A Practical Navigator for the Internet Economy

Exploring ICT Leadership In Taiwan

“oneVillage” Builds Appropriate Technology Bridges While ITRI Focuses on Providing Resources for New Technology Development

July 31 Ewing, NJ   The September issue examines ITRI as an Incubator for flexible display technology and a looks at a private effort to develop programs to build feedback for appropriate use of ICT technology in the third world. How to purchase this issue.

We interview Joy Tang of oneVillage who explains how she has developed and is carrying out in the philosophy of Amartya Sen in broad based bridge building in Ghana and other developing countries that takes teams of Taiwanians of varied backgrounds and sends them to host countries on behalf of an effort to work with local leaders.

Taiwan’s Approach to Technology Policy p. 4

The September issue examines ITRI as an Incubator for flexible display technology and a looks at a private effort to develop programs to build feedback for appropriate use of ICT technology in the third world.

We interview Joy Tang of oneVillage who explains how she has developed and is carrying out in the philosophy of Amartya Sen in broad based bridge building in Ghana and other developing countries that takes teams of Taiwanians of varied backgrounds and sends them to host countries on behalf of an effort to work with local leaders. Once there groups of educated Ghanaians and their volunteer partners from countries with world-class ICT knowledge and infrastructure like Taiwan set up shop in Ghanaian villages where they work with local leaders to develop ICT technology appropriate to the villagers needs.

They live with the people and build Friefunk wireless mesh networks. While doing so they see local problems and priorities apply their ICT knowledge to making solutions that will met those local needs in the most environmentally friendly and least disruptive way.

Joy is also building relationships with Taiwanese companies and, in the process, is teaching them to understand that there are significant markets at the bottom of the pyramid for inexpensive but highly capable commoditized ICT products that may be designed in Taiwan and built on the Chinese mainland. She is nurturing an ICT-based economic development industry or market mechanism that should grow in importance for Taiwan and its future in a partnership with the Chinese mainland.

Display Technology p.10

Dr. David N Liu, Strategic Planning Division Director, Display Technology Center, Industrial Technology Research Institute, in a two part interview, explains the functionality and market niches for traditional flat panel displays.

We learn how new display technology has generally been financially enabled only by the emergence of markets that cannot be served by the older technology.

We are introduced to OLED technology and given a description of how that fits into the market. And we find out the design criteria for extremely high resolution LCD displays where the back light technology becomes the most important criteria for displays of more than 100 pixels per inch.

David Liu takes us in considerable detail through ITRI’s work in flexible flat panel displays. His lab is changed with the development and commercialization of this new technology ranging from reusable displays that function almost like paper to very large wall hanging displays that have the ultimate goal of supporting full motion hi definition video.

For the purposes of this issue understanding the economic policy process of how ITRI works within the Taiwanese government financial and commercial system is as important as understanding the technology. ITRI having learned from the US now has much to teach us about what Carlota Perez would call the intelligent intervention of government.

A few quotes -- Liu: Making a high-resolution liquid crystal display is not so much the problem of the display itself but rather the fact that you have to sacrifice the light open ratio as you seek to improve the resolution. If you make a pixel of a very small size, you still have the transistor there and the data line there. The area through which light can pass is getting very small. As the size of the pixels grows smaller, given the same amount of back light, the display will get darker.

To increase the amount of pixels per inch is not a problem. It is just a matter of adjusting the lithography. But doing so leaves us with a fresh problem of a sharply decreased open ratio for the light needed to make the display function. The technology advancement needed here is to maintain the open ratio in spite of the smaller pixel size.

and later

COOK Report: It sounds as though you were saying you intend to use the research capabilities available from other parts of ITRI in order to achieve the objectives of the Display Technology Center?

Liu: Yes. This slide is showing that there are many different laboratories that are working on different research problems. For example: optoelectronics, mechanical system or equipment research, measurement research, and material and chemical basic research. However, in terms of display research and development, the DTC serves as the focus center. The Digital Technology Center is responsible for the research and development strategy for flexible displays and responsible for process and systems development and technology integration in the field of flexible displays as well.

COOK Report: Then this is an example of where, when you are trying to make a new technology, given the structure of ITRI, you have the basic research centers on whose capabilities you can rely? For example, you can go to the scientists in the materials and chemical research labs and say: “hey we need to make a component with the following characteristics. Let’s sit down and talk about how you can help us to achieve this goal?”

Liu: That is correct. This shows that while in ITRI we operate in separate divisions, we are also very well interconnected.

