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Apple recruits top chip designer, IBM responds with suit

post #1 of 96
Thread Starter 
Apple recently recruited a top chip designer from IBM, resulting in a lawsuit that seeks to prevent the executive from taking his knowledge as "IBM's top expert in Power architecture and technology" to the Mac maker.

Mark Papermaster, who served as IBM's vice president of microprocessor technology development, is set to join Apple within the next couple weeks to begin working closely with chief executive Steve Jobs. According to a report by Tom Krazit of CNet News, IBM's complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York indicates that IBM believes this is "an attempt to expand Apple's presence in the markets for servers and chips for handheld devices."

IBM has issued a statement saying "Mr. Papermaster's employment by Apple is a violation of his agreement with IBM against working for a competitor should he leave IBM. We will vigorously pursue this case in court."

AppleInsider is making available both a copy of IBM's 10-page complaint [PDF], as well as the 7-page noncompete agreement [PDF] signed by Papermaster in June of 2006.

PowerPC and PA Semi

Papermaster is the author of a number of papers on chip development at IBM. While Apple has transitioned its Macs from PowerPC to Intel, IBM continues to design and build PowerPC processors for applications from autos to all the major game consoles to workstations and servers. Papermaster's current position has been to manage the company's blade server division.

Apple recently acquired PA Semi, a fabless chip developer that had just introduced a new, highly efficient processor based on a PowerPC design. While pundits immediately began to assume that the company would transition back to PowerPC, the more obvious motivation, cited early by AppleInsider, related to new custom hardware Apple could create using the expertise of PA Semi's brain pool. Jobs later reported that the company would be using the new facilities to develop custom silicon for its handheld devices.

Xserves and blades

CNet observes that "a spruced-up Xserve blade server could be a nice complement to the Mac if Apple ever gets serious about tackling the enterprise market" but also cited analyst Gordon Haff, who "believes that Apple is unlikely to plunge back into the server market headlong after successfully pulling off the transition from a computer company to a consumer electronics company."

A blade server is a high density, self contained server built into a card or module that allows for many independent server "blades" to be packed together in a small space. Apple's 1U Xserve is a slim server, but is not a blade server design. Apple sells its Xserves to broadcasters and video pros, education, and the hospitality industry, such as cruise ships and hotels that rack up Xserves to deliver video on demand services. Building a true blade server would have only a moderate impact on the space consumed by such applications. Given the current size of Apple's server business, it is unlikely the company is desperate to enter the blade server market, even if Papermaster has experience in that product segment at IBM.

It's further suggested that Apple may want to get into the blade server business to support its MobileMe services, writing, "if Apple ever wants to be a major player in the future of Internet-delivered services, it's going to need a lot of computing power at its disposal."

Of course, Apple already has massive power at its disposal, running the iTunes Store as the largest video and music retailer on the planet, as well as the iPhone App Store, the most successful mobile software outlet. It also runs the online Apple Store, one of the most significant online computer retailers, and of course MobileMe, which is pioneering easy-to-use cloud computing services for consumers.

Apple's chip design brain trust

As was the case with PA Semi, the hiring of Papermaster is most likely an effort to build Apple's brain trust in chip development. The expert team Don Dobberpuhl assembled at PA Semi is certainly familiar with IBM's PowerPC technologies already, but Papermaster could provide broader expertise or management experience to Apple. It appears PA Semi will be developing ARM SoC or 'system on a chip' devices that serve as the integrated CPU, GPU, and other functions for mobile devices such as the iPhone and iPod touch. Apple also uses ARM SoCs in its AirPort base stations and appliance servers such as Time Capsule.

Custom designed chips could also find their way into the company's Macs, although the latest crop of notebooks released this month indicate Apple has invested in pairing Intel's CPU with NVIDIA's new controller with relatively powerful integrated graphics. The company has a significant history of building custom parts for new devices or features that were unserved by the generic commodity market.

