Emerging Technologies

100 Wireless Years

E-Commerce Marketing

Business at the Speed of Knowledge

Corrections or additions?

These articles by Melinda Sherwood and Barbara Fox were published

in U.S. 1 Newspaper on September 22, 1999. All rights reserved.

Networking Time: AT&T Ventures

If your company has anything to do with

telecommunications

or the Internet, you probably hope for attention from any of the mega

companies, such as Microsoft or AT&T. R. Bradford Burnham,

general

partner of AT&T Ventures, will keynote the Venture Association of

New Jersey’s second annual business incubator and high tech showcase

on Friday, September 24, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Westin in Morristown.

Cost: $60. Exhibits only, $15. Call 973-631-5680.

Burnham is an alumnus of Wesleyan University, and in his 19-year

career

has been director of business development for AT&T Computer Systems

and founder and CEO of Echo Logic, which provides byte-level software

translation between processors.

The AT&T venture capital partnership, founded seven years ago,

provides

from $1 million to $5 million to companies in these markets: wireless

communications, Internet, value added networking services, content,

and local service. Its "value-added" service is to help its

portfolio companies find potential business partners within AT&T or

leverage any other aspect of AT&T.

Paytrust (www.paytrust.com), the online billpayment company at Emmons

Drive, is among the 60 companies in AT&T Ventures’ portfolio. Others

include City Search (Ticketmaster Online-City Search), E-Stamp

Corporation

(web-based postage solutions), Physicians Online (the largest online

community of medical professionals), Verisign Inc. (the leading

digital

ID certificate authority), and Netscape.

"We expect to exit the investment within five to seven years,

and we take an active role with our portfolio companies," says

the press release (http://www.attventures.com). "We work with

many entrepreneurs to help shape a business plan, but ultimately a

written plan is essential to our evaluation of investment

opportunities."

Top Of Page
Emerging Technologies

On Parade

Have a high-tech product but not enough funds to launch

it into the market? Let the U.S. Department of Defense write you a

check under the Small Business Innovative Research Program. That’s

how Princeton Satellite System’s president Michael Paluszek

was able to develop the company’s "object agent," a software

development system that could be used in two U.S. Air Force

satellites,

and meanwhile be used to keep electricity flowing to our homes.

"The

general goal is to create a militarily significant but commercially

viable product," says Paluszek, whose firm is based at 33

Witherspoon

Street. "The advantage of the SBIR is that you retain the

intellectual

rights so you can resell the product."

This is just one example of the innovative technologies featured at

this year’s Emerging Technology Showcase, hosted by the New Jersey

Technology Council on Monday, September 27, at 4 p.m. at the Princeton

Plasma Physics Lab. The showcase is a perfect opportunity to network,

show off, and get ideas on getting to market. Other exhibitors: Aptech

Worldwide, Brookhouse Data Solutions, CM Software, Commence

Corporation,

Medatech International, Mobiliti Inc., Navigator Technologies, Omnie

Labs, Paramax Productions, Stone, Timber & River, Themis Inc.,

Universal

Personalizing Technology, Krell Technologies, NJIT Defense Procurement

Center, and Notifact.

Companies will be introduced by Mario Casabono, president of

Electro-Radiation Inc., Brendan Dougher of

PriceWaterhouseCoopers,

and Ron Guida of Universal Personalizing Technology. Free tours

of the lab begin at 3 p.m. Call 856-787-9700. Cost: $70.

Other business showcases in September:

Wednesday, September 22, the New Jersey Technology

Council’s

third annual New Jersey Growth Company Showcase at the Sheraton

Meadowlands.

CEOs and CFOs of some of the fastest growing firms, including CommTech

Corporation, Computer Horizons, Dendrite, the Liposome Co., and

Sensar,

will give presentations and lead discussions. The showcase starts

at 8 a.m. Cost: $125. Call 856-787-9700.

Friday, September 24, the Venture Association of New

Jersey’s

second annual Business Incubator and High-Tech Showcase at the Westin,

in Morristown. The event starts at 9 a.m. Cost: $60. Call

973-631-5680.

(Bradford Burnham, general partner of AT&T Ventures, is the keynote

— see story above.)

Top Of Page
100 Wireless Years

Rub shoulders with the greats in wireless communications

at the 100th anniversary of the first radio transmission by Guglielmo

Marconi. The Rutgers Wireless Information Networks Laboratory (WINLAB)

will celebrate the anniversary on Thursday, September 30, at the

Oyster

Point Hotel in Red Bank and the Twin Lights Historic Site in

Highlands.

