Sustainability, Export Controls, and TSMC.

G. Dan Hutcheson
G. Dan Hutcheson
The Chip Insider®

Sustainability: more than just a nice thing to do. As I have admitted before, I am not a big fan of the topic, because there is no product there. Given my Maxim, “Problems are markets and solutions are products,” There is definitely a problem, but where’s the market? Customers must be willing to pay for solution, right? And where’s the problem an Intel or Applied Materials can develop into a product? Do they enter the solar panel market? I think not. In fact, that’s a silly response to a very difficult problem.

In Milton Friedman’s seminal 1970 column in the New York Times on the social responsibility of business, he posited it was the corporation’s job to “engage in open and free competition without deception or fraud” while, “staying within the rules of the game.” In other words, sustainability is best resolved when government sets the rules of the game. We see this and ESG (Environment, Safety, and Government). But governments have been notably out to lunch when it comes to sustainability. There is an emerging private-product solution upending the apple cart …

Happenings, Comments, Questions & Answers: Technology Export Controls: Do they work? (23 Feb 2023) Three interesting questions that came out of this issue are 1) if we have these agreements, why do we have all these bilateral negotiations going on and new groups like the “Chip 4” group? 2) If the risk is losing market positions and the technology with them, why is the U.S. government pursuing them? 3) Is there not too much American arrogance and profit motive thinking in the belief that China can’t develop its own chip supply chain or it won’t because of poor yield with Chinese equipment?…

Is TSMC abandoning Taiwan? Dan, any comments on Taiwan’s political kerfuffle about TSMC’s overseas fab investments being an abandonment of the country? ...

Maxims: Problems are markets and solutions are products. Marketing pros love to use the word ‘solution’ as a synonym for ‘product.’ It sounds so much better when you can provide a solution, rather than have a product to sell. Meanwhile they avoid using the word ‘problem,’ because customers hate this…

“Strategy requires a sense of the whole that reveals the significance of respective parts.”– John Lewis Gaddis

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