Results 1 to 24 of 24

Thread: Adventures of Mr. X in the Marketing World

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759

    Adventures of Mr. X in the Marketing World

    Hi All,

    Imagine that Mr. X should someday discover a method of tapping into the zero-point-energy (Please do not discuss feasibility in this thread). This enables Mr. X to design and fabricate machines that convert the tapped into energy, into a limitless source of electricity.

    How would you advise Mr.X to proceed to Monetize his discovery?

    *- Should he patent his discovery and wait for the proceeds?

    *- Should he solicit private investments and market the discovery

    *- Should he approach established energy Organizations such as power grids?

    *- Should he keep the discovery a secret and fabricate devises in secret and sell the resulting electricity half price? Starting with limited clients in small geographic zones and increase it's market share over time?

    *- Other

    Please feel free to elaborate.

    I would choose option 4 myself.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    13,886
    You might try looking up Theodore Sturgeon's short story "Brownshoes" for one possibility.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,861
    Mr. X should seek fame first. Fortune will follow. He should make his discovery public and "open source". Then (assuming it works) he can make an excellent living as a consultant, media pundit etc. If Mr. X is not a "one shot wonder", he will easily get financing to make other inventions.

    Mr. X has a worse problem than most inventors. He is not only in competition with legitimate technology but also with all the crackpots who claim to have done the same thing as Mr. X.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759
    Quote Originally Posted by mike alexander View Post
    You might try looking up Theodore Sturgeon's short story "Brownshoes" for one possibility.
    Very interesting read indeed.
    Thank you.

    ETA: Hopefully corrected the link to work on any computer.
    ETA-II: Nah, somehow my iPhone ends up on pp. 207-211 rather than 211.
    Last edited by a1call; 2010-Oct-07 at 06:36 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759
    Quote Originally Posted by tashirosgt View Post
    Mr. X should seek fame first. Fortune will follow. He should make his discovery public and "open source". Then (assuming it works) he can make an excellent living as a consultant, media pundit etc. If Mr. X is not a "one shot wonder", he will easily get financing to make other inventions.
    I wonder if that's the strategy Mr. Perelman is aiming for. Though I have heard he is hard to get in touch with (or even be seen).

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    a long way away
    Posts
    10,720
    All of the above.

    He needs to patent the invention to prevent[*] someone else simply doing the same thing.
    He needs to market the invention in order to get sufficient interest from potential customers who are...
    ... the energy companies he should be licensing the technology to
    He needs to build a prototype/demonstration system to prove that it works. The process needs to be kept absolutely secret until he has a contract with one or more pwer companies.

    I don't think he should try and go it alone because there will be all sorts of infrastructure and regulatory hurdles.


    * for suitable values of "prevent"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post

    I don't think he should try and go it alone because there will be all sorts of infrastructure and regulatory hurdles.


    * for suitable values of "prevent"
    That's a very good point. I hadn't thought of that. I wonder who owns the power grid infrastructure and to what extent. Do municipalities own their grids? Do Condos own their internal wiring?
    An interesting law where I live in Quebec, Canada, is that you can not put a turbine on any rivers even if you own the land that the river runs through. By Law only Hydro-Quebec can do that. There must be tons of other regulations protecting their interests.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    location
    Posts
    12,410
    The answer depends on the nature of the energy and how likely it is to be reproduced or reverse engineered.

