Patent Fights Stir Up Trouble; Market Turmoil May Delay IPOs

Dice News RoundupROUNDUP:

Patent Spats Increase: Is it true that a patent is simply a license to sue? That’s the often-heard complaint these days as the mobile computing boom becomes a courthouse war, with big tech companies engaged in disputes over patents for the software that makes smartphones and tablets popular. Google is after Apple, Microsoft and Oracle, accusing them of using patents as weapons in a concerted effort to stifle the growth of the Android OS. Meanwhile, Nokia is fighting Apple, Apple is fighting Samsung and Oracle is going after Google. Meanwhile, outspoken Internet billionaire Mark Cuban has some very strong opinions about why patent laws must be changed.  

Wall Street Chill May Hurt IPOs: As the stock market convulses, some small companies that have been planning IPOs are putting on the brakes. Larger IPOs scheduled for later in the year could also be in jeopardy. Volatility is the enemy of the IPO market, and even eagerly anticipated Internet IPOs, most notably Groupon’s, may have to be delayed. Sales of government-owned shares in large companies such as AIG and GM also may not happen on their original schedule.

Hacking Away at the “Bamboo Ceiling”: Stanford business professor Jeffrey Pfeffer is helping Asian and Asian-American vice presidents understand how a combination of cultural upbringing and organizational bias may be slowing their careers. The six-day program focuses on things like a reluctance by Asians to be seen as too aggressive. Studies have often showed that Asians on fast executive career tracks are tripped up by instinctive behaviors that are out of sync with typical American workplaces.

GE Brings Some Outsourced Tech Jobs Home: General Electric CEO Jeffrey Immelt says the company will add more than 15,000 jobs in three years, including 1,100 IT jobs outside of Detroit. So far, the company has hired about 660 people there, who will replace non-GE employees who worked as contractors. “That strategy may have had its time, but there was a lot of downside. We lost a lot of the technical capabilities that we have to own,” Charlene Begley, chief information technology officer, said. Bloomberg

Nokia Will Stop Selling Symbian and Low-End Phones in North America: It would have been unimaginable even five years ago, but Nokia will stop selling low-end phones and Symbian-based smartphones in the U.S. and Canada, choosing instead to focus on its new alliance with Microsoft and Windows Phone. “When we launch Windows Phones we will essentially be out of the Symbian business, the S40 business, etc.,” Nokia President Chris Weber said. He added that the first Windows Phones that will ship are being created by Nokia’s San Diego research team. AllThingsD

Siemens Hires Its Own Interns: Siemens USA is offering positions to 75 of its 170 interns this fall, putting 79 percent of them into engineering jobs, making it an extremely successful internship program. In fact, Siemens starts looking at talent at the high school level, investing in science, technology, engineering and math initiatives and getting its products into schools to raise brand and company awareness. Siemens has 62,000 U.S. employees and more than 3,000 open positions, half of them in engineering. Business Management Daily

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