Suing Papermaster

Whatever Apple has planned for Papermaster, IBM's complaint may not have much to stand upon. CNet notes that "noncompete clauses are generally considered worth less than the paper they are printed on in California," and concludes "Papermaster's hire might wind up as a partial solution to all those questions over what Apple should do with its pile of cash: give a chunk of it to IBM to make this case go away."

Likely for the same reason, IBM has filed its case against Papermaster in New York. The company's complaint describes the 26 year IBM veteran as a member of the "elite Integration and Values Team (I&VT), a group comprising the 300 senior managers of the Company."

IBM says Papermaster "has spent much of his career working in IBM's Systems and Technology Group, more specifically developing 'Power' architecture, a set of confidential know-how belonging to IBM, and using 'Power' architecture to design, develop, and manufacture microprocessors and servers based on that technology."

Referencing Papermaster's current position as vice president of IBM's Blade Development unit, the complaint notes that "IBM's blade model servers [are] based on technology other than 'Power.'"

The complaint also says "Apple and IBM are competitors in the design, manufacture and sale of electronic devices, including servers, personal computers, and microprocessors," noting that while IBM sold its PC business to Lenovo, it continues to hold an interest in that company and generates "significant revenues" from it. It also lists Apple's Xserve as a direct competitor to IBM's System x and BladeCenter lines of small servers.

IBM's complaint says "the relationship between Apple and IBM will become even more competitive in the future." It notes Apple's acquisition of PA Semi, and states that "IBM and PA Semi have been competitors since at least 2006, when Apple, then a customer of IBM, considered replacing IBM's PowerPC microprocessors, which Apple used to incorporate in its line of personal computers, with microprocessors designed by PA Semi."

IBM offered Papermaster "a substantial increase in his total compensation package" to stay at IBM, including "one year's salary." The complaint says Papermaster asked for time to consider the offer, then submitted his resignation the next day.
post #2 of 96
Bwahahahahaha. I don't care what happens to Motorola and IBM. Both traitorous companies. I hope they lose this lawsuit.
post #3 of 96
How stupid is this noncompete agreement?

It appears to mean if you specialise in a certain area, then that means you have to work for the same company for life.

Imagine if it applied to chefs, or lawyers, or teachers.
post #4 of 96
I'll be first inline if this recruit means what I forsee it to mean.

Come on Apple, get some balls and do what was conveyed to us, back in 1997, and if so, I just might suck it up and return to the Bay area. That is, if it speculates to what this hire and other recent hires may produce.
post #5 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by columbus View Post

How stupid is this noncompete agreement?

It appears to mean if you specialise in a certain area, then that means you have to work for the same company for life.

Imagine if it applied to chefs, or lawyers, or teachers.

It certainly is ridiculous. It's why the world is so fucked up today. Everything is about money and, consequently, competition.

People say that competition is what drives better products and accelerates technological evolution. This is *completely* false!!!

Competition and money absolutely slows down technological evolution. IBM will do everything to stop the knowledge from spreading outside its boundaries because it'll lose its competitive edge which would then translate into a loss of money. If competition and money were never an issue, knowledge would spread rapidly and evolution would happen quickly.

Possibly the most blatant example of slow evolution is the plague that is oil companies that are turning in record profits right now. Oil companies have always slowed down alternative energy inventions by buying rights and sitting on the technology or outright clandestinely sending thugs to kill the inventors that did not accept their offer they couldn't (read shouldn't) refuse.
post #6 of 96
"Noncompete's" are worthless, but NDA's aren't. So, if he's called upon to employ knowledge specific to IBM for his new position at Apple, they could be in more serious trouble. This lawsuit is ridiculous because nothing's happened yet. How can you sue for damages when none have been done?

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

 

Get the lowdown on the coming collapse:  http://www.cbo.gov/publication/45010

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post #7 of 96
LOL, every time i hear law suit in amercia i just cant stop laughing......
post #8 of 96
So IBM offers this guy a major increase in his compensation as well as a year's pay if he stays and he still leaves. Why?

