Bonum Certa Men Certa

Intel's Co-Founder Spills the Beans on the Great Patent Lie

Summary: Intel's Andy Grove compares patents to toxic loans

Setting aside Intel's many market-bound crimes for a moment, here we have another abusive monopolist saying what he really thinks about intellectual monopolies:

Andy Grove: Patents Are Like Mortgage Backed Securities

It's an interesting comparison and one that does seem apt the more you think about it. In separating out the "security" from the underlying asset, we tend to distort things. It was that distortion that resulted in the financial crisis, as it enabled those who wanted to sell risky things to obscure the actual risks and pretend that their securities were safer than they were.


Grove Says Patent System May Have Same Flaws as Derivatives

Andy Grove, who oversaw Intel Corp.’s emergence as the world’s largest chip company, says the U.S. patent system suffers from the same kind of flaws that brought about the global financial crisis.

Patents have evolved to a point where they often aren’t developed into products, and instead are instruments traded by speculators looking for the highest possible profit, Grove said May 2 at an event in Mountain View, California. Similar to financial derivatives, the link between patents and the products they protect is getting more tenuous, he said.


Intel's Grove: Something foul in Silicon Valley

Speaking to a diverse Silicon Valley audience that included Gordon Moore (founder of both Fairchild Semiconductor and Intel); Ted Hoff (co-inventor of the microprocessor); Carver Mead (VLSI concept); Intel CEO Paul Otellini; and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, Grove said the patent system is slouching toward the model that precipitated the financial crisis in the U.S.


Isn't it sad that while Intel's origins insist that patents are toxic, Intel is also accused (in China for example) of being an abusive monopoly which is endlessly using its patents to terrorise competitors? It's sincere hypocrisy.

“If people had understood how patents would be granted when most of today’s ideas were invented, and had taken out patents, the industry would be at a complete standstill today."

--Bill Gates (when Microsoft was smaller)



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