And finally COOK Report: So you are saying then that you think you can transfer the mature flat-panel display technologies LCD and the emerging OLED to flexible displays? That is very impressive indeed. It sounds like it would be easier to use OLED technology in this way?

Liu: Yes we are saying that. Because OLEDs don’t need a color filter, nor a backlight nor a polarizer, they are indeed hospitable to flexible displays. They just need their own electronic substrate and luminescent material.

Sympoisium Discussion

Bandwidth Caps p. 32

A detailed discussion of why bandwidth to Australia has been and remains extremely expensive.

Goldstein: The long-term DPI/IMS problem is not volume-based applications, since those can be cleanly and neutrally managed by threshold pricing (which is now starting to move into the US, something I do not object to, so long as prices are reasonable and not at, say, Aussie levels). The problem (focus on the word "deep") is when the network operator tries to extract a piece of the value of transactions crossing the wire. Taking a cut of e-commerce, taking a fee for e-banking (playing Visa with just the wire), taking a value-based fee for downloads, etc. Those are real threats and DPI vendors have marketed the concept to network operators.

Editor: Three equivalent providers are necessary for real price competitiuon.

Tom Vest: I will say that any network segment market that is contested by at least three providers, each of which is capable of providing equivalent and substitutable infrastructure to third parties, will generally be immune to the kind of market or pricing power that can keep prices "high" regardless of both actual supply and demand conditions. Assuming, of course, that there is no collusion.

However, for better or worse, optical multiplexing technology has effectively invested modern optical facilities platforms with "near infinite" capacity -- certainly near enough so that it's hard to imagine anyone ever building a second, fully (and literally) "redundant" physical path in many places, except perhaps for absolutely critical sites like hospitals, banks, military installations, etc. So if three really is the minimum number to produce a "natural" competitive immunity from price predation, then I guess we'd all better hope that our power and water utilities are independent and entrepreneurially-inclined... or else perhaps, that we've got good regulators...

Vest: One of the great ironies and tragedies of the modern economic era (i.e., the era in which people are at least vaguely familiar with economic theories, and at least occasionally conscious of themselves as "economic agents") is that many people want to believe that they can be positively diabolical in their private pursuits, and yet simultaneously hold that all government and public rules or regulation is inefficient and unnecessary.

Geoff Huston: However the impact of WDM has made the relative component of these costs in the total cost of delivery of one byte of data plummet, and the cost of acquiring the customer and supporting the customer now dominate costs, while transmission, and cost of offshore transmission in particular have sunk to a current level of well under 10% of the total cost - as far as I can tell. Obviously I'm not quoting anyone's commercial in confidence figures here, so the numbers are very approximate.

DIF Architecture for Enterpise Customers? p. 41

COOK Report: Knowing that Darkstrand is talking about selling enterprises bandwidth on NLR to bridge between research and commercial applications, I have a question for Fred and others. If an enterprise buys an NLR lightwave - could or should Darkstrand attempt to set up that lightwave as a DIF according to the discussion below?

(With reference to John Day’s January 2008 book:

Thoughts? Any and all? With a shortage of IPv4 looming do DIFs become attractive? (I gave Fred a few Darkstrand pointers in a voice conversation on Friday.}

Goldstein: Personally, I would like to see some experimenting with the concept.

Open Source p.43

Frank Coluccio: As you know, I've been lurking in summary mode, taking in what I can, during a period of intense development here. I'm writing about the subject, prompted in large part by the Symbian release of this past week, and the continuing discussions emanating from BT on the subject (BT's Maria Pardee's TelecomTV interview, which is cited in one of the links below).

Open Source communities and similar federations of development "ecosystems" in their broadest (and sometimes narrowest) contexts are beginning to play heavily in our planning processes and appears to be taking on new meanings in a variety of ways, albeit still-nascent, from an operational perspective, yet maturing, nonetheless. This has led me to revisit some of the past discussions on this list going back to the threads based on John Hagel's and John Seely- Brown's book, "The Only Sustainable Edge".

Cutting to the quick, I began a thread discussion on my forum yesterday, which can be accessed at the URL below. It's only four replies in length thus far, including one of my own, traceable by clicking 'Next' or the 'Read Replies" buttons at the top right of each page.

I'd appreciate your posting this to your list of erudite and "open"-minded thinkers, some of whom already using open source approaches in their respective fields, for the purpose of eliciting comments, criticisms and suggestions, and I'll naturally be looking forward, in any case, to your own comments as well.

