Alethia University – ICIM 2013

This weekend I’m attending ICIM 2013 in Danshui, Taipei, Taiwan. Upon my arrival the hospitality was evident. The professor Tzong-Heng Chi showed me around, gave me a history lesson, and found me a old 1875 style veranda to park myself and drink lemonade. Too perfect. Alethia university has the feeling that all institutions of education should have. The historical architecture essentially balances your thoughts and rationality is nurtured. I will do my presentation later today. Thanks Chi! Perfect spot to relax before the conference.

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Hon Hai Accumulating Intelligent Auto Patents

Luxgen is a new Taiwanese independent auto brand seeking to grow and add market share in Taiwan and abroad. Luxgen has shown propensity towards selling intelligent automobiles in a global market. More broadly, in the US autonomous vehicles have been licensed for testing in two US states to date, and Google’s Sergey Brin has publically predicted that autonomous vehicles will be ready for market in 5 years. Luxgen is owned by parent company Hon Hai Precision Industry Ltd. Hon Hai has started to accumulate patents related to autonomous vehicles starting in 2010 and their transportation related patent awards and their details are below in Figure 2 and Table 4. Secondly, top litigated software UPC classes for 2012 include several classes related to transportation technology. These litigation trends indicate that technological innovation in the transportation industry is high-value at this time. Figure: Hon Hai Transportation Related Patent Grants by Award Year…

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USPC to CPC Statistical Concordance Table

The USPC to CPC statistical concordance table is available on the USPTO website:http://www.uspto.gov/web/patents/classification/index.htm The only problem is that it’s nearly impossible to download all the tables because they are all on separate pages, and unfortunately my request for a CSV file has been unanswered. Here is a web-scraping python script to download all the tables for all USPC and create a CSV file. The script is available here and requires the BeautifulSoup library: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/45852891/UPC-CPCconcordance1000.py The parsed CSV file is available here: https://dl.dropbox.com/u/45852891/uspc-cpc.csv The CSV includes the first 5 related CPC codes as columns and can be opened in excel or imported into a database. Cheers!

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    Click on the image below to see the full report:   Link to Annual Report of Software Patent Litigation for 2012: https://www.ripplesoftware.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/annual-report-data-1.jpg Link to PwC 2012 M&A Outlook: http://www.pwc.com/en_US/us/transaction-services/publications/assets/pwc-technology-mergers-acquisitions-q4-2011-outlook.pdf Link to PwC 2012 Patent Litigation Report: http://www.pwc.com/en_US/us/forensic-services/publications/assets/2012-patent-litigation-study.pdf Link to PwC 2012 China M&A Outlook: http://www.pwcblogs.be/transactions/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/2012-China-MA-Review-and-Outlook.pdf

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Technology cycle time is a measure of the pace of technological turnover by measuring the average age of patent citations. The following table shows the UPC subclasses with the fastest moving TCT for 2010. Only subclasses that have received at least 100 patent grants during 2010 are included. Results show communications IT, big data, vehicles navigation, computer conferencing constitute most of the classes.

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Auto Maker Patenting Since 2007

Which of the top automakers is leading the software patenting charge towards autonomous vehicles? This chart shows which automakers have been acquiring patents since 2007. Looks like Honda and GM are really collecting the most patents with Nissan in the number 3 position. Expectedly data processing for vehicle navigation is by far the run-away top software UPC for patenting by most auto makers.

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The first chart below shows the probability that a patent will become litigated for the whole USPTO (blue), commercial and business software IPC G06Q (red), and the total G06Q patent issued per year from 1990-2011. The chart tells the story pretty clearly. That is, software patents have a much higher possibility of litigation than average for the whole USPTO. Also, commercial software patenting is increasing significantly to over 3000 patents per year. In this data model probability is calculated by the number of litigated patents each year divided by a cumulative total of issued patents in each category starting in 1976. While patenting is increasing, litigation is increasing faster. The actual probabilities may be slightly higher than shown here considering that the cumulative totals are run from 1976 until the calculated year. The second chart showing the average age of litigated patents for the entire USPTO and G06Q show that…

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The uncertainty in the dragons den of software patents may be driving many countries away from competing for patents. This is perhaps bad news for the US and further evidence that software patents restrict innovation. Considering that only 12.9% of software patents hold up upon litigation ( The study was carried out by John R. Allison, Mark A. Lemley & Joshua Walker for McCombs Graduate School of Business, University of Texas at Austin). The data are actually quite staggering. The chart above shows that the US holds approximately 55% of all USPTO patents in existence. On the other hand, The US holds almost 70% of all software patents in the US and even more staggeringly 85% of all business and commercial software patents.

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Software patent policy keeps getting press for the amount of litigation rife. Many question whether the excessive litigation of software companies is hurting innovation and there are many sides to this story. Most agree the system is broken, but consensus lacks in how exactly to fix it. One example of how the system is broken involves Ceats Inc. They amassed many software patents regarding ticket selling software. However, last year a jury rejected the validity of their patents. The jury argued that prior art had already existed. Therefore there is a two-fold problem of A) The patent office ability to search for prior art or judge non-obviousness seems to be inadequate. B) If companies cannot rely on the validity of patents that have been issued, then ROE uncertainty is high and the possibility of getting sued by a patent troll would certainly deter large companies from entering into questionable markets….

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Does social media allow us to become more polarized?

Does social media allow us to become more polarized? It certainly allows us to socialize with the people we choose independent of where they are on the planet at any given time. I’m 33 years old and therefore I remember I was just a high school student when the Internet really became a viable tool for every day use in people’s homes and schools. At that time in a dormitory, apartment building, or neighborhood it was still common to make friends and socialize and get to know the people around your regardless of political differences that you have with them or even some social characteristics they have that may not match your own. These days it’s possible to avoid so many people that are around you every day because you can stay connected to other people so easily. I read research that shows people have a sort of maximum number…

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