January 19, 2017 | Written by: Ryan Bares
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IBM has focused on innovation since the company began over a century ago, cultivating some of the world’s most influential Master Inventors along the way. In fact, IBM received a record-breaking 8,000+ US patents in 2016 covering a diverse range of inventions. Each year, IBM Systems bestows the title of Master Inventor to those IBMers who add significant value to the company’s Intellectual Property (IP) portfolio. This global technical community offers a highly distinctive recognition.
In the Making has a mission to inspire the big IT breakthroughs of today and tomorrow. Who better to feature on the blog than our most recent IBM Systems innovators, who are at the forefront of IT breakthroughs in their chosen field? I asked four IBM Systems Master Inventors several questions to get a better understanding of their background, their inventions and what it means to receive this recognition. Let me introduce you to Chris, Anil, Yong and Charles.
Chris Poole, Software Engineer
Chris Poole has been at IBM for almost five years. He mentors several patent groups, enjoying his role as teacher. “By being a Master Inventor, I’m more easily identified as someone willing to help others.”
To Chris, the Master Inventors program is two things: First, a system to bring recognition to the IP-related work IBMers have been a part of. The other is “a way to highlight yourself to others so they know who to approach for help.”
Chris’ first issued patent concerns a just-in-time (JIT) compiler within the Java virtual machine (JVM), and its inlining abilities. The JIT records what it’s doing in an optimized way so a performance analyst can later use the data to more accurately understand the state of the system.
Some of Chris’ other patents cover a range from technologies to optimize the (JVM) and systems within it. His other patents include a mobile device interface and services for buses and messaging areas.
Anil Lingambudi, Memory Qualification Lead, Power and OpenPOWER
Anil Lingambudi has been at IBM for almost 11 years and describes being a Master Inventor as “a remarkable journey spanning over a decade of inventing at IBM.”
Anil related the patent journey to raising a child. He says you begin with an idea, or a baby, and progress to the toddler phase, when you disclose your idea. Then you file the idea — that’s the boy stage — and move to the plateaus, which encompass graduate and post-graduate work in this scenario. Becoming a Master Inventor is the “PhD” for all innovations.
Anil has 17 patents filed at United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), of which 12 patents are issued and 17 more published in IP.com. His innovations “are targeted towards enhancing the memory features, performance and the [reliability, availability and serviceability] RAS features of IBM servers that are released to market.” He’s currently focusing on next-generation memory.
Yong Zheng, Senior Software Engineer
Yong Zheng is a Master Inventor who has been with IBM over 10 years and has patents in both the US and China. His current focus is big data analytics over IBM Spectrum Scale. Yong describes the IBM Master Inventors program as “not only about patents, but also innovation in our products, writing these innovations down as patents to protect IBM’s intellectual property and coaching other junior members in disclosure to inspire them and help them to figure out the novelty points in their ideas.”
Yong says, “I have some patents on technologies to improve the debugging efficiency in debugger, some patents to provide just-in-time debugging for mix-code applications and some patents about distributed file system and big data analytics. My recent patents are to solve the problems of running Hadoop-like applications inside Docker.”
Charles Arvin, Senior Engineer, Hardware Packaging Development
Charles Arvin submitted his first patent filing while attending graduate school and interning at IBM. Charles describes the Master Inventors program as a way to “showcase to those around us that there are many opportunities to foster and implement ideas across many divisions and companies.”
His first grouping of inventions created a “robust, defect-free and the lowest cost, lead-free interconnect in the industry for wafer level bumping.” When asked about what’s next for him and his innovation career, Charles said he will be focusing on moving his current qualified patents through the invention stage. His goal is to improve the next generation of servers.
You’ll be hearing more from these IT innovators and their colleagues in the future. In the meantime, you can connect with them on social media:
Learn more about what IBM Master Inventors are working on, as well as patents and innovation dominance by IBM over the past century.