    In Heinlein's Friday, the inventor of a ZPM like module called a "Shipstone" claims that no one can reverse engineer the shipstone without destroying it and any evidence of how it works. Thus, his wife tells him not to bother with patents, which would only give away the design and tells him to just manufacture them and sell them on his own. The events of the book revolve around a disagreement among the board of directors, but the secret technology remains secret, and thus so does the war between them.
    Et tu BAUT? Quantum mutatus ab illo.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    996
    Heinlien's ,"Let There Be Light", also explores just that issue and what happens when a ground-breaking technology is invented and what the reaction might be. I think contract hits are a little extreme, but weirder things happen in real life.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    13,772
    Quote Originally Posted by a1call View Post
    An interesting law where I live in Quebec, Canada, is that you can not put a turbine on any rivers even if you own the land that the river runs through. By Law only Hydro-Quebec can do that. There must be tons of other regulations protecting their interests.
    I doubt that's unusual, and it's more than just protecting the interests of the power firm. Putting a turbine takes energy from the river, and I think that it many people did it, it would have serious consequences for the river as a whole.
    As above, so below

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    a long way away
    Posts
    10,720
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1054588/

    ... the tale of one man whose fight to receive recognition for his ingenuity would come at a heavy price. But this determined engineer refused to be silenced, and he took on the corporate titans in a battle that nobody thought he could win ...

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    1,805
    Quote Originally Posted by a1call View Post
    (4.)- Should he keep the discovery a secret and fabricate devises in secret and sell the resulting electricity half price? Starting with limited clients in small geographic zones and increase it's market share over time?
    ...
    I would choose option 4 myself.
    Mr X's biggest problem is to persuade people he has done actually something that a lot of people strongly believe is impossible. If he patents the device (and that might be difficult as a lot of places have rules against patenting perpetual motion machines, etc) and expects to reap licence fees, I suspect he will mainly attract scammers. If he tries to sell the device, a lot of people will suspect he is a scammer, like the guy in Germany who was selling zero-point generators which failed to be delivered once you paid him.

    So the best way to do this is actually to generate electricity and sell it. Once it is clear he isn't stealing the electricity, then he will have established his bona fides, no one can argue against an abundance of actual electricity.

    Likely the biggest obstacle to achieving this is having the money to implement the device. Most of these schemes get stuck on the "I need to borrow some money to develop my wonder-machine" "I won't lend it to you because your wonder-machine is impossible, you are a scammer" stand-off.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    18,442
    Quote Originally Posted by ggremlin View Post
    Heinlien's ,"Let There Be Light", also explores just that issue and what happens when a ground-breaking technology is invented and what the reaction might be. I think contract hits are a little extreme, but weirder things happen in real life.
    Heinlein.
    __________________________________________________
    Reductionist and proud of it.

    Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn. Benjamin Franklin
    Chase after the truth like all hell and you'll free yourself, even though you never touch its coat tails. Clarence Darrow
    A person who won't read has no advantage over one who can't read. Mark Twain

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    1,686
    It depends how much the generated electricity would cost. Even if the energy generation itself was free, then there are issues with capital investment, reliability (how ofthen does it break or blow up), staffing, and auxiliary equipment needed to connect to the grid. Also, how does it scale? How easy would it be to make a 1kW, 1MW or 1GW generator?

    I'd start with making small generators and selling them to the Army/Navy for powering combat units, such as UAVs, planes, submarines. That allows to: (1) start from lower powers, and move to higher powers as the time progresses and experience is gained, and (2) gives Mr.X. a strong ally capable of defending him against irritated fuel/energy companies.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759
    Thank you very much for all the posts.
    IMHO there are significant points against patenting a major/revolutionary invention. A good case in point is the invention of radio by Tesla, where he was only credited for it after his penniless death.

    If I may break my own rule for a second, the fact that there is no evidence of option 4 ever been perused by anyone speaks volumes about the feasibility of perpetual motion machines. It is equivalent to no psychic being known to have won lottery grand prizes on a regular basis.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    a long way away
    Posts
    10,720
    Oh, and I thought you were going to say, "because I've just had this idea...."

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    a long way away
    Posts
    10,720
    There is also the fact that the government can take your patent away from you if it covers something affecting national security (did the UK goverment do something like this with the jet engine, or is that urban legend).

    As an energy source like this could, presumably, also be used as a weapon they might decide to appropriate it and keep it secret. Which is why those people hawking free energy machines have to keep such a low profile (apart from accepting payment of course).