If you want to really keep someone you increase compensation before they're ready to leave, not as a last minute effort.

If you really want to keep someone you ensure they are in a job they love so much that they would never leave.

Maybe IBM failed on both counts and Apple presented a future that got him excited again.

Maybe he looked at his future with IBM and wasn't that excited.

The fact that IBM failed to keep him says more about IBM than Apple. The way IBM handles this departure may well open other top people there to think about their options also.
Ken
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Ken
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post #9 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

I'll be first inline if this recruit means what I forsee it to mean.

Come on Apple, get some balls and do what was conveyed to us, back in 1997, and if so, I just might suck it up and return to the Bay area. That is, if it speculates to what this hire and other recent hires may produce.

Huh? What are you refering to
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post #10 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

"Noncompete's" are worthless, but NDA's aren't. So, if he's called upon to employ knowledge specific to IBM for his new position at Apple, they could be in more serious trouble. This lawsuit is ridiculous because nothing's happened yet. How can you sue for damages when none have been done?

I agree non-competes are worthless, but all he has to do is not disclose the salient information in the NDA which isn't hard.

If I'm building an X at IBM under an NDA and I go to Apple and they say, build me an X, I can do so without effect from the NDA, as long as I don't say "hey, I built one just like this at IBM, with these features...".

Anyway this is a yawnfest except that it's a another confirmation that Apple is getting into the chip design business. Good on 'em.
post #11 of 96
I just deleted some honesty
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #12 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

"Noncompete's" are worthless, but NDA's aren't. So, if he's called upon to employ knowledge specific to IBM for his new position at Apple, they could be in more serious trouble. This lawsuit is ridiculous because nothing's happened yet. How can you sue for damages when none have been done?

That's a fair point. Steve could end up in court having to admit to Mac touch though. Sue!!
Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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Citing unnamed sources with limited but direct knowledge of a rumoured device - Comedy Insider (Feb 2014)
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post #13 of 96
This reminded me of the movie "Pay Check". I guess some companies are suffering from extreme condition of paranoia
post #14 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

"Noncompete's" are worthless, but NDA's aren't. So, if he's called upon to employ knowledge specific to IBM for his new position at Apple, they could be in more serious trouble. This lawsuit is ridiculous because nothing's happened yet. How can you sue for damages when none have been done?


I think the value of non-compete contracts vary by state. From what I understand, the state of California won't enforce such a contract, but if he's really from New York, that may be different. And this is a federal suit as well.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

I'll be first inline if this recruit means what I forsee it to mean.

Come on Apple, get some balls and do what was conveyed to us, back in 1997, and if so, I just might suck it up and return to the Bay area. That is, if it speculates to what this hire and other recent hires may produce.


I can't piece together anything that makes sense here.
post #15 of 96
Lol, that was somehow funny to read. Its ironic that last time S.Jobs consider IBM as Darth Vader and now he recruits someone from IBM, though I understand why. Can't wait to see what kind of processor will Apple produce from PA Semi
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post #16 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I think the value of non-compete contracts vary by state. From what I understand, the state of California won't enforce such a contract, but if he's really from New York, that may be different. And this is a federal suit as well.





I can't piece together anything that makes sense here.

i think he is talking about a return to PowerPC


I cant see that happening though
post #17 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by skottichan View Post

i think he is talking about a return to PowerPC

I cant see that happening though

And they were already using PPC in 1997.

It was the sentence structure was what gave me trouble, I couldn't tell what it was saying.
post #18 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by columbus View Post

How stupid is this noncompete agreement?

It appears to mean if you specialise in a certain area, then that means you have to work for the same company for life.

No, it doesn't. Read the agreement. It has the standard clause limiting it to one year after he leaves the company. He's free to legally work for whomever he wants to after that year is up.
post #19 of 96
Based on a thorough reading of both documents, Papermaster will just HAVE TO chill, until a year from now.

It means PA Semi/Apple will need to do without Papermaster's expertise, for the next 12 months.

