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Lecture 16

Lecture Sixteen: Rise of Techno-Science Based Industries

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Department
Natural Science
Course
NATS 1775
Professor
Vera Pavri
Semester
Fall

Description
Lecture Sixteen: Rise of Techno-Science Based Industries November 15, 2011 Techno-Science Industries - Industries which were able to increasingly control over scientific operations - Used scientific knowledge and research application for the production of new goods Patents One of the most important tools to understand when discussing the idea of managing and controlling technology. Patents existed before techno-science industries, but in the second industrial revolution, the ways in which patents were used were new. Definition: an official document that allows an individual or individuals to have the sole right to make, use or sell a specified invention for a specific period of time. - Prevents any other individual from making, using or selling the same product - All patents have an expiration date Incentive Based - A patent was given to an inventor as an incentive to invent - This is because if there are no rights protecting others from using that information or invention, a person may be more reluctant to share their invention for fear of being copied Patent-Status - An invention must be unique - Must go through the patent office in order to be granted a patent Advantages of Patents Incentive-Based - This gives people the incentive to create new things Security - Gives an inventor a sense of safety and security for a given period of time - When a person had a patent, banks and other financial institutions are more likely to give money to them for further innovations “A Patent Begets More Patents” -When a person has a patent, they gain a small bit of fame and recognition -When they build this reputation, they are more likely to get patents for new inventions in the future Disadvantages of Patents Discourages Competition -When there are limits on who can create and produce certain products, there is very little competition because it is against the law -This limits consumer choice -Consumers may have to pay very high prices for that good because there are no substitutes -Costly legal disputes Consumer Good vs. Producer Good -Often, those with patents are looking to make money -Sometimes the desire to make money exceeds the desire to do good for the whole of society -Example: pharmaceutical companies create life saving drugs at high costs. Those who cannot afford these drugs must suffer. There are no substitutes and therefore the good of the company is being served, but not the good of the rest of society necessarily. Opportunity Costs -There will always be fights about patents and who has the rights to what -This is costly, and very time consuming -If people are spending more time and money in the courtroom, they are not spending it in the research lab -Precious research and development time and money is being squandered. Electrical Industries in the United States Patents in the Lighting Industry Arc Lighting -Electric arc formed by leaping gap between two electrodes -In the United States, this technology was not patentable -It was not deemed unique enough to do so -This caused much competition Thompson-Houston Electric -Began to patent parts of the arc lighting system because they could not patent the entire system -There were certain parts which were unique enough to be patented -This caused them to be able to create a superior arc lighting system, and therefore eliminate a lot of their competition -Gained a lot of control over the industry Buy-Outs and Mergers In a buyout, a company purchases another company to form a larger version of their orginial company -In this scenario, the company gains the rights to the bought-out company In a merger, two companies form a new, larger
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