Techknow: State of the art - YET2.COM

Techknow: State of the art - YET2.COM - You might hail the internet as an information age tool, yet most of its B2B applications have been industrial age, involving the exchange of things - products and services - rather than ideas. Missing: a marketplace

by HUNTER MADSEN
Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

You might hail the internet as an information age tool, yet most of its B2B applications have been industrial age, involving the exchange of things - products and services - rather than ideas. Missing: a marketplace for knowledge brokered by true 'infomediaries' online.

Enter www.Yet2.com, a privately held start-up in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Never mind the cutesy name, clumsy writing and so-so design of its web site; consider instead its brilliant enterprise. Yet2.com noted that 'corporations spend billions of dollars annually on R&D of all kinds of technology ... yet only a fraction of worldwide R&D spending is ever commercialised in products. The rest of that enormous pool of innovation lies unused in company archives'.

No more. Yet2.com has created a bazaar for selling and licensing technology across sectors. Since it launched in February 1999, its customer list has ballooned, with innovation powerhouses such as 3M, Dupont, P&G, Dow, Honeywell, Monsanto, Siemens and Ford - each of which posts its unused technologies and searches the Yet2.com database for tech to license. Yet2.com charges sellers several hundred dollars each to post technology abstracts, and charges shoppers smaller fees to search its database. An innovation marketplace online? I'm sold on the idea.

Hunter Madsen huntermadsen@hotmail.com.

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