aligned with your IP strategy, and your IP strategy is aligned with the overall business strategy.
Thomson IP Manager is available in three Editions to meet customers’ specific implementation and support requirements: Enterprise, Cloud, and Jumpstart.
To learn more about the new generation of Thomson IP Manager, visit: https://thomsonipmanagement.com/