Cost: $225 including two meals and a reception. Call Melissa

Gelfman

at 732-445-0283 or E-mail gelfman@winlab.rutgers.edu.

Marconi went to Twin Lights to do live reporting of the America’s

Cup races. The message was supposed to be passed from a ship at sea

to Twin Lights and be relayed by telephone to the New York Herald.

First, however, he was told to report on the return of Admiral Dewey’s

victorious fleet to New York from the Spanish American War. And so

on September 30, 1899, the telegraphy messages reporting on the fleet

were the first demonstrations of practical wireless telegraphy.

WINLAB is also celebrating its own 10th anniversary, says interim

director Roy Yates. As a National Science Foundation

Industry/University

Cooperative Research Center, it is a resource for the creation and

evaluation of technology and for disseminating information.

Among the speakers will be Fumiyuki Adachi of Nippon Telephone

and Telegraph NTT-DoCoMo, head of the leading research group outside

the United States in the development of third-generation cellular

phones. Also Donald Cox of Stanford, a wireless cellular

researcher

who holds the Alexander Graham Bell Medal and the Guglielmo Marconi

Prize; Richard Frenkiel, known as the father of the cellular

phone system; Larry Greenstein, of the Newman Springs ATT&T

Labs Research, who works with measuring and modeling cellular radio

communication channels; Robert Lucky of Telecordia Technologies

and author of a column in the IEEE Spectrum magazine; and Andrew

Viterbi, a founder of Quallcomm Inc., with innovative digital

wireless

communications products based on Code Division Multiple Access

technology.

Following these speeches there will be a reenactment and reception

at Twin Lights.

Top Of Page
E-Commerce Marketing

Would you purchase a bag of potato chips over the Web?

That’s about as incongruous as buying Rogaine from a vending machine.

It’s no surprise, then, that marketing gurus like Daryl

Brewster,

president of the Planter Specialty Company at Nabisco, are cautious

about espousing the Internet as a major marketing vehicle. "For

some of businesses it’s very appropriate to use the Internet,"

he says. "Powerful ideas in the right medium work well. They still

work well on radio, and everybody thought that would go away. When

we give a recipe, we’ll use a magazine because it’s hard to clip them

out of TV."

Radio, television, Internet, direct mail — all of these mediums

are equally important for reaching customers, says Brewster, one of

the panelists at the American Marketing Association’s meeting

"Fish

Where the Fish Are: Opportunities and Trends Within Direct to Consumer

Marketing," on Monday, September 27, at 6 p.m. at the Somerset

Hills Hotel in Warren. Joining him on the panel is Phil Benson

of the Roche Group Inc., who discusses marketing from the standpoint

of pharmaceutical companies. Call 908-497-2339. Cost: $40.

Prior to joining Nabisco, Brewster held various roles at the Campbell

Soup company. He holds a BA in economics from the University of

Virginia,

Class of 1979, and an MBA from University of North Carolina, Chapel

Hill.

Where to spend that marketing dollar, says Brewster, is the challenge

that companies face today. "Some people say put a $1 into 20

different

things," he says "but sometimes it’s better to pick one and

put $20 into that." Sinking the mother lode into Internet

marketing

would be foolhardy, he says. "I think there’s a lot of different

things to think through — there’s clearly been a fragmentation

of media alternatives, and that fragmentation has allowed you to be

much more targeted. There’s an awful lot of work going on in the

industry.

We’ve established our own E-business group, and I think this is the

new frontier."

Television is still the frontier medium for many pharmaceutical

companies,

says Phil Benson, manager of market intelligence for Roche Group Inc.

"Before it was prominently print, but now, with FDA deregulation,

you’re seeing more in broadcast," he says. For years,

pharmaceutical

companies tried to get the medical community to buy into drugs, but

with new FDA regulations, they can now get the general public to put

pressure on doctors to prescribe. In most cases, it will be for the

new generation of lifestyle drugs — drugs that deal with weight

loss, allergies, acne, depression, or impotence, for example.

Consumers holds this kind of product information dear to their hearts,

says Benson. "Managed care is forcing physicians to spend less

and less time with their patients, so you’re going to see consumers

play more of an active role in their health decisions," he says.

"They say that the average person takes more time picking out

a pair of shoes than they do their doctor." When a new drug to

treat arthritis or osteoporosis comes to the market, however,

consumers

will notice. "You have an aging population that needs products

geared towards an aging population. It’s a great opportunity for a

pharmaceutical company."