Editor: what follows is an excellent bibliographic essay from Michel Bauwens on the state of the art of the use of open source in project development ecosystems – done as a part of global collaboration.

EU Study on Business Case for Fiber Nets p.48

The politics of fiber in Europe:

Vest: Sure to be a shocker for members of this list...

Begin forwarded message:


Economics of fibre networks prevent widespread replication. ECTA calls for mandatory access to fibre networks in the EU Telecoms Framework to counter anti-competition threat

Optical Network Migration Strategies p. 50

Coluccio: First, it [the report from Cannes] suggests a convergence of previously- perceived 'residential last mile' technologies, on the one hand, and the general metro network fabric that has heretofore typically been associated with business services only.

This is the direction in which we see enterprises and other non-residential networks headed in the not too distant future, and it will be supported largely by "passive" infrastructure where today it is intensely machine-like (does the phrase "copper cage" ring a bell for anyone here?) and electrified. Also note the natural outgrowth that follows this approach, due to the elimination of old copper network distance constraints: the closing down of thousands of central offices in the process. Hm.. do you suppose enterprises and other organizations outside of DT's reach will be far behind in terms of catching on to these capabilities? Stay tuned.

Thoughts on Network Evolution p. 52

Andrew Odlyzko asks for feedback on NGN design paper draft

Odlyzko: The assumption that transportation and communication are substitutes for each other is a couple of centuries old (and is cited prominently today in connection with proposals to ameliorate global warming). Yet it has a couple of centuries of evidence that uniformly refutes it; while the precise dynamics are complicated, and not completely understood, transportation and communication tend to grow in parallel, and one stimulates the other.


Odlyzko: So the conclusion is that the chances that any network architecture, espe-
cially one chosen by a committee, is likely to succeed more by luck than by design. Hence the need for maximal flexibility.

BT Late July Fiber Announcement Greeted with Skepticism, p. 60

van der Woude: There is of course that little "only when..." clause:

"A supportive and enduring regulatory environment is essential if this investment is to take place. Given this, BT will be discussing with Ofcom the conditions that would be necessary to enable this programme to progress. These include removing current barriers to investment and making sure that anyone who chooses to invest in fibre can earn a fair rate of return for their shareholders."

From DSL reports by Karl Bode: Of course these half-hearted approaches to network upgrades are in order to please nervous investors, who start fidgeting like children in church when presented with the huge upfront costs of true FTTH (though they have the luxury of bailing when the company is no longer competitive). So companies instead embrace "fiber to the press release," a blend of fiber and pure, refined marketing that allows them to pretend they offer last mile fiber.

Not only is it less expensive than truly future-proofing your network, the telco gets the added bonus of being able to dangle real fiber deployment over the heads of lawmakers every time they want a new law passed.


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Why Technology Policy is Too Important to Be Left to Chance - an Editorial

Some Insights into Internet’s Role in Fostering Innovation within Global and Regional Economies

From Tech Policy Innovation in Taiwan to the Same in the United States p. 2
Reason for Hope p. 3

Exploring ICT Leadership In Taiwan

“oneVillage” Builds Appropriate Technology Bridges into Third World Villages While ITRI Focuses on Providing Resources for New Technology Development

Origin of Joy’s Work p. 4
Relationship Building p. 8

The Present and Future State of the Art of Display Technology

Conversations with David N. Liu, Director of Strategic Planning for the Display Technology Center at ITRI

Introduction p. 10

Part one Flat Panel Displays –

The Display’s Application
Reflects its Technology Design p. 12
Current Flat Panel Technologies p. 14
Potential LCD Improvements p. 16
OLEDS – Where Are They Headed? p. 18

Part two Flexible Displays

Editor’s Introduction to Part 2 p. 19
ITRI’s Mission Is to Incubate New Industry p. 20
Bi-stability p. 22
Market Forecast p. 24
A Video Rate Rollable Display p. 26

Symposium Discussion June 15- July 17 2008

Bandwidth Caps & Deep Packet Inspection p. 32

Darkstrand and a DIF for Enterprise Customers? p. 41

The Dynamics of Open Source p. 43

EU Study on Business Case for Fiber Nets p. 48

Optical Network Migration Strategies p. 50

Thoughts on Network Evolution p. 52

Comparing Usage Cases for IP Stacks versus GSM p. 56

“Hell Just Froze Over in the UK” (BT’s Fiber Investment Announcement) p. 60

Executive Summary p. 63