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Former IBM chip expert cleared to begin work at Apple

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Apple announced Tuesday that Mark Papermaster, the former IBM chip expert who was sued by Big Blue for allegedly violating a non-compete agreement by accepting a position at Apple, is now free to begin work as a VP for the iPhone maker this spring.

"The litigation between IBM and Mark Papermaster has been resolved," Apple said in a brief statement to the press.

Papermaster will be coming to Apple as senior vice president of Devices Hardware Engineering, reporting directly to Apple chief executive Steve Jobs, on April 24. He'll be tasked with leading the Cupertino-based company's iPod and iPhone hardware engineering teams following the departure of iPod creator Anthony Fadell, who last fall elected to vacate his post as iPod chief for personal reasons.

Apple recruited the new executive from IBM last October, resulting in an immediate lawsuit from Big Blue based on his contract's non-compete clause. At the time, IBM insisted the 26-year veteran would hurt IBM's business by working for Apple. Papermaster was part of an elite group comprising the 300 senior managers within the company.

In early November, the would-be hire responded in court, asserting there is no conflict between Papermaster's new job and his old work for IBM.

"I do not recall a single instance of Apple being described as a competitor of IBM during my entire tenure at IBM," Papermaster said. He added that IBM's focus on server-side hardware and software, pure data storage, and supporting services do not apply to his work with Apple's handheld devices like the iPhone and iPod touch. Those two businesses, Papermaster claimed, do not conflict with each other.

Trying to further support the idea that Papermaster wasn't hired to work on semiconductors, Apple touted his skills as a manager and executive first, his technical knowledge second.

Jobs and Fadell were both known to have interviewed Papermaster personally, and Apple human resources VP Danielle Lambert said "nobody questioned" his ability to lead a development team.

U.S. Federal District Judge Kenneth Karas ordered Papermaster to "immediately cease" work with Apple later that week, pending a decision from the court. Apple quietly took Papermaster's bio down from its site as the dispute continued.

AppleInsider later uncovered documents revealing that Papermaster wasn't Apple's first choice for the position, and IBM officials were unclear in their conversations with him over whether the non-compete clause could prevent him from going back to work.

Papermaster filed a countersuit against his former employer, arguing that Apple and IBM are not significant or major competitors. Further, he argued certain clauses in his contract were unreasonably broad, so much so that they could restrict him from going to work for a competitor even if he'd be working on something completely unrelated to the work he performed at IBM.

Terms of the settlement leading to today's announcement have not been released.

Papermaster has 25 years of product and technology experience, and was previously a vice president at IBM. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas, and a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Vermont in 1988.

The IBM veteran is also active with the University of Texas where he is a member of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Advisory Council.
post #2 of 21
It's time for


[CENTER] Total World Domination. [/CENTER]
He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
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He's a mod so he has a few extra vBulletin privileges. That doesn't mean he should stop posting or should start acting like Digital Jesus.
- SolipsismX
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post #3 of 21
Would love to have been a fly on the wall when this was settled. My best guess is that IBM was acting reflexively; perhaps to a pre-established corporate policy. Still, would like to know the nature of the deal. Was it carrot or stick?
A.k.a. AppleHead on other forums.
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A.k.a. AppleHead on other forums.
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post #4 of 21
I find it odd that he doesn't start work until April. Perhaps they compromised on a six month waiting period instead of the year listed in the non-compete.
post #5 of 21
Now they need to hire somebody to manage the automobile division:
http://money.cnn.com/news/newsfeeds/..._car_aapl.html
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Would love to have been a fly on the wall when this was settled. My best guess is that IBM was acting reflexively; perhaps to a pre-established corporate policy. Still, would like to know the nature of the deal. Was it carrot or stick?


IBM was one of the few companies to post a profit.
post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Papermaster will be ... reporting directly to Apple chief executive Steve Jobs, on April 24.

Won't that be kinda hard to do if Steve is on leave until June at the earliest?
post #8 of 21
What an unnecessary waste of time, money, etc. given an outcome that seemed quite inevitable......
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by quinney View Post

Now they need to hire somebody to manage the automobile division:
http://money.cnn.com/news/newsfeeds/..._car_aapl.html

LOL, that's a funny article. I don't think apple would make a car or any motor. I think what they will do is pair up for example with VW or Audi (same company) and work on the electronics for it, while the car company on the motor, safety and design.

But this is way after Apple takes over our houses.

Apple had me at scrolling
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Apple had me at scrolling
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post #10 of 21
The recent media madness over Steve Jobs has highlighted how carefully Apple select its top staff. So Papermaster's start at Apple has to be good news.

Is it possible that Anthony Fadell will turn up at Palm, after waiting for his own non-compete to expire?

Shaw Wu wanted the job. Apparantly he had some great ideas centred around a $200 plastic netbook.

Many of the most important software concepts were invented in the 70s and forgotten in the 80s.

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Many of the most important software concepts were invented in the 70s and forgotten in the 80s.

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post #11 of 21
There are only three kinds of people that quit Apple, the dead (or dying), the incompetent, and those leaving to start their own cool business.
Quote:
Originally Posted by PXT View Post

... Is it possible that Anthony Fadell will turn up at Palm, after waiting for his own non-compete to expire?...

I think this guy is in the middle category although we shall see if he does anything when the non-compete is up.