Benson received a B.S. from Ferris State University, Class of 1988,

and spent several years at Upjohn & Pharmacia, where he worked on

the company’s Rogaine product, among the first lifestyle drugs to

be advertised on TV. The freedom to advertise on television, however,

is a double-edged sword. "If you’re not a big share of the

market,"

he says, "you have to think: how much am I going to benefit my

competition? If we drive people into the office and the doctors don’t

write us a prescription, we’ve wasted our money." That happened

to Bristol-Myers Squibb when it ran ads on Pravachol, a product that

was apparently the third largest in the market. In the end revenues

went to a competing product by Warner Lambert. A company can sway

the average Joe, but ultimately, it’s the doctor who has to be

impressed.

"The consumer and professional promotion have to work

together,"

says Benson.

Another conundrum for the industry is the "fair balance" act,

which makes it necessary for companies to list all the nasty side

effects associated with a drug that is advertised by brand name.

Companies

are better off in some cases, says Benson, urging people to see their

doctor about a condition, not a product. "If the fair balance

is negative, sexual dysfunction for example, and I’m the only person

in that market, I would concentrate my effort on converting the sale

at the doctor’s office," he says.

Pharmaceutical companies are slave to two masters — the consumers

and the doctors, two very different markets. "The main reasons

consumers want to lose weight is for appearance," says Benson.

"The main reason doctor’s want to lose weight is health, so

there’s

a disconnect." Nonetheless, Benson anticipates drug commercials

will take up more and more air time. "It’s ultimately the

physician’s

decision to write a prescription," he says, "we’re just trying

to educate the consumer."

Top Of Page
Business at the Speed of Knowledge

Imagine life-saving drugs to fight HIV brought to market

in half the time. Imagine all open-heart surgeries conducted with

a simple, non-invasive laser in five years rather than 10.

These are just two of the possible outcomes of a patent-pending

process

to speed-up the rate of discovery and innovation in medicine, science,

and business, says Ed Swanstrom, president of Extreme Innovation

Inc. "It’s a patent-pending technique by which you turn innovation

on itself — you innovate innovation," says Swanstrom, who

explains the process on Thursday, September 30, at 8 a.m. in the

Communications

Building at Mercer County College. Cost: $45. Call 609-890-9624.

At the heart of the process, Swanstrom explains, is "knowledge

management," a rapidly growing trend in management that sounds

cryptic to outsiders: "Have you ever seen Escher — the hand

drawing the hand — that’s what we’re doing here," Swanstrom

explains, "letting things be self-innovating,

self-correcting."

At the grassroots level, knowledge management is really about

organizing

people and technology in a way that maximizes information.

"There’s

a sea of information — how do you chose what’s valuable to

you?,"

asks Swanstrom. "If you have 100 JAVA books to chose from, which

one do you chose?"

Technology might be Bill Gates’ answer to this dilemma, but in the

cult of knowledge management, the human network is far more powerful

than the electronic network. "There’s no problem with technology,

but it is just a bunch of tools," says Swanstrom. "Even if

you have the greatest Lotus Notes system in the world, it doesn’t

mean people are going to use it. But if you get the social network

together, people will store the information because someone else needs

it. Trust is the key."

Swanstrom has been trying to understand the process of learning and

gaining knowledge since he was eight, when he first stumbled upon

the book of Solomon. "It was about wisdom and I wanted to figure

out what that was," he says. He earned a BA in philosophy from

Park College in Missouri, Class of 1978, and then traveled to foreign

countries in search of "wise men," only to return to the

States,

Ronald Reagan, and the commercialization of space in the 1980s.

Swanstrom

raised $33 million to modify the space lab on the shuttle but plans

quickly dissolved following the Challenger tragedy.

Now Swanstrom is president of the Knowledge Management Consortium

International, a world-wide organization with over 17,000 members,

and he owns World Intellectual Capital Exchange and Extreme Innovation

Inc., the company that owns the patented process for innovation. He

lives with his wife in Washington, D.C.

A rough guide to do-it-yourself knowledge management, says Swanstrom,

begins with a black-box analysis. Take a good hard look at your most

valued information sources: people. "The social network is the

valuable asset," says Swanstrom. "If I map that out in your

organization I’ll know more about where you’re getting your knowledge

from than what technology can tell me." Pollinators, people who

can travel between groups and introduce information, spawn ideas,

or make important introductions, are also good tools. Then comes

change:

"You go after the lever points," says Swanstrom, "the

biggest bang for the bucks area."


Previous Story Next Story


Corrections or additions?


This page is published by PrincetonInfo.com

— the web site for U.S. 1 Newspaper in Princeton, New Jersey.

Facebook Comments