Either it delays Apple's chip design; takes Apple's chip design in a potentially different direction than if Papermaster were involved; OR demonstrates that Apple's engineers were able to accomplish the same or better, without Papermaster.

At any rate, it's all a moot point now that IBM has gone All Legal.

At the rate those lawsuits get strung out, it will be a year from now before you know it, and things will play out.

I meant to title this:
Legally Papermaster will have to chill until Oct 25, 2009, not 08
post #20 of 96
ouch, guess we have to wait for another year for iPhone 3G 2nd Gen
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post #21 of 96
Apple's not going to get into Blade Servers and the Enterprise.

Papermaster is probably going to work on some new unannounced
mobile product.
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post #22 of 96
Null.
Þ & þ are called "Thorn" & þey represent þe sound you've associated "th" wiþ since þe 13þ or 14þ century. I'm bringing it back.
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Þ & þ are called "Thorn" & þey represent þe sound you've associated "th" wiþ since þe 13þ or 14þ century. I'm bringing it back.
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post #23 of 96
The point to non competes is that it's impossible for someone to not use something confidential used in their work at the previous company.

You would have to blank out some of your knowledge. That's just not possible. Everything you learn, and everything you come up with yourself, becomes part of your overall Gestalt.

Separating that out just can't be done. And after all, that's why a person is being hired away in the first place, because of their experience, knowledge, expertise, and quality. How do you take some of that and say, "Ok, I won't use it." They can't.

That's why there is a period of non compete. That gives their knowledge time to obsolete to the point where it won't be as much of a problem..
post #24 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by kim kap sol View Post

It certainly is ridiculous. It's why the world is so fucked up today. Everything is about money and, consequently, competition.

People say that competition is what drives better products and accelerates technological evolution. This is *completely* false!!!

Competition and money absolutely slows down technological evolution. IBM will do everything to stop the knowledge from spreading outside its boundaries because it'll lose its competitive edge which would then translate into a loss of money. If competition and money were never an issue, knowledge would spread rapidly and evolution would happen quickly.

Possibly the most blatant example of slow evolution is the plague that is oil companies that are turning in record profits right now. Oil companies have always slowed down alternative energy inventions by buying rights and sitting on the technology or outright clandestinely sending thugs to kill the inventors that did not accept their offer they couldn't (read shouldn't) refuse.

Well done, I couldn't have said it better myself.
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post #25 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

IBM has issued a statement saying "Mr. Papermaster's employment by Apple is a violation of his agreement with IBM against working for a competitor should he leave IBM. We will vigorously pursue this case in court."

That's a bit of a harsh agreement. Surely they would be required to compensate for the lack of work. You can't just force someone to never be able to work in the job they've been qualified for years in. All you can do is protect your own IP if it ever gets used.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Papermaster is the author of a number of papers

Makes sense really.

The name reminds me of the Puppet Master from Ghost in the Shell:

"We in Section 6 have been pursuing the [Paper] Master with the utmost urgency since he first appeared."
"lf you can't recover him, l want the [Paper] Master destroyed.
Without fail."
"But why did the [Paper] Master run over to Section 9?
lt was his decision.
Probably for reasons we can't even guess at.
Perhaps he has a thing for someone over there."
"Now suppose, for some reason, they suddenly lost control of it.
That would explain why they'd risk assaulting Section 9 to get it back.
lf the [Paper] Master started talking
it'd be an international incident."

Throw the hammer at Section 6 again Apple. They cannot have control over the Paper Master.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

IBM's complaint says "the relationship between Apple and IBM will become even more competitive in the future." It notes Apple's acquisition of PA Semi, and states that "IBM and PA Semi have been competitors since at least 2006, when Apple, then a customer of IBM, considered replacing IBM's PowerPC microprocessors, which Apple used to incorporate in its line of personal computers, with microprocessors designed by PA Semi."

I don't see how IBM and Apple are competitors given that Apple don't make processors. With iphone they use ARM, in their computers and servers, they use Intel. They don't compete in the high end server space so there's very little ground they compete on.
post #26 of 96
I hope Apple defends this by throwing the book (er ah, I mean hammer) at them. I would argue that you can't sign away your right to work. It's a restriction of trade. Anyway, if Apple wants him enough, they'll find ways to keep him gainfully employed until his 12 months restriction of trade clause is up. To me, its all quite simple. Apple wants a super low power consuming chip for its mobile devices ( announced or under development). There is no conflict of interest here, for if IBM had such a chip, Apple would simply buy/license it. No, Apple knows what it wants, nobody else is in that space, so Apple has enough cash to go and do it themselves. More power to them I say.

Pete
post #27 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

No, it doesn't. Read the agreement. It has the standard clause limiting it to one year after he leaves the company. He's free to legally work for whomever he wants to after that year is up.

So what's he meant to do, go on benefits for a year and hope the Apple job is still available once his former employers have deemed he can apply his expertise and knowledge in microprocessor design for someone other than IBM?

I didn't realise the year cool off piece was in the contract, but that just makes it more stupid. WHat's he meant to have done after a year, forgotten all his knowledge? Unlikely.
post #28 of 96
Quote:
I take it you mean the iPhone 3rd Gen?

Haha, that too

Quote:
So what's he meant to do, go on benefits for a year and hope the Apple job is still available once his former employers have deemed he can apply his expertise and knowledge in microprocessor design for someone other than IBM?

You got a point though. Yeah, I doubt he will forget all those years of work Unless IBM brainwashed him, LOL
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post #29 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by columbus View Post

So what's he meant to do, go on benefits for a year and hope the Apple job is still available once his former employers have deemed he can apply his expertise and knowledge in microprocessor design for someone other than IBM?

I didn't realise the year cool off piece was in the contract, but that just makes it more stupid. WHat's he meant to have done after a year, forgotten all his knowledge? Unlikely.

NC agreements almost always have one-year durations. You're trying reductio ad absurdum unsuccessfully. He can get any other kind of job he's qualified for. The agreement only prohibits him from doing essentially the same work he did for IBM. After the year is up, he's free to do the same work but it will be safer for IBM by that time because he no longer has knowledge of their most current research or upcoming designs.
post #30 of 96
Actually, I'm sure they considered the possibility and have a legal defense prepared. It's a civil suit. All IBM can get is money, and I'd guess they will get some. They can't actually make Paperclip do anything if Apple will pay for any legal problems.

Apple decided that Paperclip is worth it. I hope he is.
post #31 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by kim kap sol View Post

Possibly the most blatant example of slow evolution is the plague that is oil companies that are turning in record profits right now. Oil companies have always slowed down alternative energy inventions ...........

there is a lot of truth in the above statement (not sure about the remaining part which I edited out), but also consider the role of politicians who stifle research and investment for their own petty political survival, but I digress.

Reading the article, I wonder how these things work out in America. I mean here we have two blue chip companies, one of them (Apple) poached a senior manager from the other (IBM) with the clear intention to tap in the inside knowledge and experience. At this level all top managers are required to sign confidentiality agreements. It'd been expected for IBM to put up a legal fight. I'm sure Appple's legal department must have looked into Papermaster's contract and decided it was a risk worth taking on. He (Papermaster) must have done the same with his own lawyers. However there is a risk involved in these litigation. Where I'm getting at, has Papermaster reached an agreement with Apple along these lines: "ok, if IBM fight the case, we all believe we have a good cause but in the worst case scenario, you Apple either pay IBM a fine to free me up or if I'm impeded to join then you give me a golden handshake as I cannot go back to IBM and will be therefore unemployed"
post #32 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by kim kap sol View Post

It certainly is ridiculous. It's why the world is so fucked up today. Everything is about money and, consequently, competition.

People say that competition is what drives better products and accelerates technological evolution. This is *completely* false!!!