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    location
    Posts
    12,410
    Quote Originally Posted by Ivan Viehoff View Post
    So the best way to do this is actually to generate electricity and sell it. Once it is clear he isn't stealing the electricity, then he will have established his bona fides, no one can argue against an abundance of actual electricity.
    I think it would be more lucrative to avoid going head to head with existing enfrastructure right away. A better market would almost certainly be propulsion energy for anything from personal cars to trains to aircraft to sea-going vessels, if the energy density and size are compatible and the new tech is more likely exceed the performance of the status quo.
    Et tu BAUT? Quantum mutatus ab illo.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Oh, and I thought you were going to say, "because I've just had this idea...."
    http://alwaysmarsha.com/wp-content/u...9/06/shhh1.jpg

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    18,442
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    There is also the fact that the government can take your patent away from you if it covers something affecting national security (did the UK goverment do something like this with the jet engine, or is that urban legend).
    They didn't take it away but effectively nullified it by taking over the rights to license the technology in order to have jet engines developed and produced most effectively without the patent holder being able to say anything about who would do it.
    __________________________________________________
    Reductionist and proud of it.

    Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn. Benjamin Franklin
    Chase after the truth like all hell and you'll free yourself, even though you never touch its coat tails. Clarence Darrow
    A person who won't read has no advantage over one who can't read. Mark Twain

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Denmark
    Posts
    18,442
    Quote Originally Posted by kamaz View Post
    I'd start with making small generators and selling them to the Army/Navy for powering combat units, such as UAVs, planes, submarines.
    I'd start with one or two small units, with one (if size-wise feasible, otherwise just use the other and the normal batteries) powering my electric car (just think about the saving there) and one selling power to the electricity company, possibly with fake homebuilt solar panels as cover until I got money enough to bootstrap, possibly by adding a few smaller units first.
    __________________________________________________
    Reductionist and proud of it.

    Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn. Benjamin Franklin
    Chase after the truth like all hell and you'll free yourself, even though you never touch its coat tails. Clarence Darrow
    A person who won't read has no advantage over one who can't read. Mark Twain

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    a long way away
    Posts
    10,720
    Quote Originally Posted by a1call View Post
    IMHO there are significant points against patenting a major/revolutionary invention. A good case in point is the invention of radio by Tesla, where he was only credited for it after his penniless death.
    That is an extraordinary story. I'm not sure it is an argument against patents though. It is an argument for defending your patents from the start (and possibly against coruption).

    The thing is, if Mr X invents this power source, it is likely to be because the ideas are "in the air". So it is quite possible that someone else will come up with the same thing - this hapens quite frequently. In that case, keeping the technology secret wouldn't help but a patent would.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,759
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    The thing is, if Mr X invents this power source, it is likely to be because the ideas are "in the air". So it is quite possible that someone else will come up with the same thing - this hapens quite frequently. In that case, keeping the technology secret wouldn't help but a patent would.
    Perhaps you give to much credit to the phrase "Independently Discovered" which litters the history of science since the utilization of the patent laws.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7laHx...e_gdata_player

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    13,886
    Or Mr. X could just start a capitalist revolution by getting all the other very smart people to come with him to a valley he hides with Refraction Rays.

Similar Threads

  1. Misguided Marketing
    By Fazor in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 32
    Last Post: 2007-Apr-19, 07:04 AM
  2. Modern marketing
    By Charlie in Dayton in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 2006-Mar-21, 05:12 PM
  3. Modern marketing
    By Charlie in Dayton in forum Space Exploration
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 2006-Mar-20, 02:10 AM
  4. Marketing astronomy
    By ToSeek in forum Off-Topic Babbling
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 2005-Mar-02, 02:55 PM
  5. Marketing space to the public
    By ToSeek in forum Astronomy
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 2004-Sep-13, 03:52 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •