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Something interesting has been happening at the Cadence ChipEstimate.com site. Go there and you'll find IP Insider, a new blog written by longtime electronics industry editor John Blyler (right). This bi-weekly blog offers provocative insights into the technical, legal and business issues behind semiconductor IP, as well as implications for high-tech intellectual property in general.
In late July and early August, for instance, posts discussed the cost of IP theft, pondered whether a "patent bubble" is increasing the lawyer-to-engineer ratio, considered the usefulness of IP scorecards, commented on Qualcomm's acquisition of gesture recognition IP, and noted Carl Icahn's awareness of IP issues in connection with the Google purchase of Motorola Mobility (in which Icahn invested heavily).
To get the best view of the blog, however, I suggest reading Blyler's July 15 post, "Lack of Coverage Hides Fascinating IP Stories." Here, he laments the lack of coverage in mainstream technical media, and comments that "many users may think that semiconductor IP is a boringly mature topic, but that view is far from reality as IP moves into new and expanding markets."
What new markets? Blyler listed some of the topics covered in his previous blog posts, including IP subsystems, robotic IP, RF MEMs, sensors, chip packaging IP, and FPGA IP. Also on this list is manufacturing and process IP, which is not semiconductor IP but represents a new area that is closely related. Blyler, an engineering physicist by background, also mentioned some interesting future possibilities - including the merging of silicon and carbon-based IP, hardware/software "co-IP" methodologies, and "intention-based quantum entanglement IP."
"Still think IP is boring?" he concludes. "As familiar and mature as the IP market may seem, significant changes are happening right now."
There's a lot more at the ChipEstimate.com site. In addition to the extensive semiconductor IP catalog for which ChipEstimate.com is best known, you'll find EDA news briefs, an extensive video library, and an archive of the bi-weekly ChipEstimate.com newsletter and its "Tech Talk" columns. If you haven't been there for a while, and you have anything to do with semiconductor IP whatsoever, it's worth a look.