Competition and money absolutely slows down technological evolution. IBM will do everything to stop the knowledge from spreading outside its boundaries because it'll lose its competitive edge which would then translate into a loss of money. If competition and money were never an issue, knowledge would spread rapidly and evolution would happen quickly.

Possibly the most blatant example of slow evolution is the plague that is oil companies that are turning in record profits right now. Oil companies have always slowed down alternative energy inventions by buying rights and sitting on the technology or outright clandestinely sending thugs to kill the inventors that did not accept their offer they couldn't (read shouldn't) refuse.

What a load of BS!

What do you think keeps Apple innovating?... competition! Without it there would be near zero growth in civilian tech sector... as an example, see the Soviet Union! They had world class technology for a long time... except that it never made it to their civilian sector! no money, no competition, no goods!

We live in the most capitalist country on the planet, ever wonder why we have a greater share of the entrepreneurs & innovation? Money and competition! Without competition technology stagnates! Look at windows for another example. No one has ever said windows is the best OS but after MS killed the competition... stagnation with ouly minor fixes and eye-candy updates!

This is why Linux will always be pulling up the rear in technology! There is no money in developing/innovating for Linux directly. That will be done in the proprietary world then Linux will open source the technology at a later time! Like all absolutes there are some exceptions but they are extremely rare!

Your oil company example actually kills your own case... They kill the competition so the technology stagnates. This is why monopolies are bad, no COMPETITION!

KRR
post #33 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by kim kap sol View Post


Possibly the most blatant example of slow evolution is the plague that is oil companies that are turning in record profits right now. Oil companies have always slowed down alternative energy inventions by buying rights and sitting on the technology or outright clandestinely sending thugs to kill the inventors that did not accept their offer they couldn't (read shouldn't) refuse.


Hey! I have to respond to your line about oil companies.... as I work for one.
1. if you don't want oil, don't use it (you will have no cars, no shoes, no clothes, no almost anything). stop blaming oil companies for the sluts and greedy people we are.
2. are they turning in record profits? goooood. why nobody asked any of the banks and brokers who turned in record profits last year, or the year before, or two years ago? just look at the top 10 money makers in the last 3 years and you will see 1 oil company in and the rest are banks (bank of am, citigroup, etc.) what did these banks do? got us in the economic mess we are in right now, used (and still using) outrages fees, interest, and business practices to rip people off, move the pile of money from NY to LA to Jakarta and Hong Kong, and get more money out of it at the end of the day. I think Americans need to understand that you need to produce something, and of good quality, in order to make money. That means computers like apple, cars like the Japanese cars, nuclear reactors like the Canadian ones, etc. The DotCom crashed because they were selling puff pastry into thin air. The housing boom crashed because of speculants and greedy brokers who ripped off prople.
3. you want alternative energy? I want that too. I live in the great state of tx (because of work and not choice). I would put a solar roof but my incentives are so minimal that i do not want to spend 40k that I will maybe recoup in 30 years. i wanted to bring a small car (diesel) from europe (that has about 60miles/gal and it is much cleaner than my honda ULEV). but, sorry, can't do that because of the american protectionism toward their fat piggy cars.
4. and give me a break with oil compnies sending people to wack inventors because they did not want to sell their stuff to the oil companies. the fact of the matter is that alternative en are too expensive compared to fossil fuels and it will take time to replace the infrastructure you have in place right now. The $140/baril was the best thing that happened for alt. en. It made it more competitive with fossil fuels, people started conserving energy, and the big ugly SUV were out ofthe market.
post #34 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by BuffyzDead View Post

Based on a thorough reading of both documents, Papermaster will just HAVE TO chill, until a year from now.

It means PA Semi/Apple will need to do without Papermaster's expertise, for the next 12 months.

Either it delays Apple's chip design; takes Apple's chip design in a potentially different direction than if Papermaster were involved; OR demonstrates that Apple's engineers were able to accomplish the same or better, without Papermaster.

At any rate, it's all a moot point now that IBM has gone All Legal.