If Anthony Fadell got his way, the iPhone would be running Linux today. To me, that's someone who just doesn't "get it."
In Windows, a window can be a document, it can be an application, or it can be a window that contains other documents or applications. Theres just no consistency. Its just a big grab bag of monkey...
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In Windows, a window can be a document, it can be an application, or it can be a window that contains other documents or applications. Theres just no consistency. Its just a big grab bag of monkey...
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post #12 of 21
This should lead to a revitalized iPod division. Frankly the iPod product line is a bit on the stale side. Especially Touch based devices as there is huge and I do mean HUGE untapped potential here. I'd like to see Apple expand both the IPod Touch line up and the iPhone line up to give people real choice in capabilities. One big choice would be screen size followed closely buy true multitasking capabilities.

The only fear I have is that he (Papermaster) may be to much of a manager and not enough of a technologist. Unfortunately I've seen to many companies ruined by professional managers. It is not the professional skills, with respect to management, but rather there ability to grok the market place and the demand there.

Dave
post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by quinney View Post

Now they need to hire somebody to manage the automobile division:
http://money.cnn.com/news/newsfeeds/..._car_aapl.html

I'm not sure if any of that plays to Apple's strengths. It's a significant leap compared to Apple's transition to a consumer electronics company, because all of Apple's devices are basically computers in one form or another. On a car, a computer is almost incidental. It is a necesssary component now, but it makes up a negligible portion of the whole product.
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I'm not sure if any of that plays to Apple's strengths. It's a significant leap compared to Apple's transition to a consumer electronics company, because all of Apple's devices are basically computers in one form or another. On a car, a computer is almost incidental. It is a necesssary component now, but it makes up a negligible portion of the whole product.

Yeah. I posted the link because I thought it was a funny story.
On the other hand, Apple sells devices which make telephone calls, access GPS data,
play music, and search the internet for information. All of these functions are
certainly useful in an automobile. I can imagine a device which plugs into the console
of a car, like current stereos with removable face plates. I think it is within the realm
of possibility that Apple could develop a device like that with an auto maker. Maybe a
version of the iPhone/iPod Touch with a larger screen. Ford uses Microsoft software
in some of their newer cars, so maybe some other car company would consider
hooking up with Apple to create something way better.

So as not to be too far off topic, observe that such a device would probably be
under Papermaster's purview.
post #15 of 21
I believe we will be entering into the era of the handhelds for computing and Apple is leading the way because they control both the hardwares and softwares.
Kudos to them.

As for Tony Fardell, sad to say he is history when the iPods enter into its next rejuvenation.
post #16 of 21
Quote:
IBM insisted the 26-year old veteran would hurt IBM's business by working for Apple

Quote:
Papermaster has 25 years of product and technology experience, and was previously a vice president at IBM

No wonder Apple wanted him, he was a genius at the tender age of....one!!
A reputation is not built upon the restful domain of one's comfort zone; it is made out of stalwart exposition of your core beliefs, for all challenges to disprove them as irrelevant hubris.- Berp...
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A reputation is not built upon the restful domain of one's comfort zone; it is made out of stalwart exposition of your core beliefs, for all challenges to disprove them as irrelevant hubris.- Berp...
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post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

What an unnecessary waste of time, money, etc. given an outcome that seemed quite inevitable......

Yup... standard practice at corporations, small, medium or large. Now I've got some pointers from this Papermaster guy, I've got some noncompete clauses on my contract I've got to, uh, navigate. I like the "not significant or major competitors" part. This guy's got the right attitude joining Apple, starting with a good "FU*K YOU IBM KISS MY A55". Ballsy... I like it. I hope the products he helps create also have a similar in-your-face, uh, edge to them.
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by NPrtmn4evr View Post

Won't that be kinda hard to do if Steve is on leave until June at the earliest?

iChat with Steve ...Remember how a certain effect for iChat was taken out? That's because it is used in all official remote communication with Steve Jobs.

post #19 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Underhill View Post

No wonder Apple wanted him, he was a genius at the tender age of....one!!

He is a 26 year veteren at IBM, presumably started sometime after he got his degreees.


Quote:
Originally Posted by nvidia2008 View Post

iChat with Steve ...Remember how a certain effect for iChat was taken out? That's because it is used in all official remote communication with Steve Jobs.

image: http://lh3.ggpht.com/_dgBWLeWm3pM/SY...0/hologram.jpg

Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #20 of 21
But did you see the terms of the agreement that got everybody to settle the suit?
http://www.informationweek.com/news/...leID=212902972
Quote:
... Papermaster must check in with IBM if he suspects that any innovations he develops at Apple infringe on confidential or proprietary information he picked up during his years of work at Big Blue.

"To the extent that Mr. Papermaster has a question as to whether any information he intends to or may disclose or otherwise use in any way is IBM confidential information Mr. Papermaster will raise such question with IBM before any disclosure or use of that information," Judge Kenneth Karas wrote in a consent order filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan.

What's more, the settlement dictates that IBM, and only IBM, gets to decide if the techniques in question derive from its intellectual property, and its decisions are not subject to appeal -- even to the court. IBM's determination "shall be final and binding and not subject to review in any way," Karas wrote.

So Papermaster has to periodically report back to IBM whatever he's doing and IBM can, at their sole discression, declare that they own the tech, and Apple has no recourse if they do.

Sounds like a totally insane agreement. I'd love to know why Apple agreed to hire him under those conditions. It seems to me like they're giving IBM full license to steal whatever tech they want.
post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by shamino View Post

But did you see the terms of the agreement that got everybody to settle the suit?
http://www.informationweek.com/news/...leID=212902972
So Papermaster has to periodically report back to IBM whatever he's doing and IBM can, at their sole discression, declare that they own the tech, and Apple has no recourse if they do.

Sounds like a totally insane agreement. I'd love to know why Apple agreed to hire him under those conditions. It seems to me like they're giving IBM full license to steal whatever tech they want.

Can you read?
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