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Chapter 5


The technology and engineering dimensions of a high-tech venture are so important that it takes two chapters to describe them fully. This first chapter covers the role of technology in product development, technology progress in logic and memories, and various aspects of technology creation and transfer. The following chapter covers technology and engineering flaws and presents the "technology balance sheet," a framework for analyzing a company's technology and engineering.

The technology dimension is reflected by a firm's ability to assimilate and utilize scientific and engineering knowledge as embodied in components, processes, and the "know-how" of its people. The engineering dimension is reflected by its ability to produce specifications (or actual information in the case of software) for a manufacturing organization. Since technology is the basis for engineering, technology will be discussed first, starting with its role in product development.



The technology needed to develop products can come from a range of sources. When technology emerges solely from science and engineering, the technology is pushing products into the market. In contrast, when technology is required in order to satisfy needs, the market is pulling to create technology. One difficulty with new technology is its acquisition. I firmly believe that the best way (and in some cases, the only way) to transfer technology is to transfer the people associated with the creation of that technology. Because technology is rarely measured, many companies start up without


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