At the rate those lawsuits get strung out, it will be a year from now before you know it, and things will play out.

I meant to title this:
Legally Papermaster will have to chill until Oct 25, 2009, not 08

I read the non-compete clause, too, and I'm not sure I agree. There seems to be a rather obvious hole in IBM's legal assertion: The fact that none of Apple's and IBM's products actually compete with each other in any market.

IBM has no mobile handset. IBM has no MP3 player. IBM does not make consumer computers anymore.

Apple does not sell chip fab or design services. Apple doesn't buy, sell, or trade in IBM's chip architecture or any products made from it.

Basically, unless IBM is going to assert that this man is not allowed to practice his craft AT ALL for a year after leaving, Papermaster couldn't have picked a company IBM competes LESS with than Apple. From how it looks to me, Papermaster made every attempt to choose a company that honored his non-compete, and I see a judge as likely to throw IBM out on its butt with prejudice.

I'm not a lawyer.
post #35 of 96
So - IBM offered the guy an extra year's salary. Couldn't Apple do the same thing a year from now? What would stop Papermaster from volunteering at Apple for a year, then getting a double paycheck the next year?
post #36 of 96
One year non-competes are standard practise. In the UK its called 'gardening leave' (ie you go and tend your garden for a year). The contention will be whether IIBM and Apple are competing in the specific area he is joining. Its clear that Apple's lawyers believe there's no conflict. Worst case he'll have to spend the year moving his family to Cali and decorate the house, taking 20 calls a day from Steve on his 'secure' iPhone.

Seriously, who could resist working with Steve on some new R&D project with unlimited funds?
post #37 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

I don't see how IBM and Apple are competitors given that Apple don't make processors. With iphone they use ARM, in their computers and servers, they use Intel. They don't compete in the high end server space so there's very little ground they compete on.

You haven't been keeping up on the Apple rumors. Rumor has it that Apple is looking at creating it's own low power processor (likely PowerPC) for mobile or consumer electronic devices... maybe the iPhone or iPod Touch or some new device. The reason it bought all those P.A. Semi employees.
post #38 of 96
Seems reasonable. Nothing nefarious here, on either party.

IBM just wants to protect its intellectual property and has their employees agree to an NDA that excludes them to go to the 'other' side for a period of 12 months.

Like all major corporations, it is a standard business practice and I know for sure that Apple has equal conditions placed on its staff, particularly at the level discussed.

Could you imagine how you would feel if you were an investor and found out that such conditions were not in place? Without such, a investment could be destroyed overnight it its trade secrets were perceived as being compromised.

And please keep in mind that the concerns are not as simple as just protecting a product line. In this case, Papermaster's move particularly re his involvement at his level in the current and near future strategic, manufacturing, marketing and sales plans would be equally disconcerting.

For a better understanding What is Intellectual Property" and "Why Protecting Intellectual Property Rights Matters": http://usinfo.state.gov/products/pubs/intelprp/
post #39 of 96
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leonard View Post

You haven't been keeping up on the Apple rumors. Rumor has it that Apple is looking at creating it's own low power processor (likely PowerPC) for mobile or consumer electronic devices... maybe the iPhone or iPod Touch or some new device. The reason it bought all those P.A. Semi employees.

As long as they just use their own processors in their own devices, they're still NOT COMPETING in any market.

Besides, Apple's not an idiot company-- why on Earth would they take the step backwards from ARM to PowerPC? My guess is they'd design an ARM core for use solely in their own products. (Products which IBM doesn't make and therefore DOESN'T COMPETE with.)
post #40 of 96
I think IBM's NC is flawed.

In paragraph 2, sub.d, it make a statement that the "restricted area" is defined as any geographical area in the world where you had job responsibilities..."

My lawyers have always said basically, "you can't keep someone from making a living".

Including the whole world should get tossed in court if it ever made it that far. I am surprised that this language is in an IBM document. Maybe they just haven't been tested in court...
OMG here we go again...
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OMG here we go again...
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