23 November 2011

Latest IP Yorkshire Newsletter

The latest IP Yorkshire newsletter is out with articles on
  • the LEP Summit in Leeds on 9 Sept 2011
  • FabLabs for Yorkshire
  • injunctions against ISPs
  • IP law in the Gulf
  • Gumption
  • guidance for web designers
  • inventors, and
  • IP dispute resolution.
Earlier issues of the newsletter are archived. You can download them by clicking the links to the sidebar.

"Cost Effective Product Development" Leeds Inventors Group: 16 Nov 2011

Alex Smith's talk to Leeds Inventors Group "Cost Effective Product Development" on 16 Nov 2011 was one of the best presentations we have ever had. Alex is a product designer, a director of Trig Creative of Horsforth near Leeds and a visiting lecturer of Huddersfield and Leeds Met Universities.His talk explored the design process, getting a product to market, finding funding and a whole lot more. He also gave examples of some of his work. You will find his slides below.
If you want to contact Alex he is at
TRIG Creative Ltd
Dale House, 64 Fink Hill,
Horsforth, Leeds,
LS18 4DH

Telephone: +44 (0) 113 258 0110

email: design@trigcreative.com
View more presentations from Jane Lambert

15 November 2011

Gumption Centres at Leeds City Varieties

Gumption Centres are a set of serviced offices in the centre of Bradford started and run by my good friends David Robertson Brown and John Sims nearly 5 years ago. Just under 2 years ago David and John branched out into VoIP and virtual office services with GB Offices. Yesterday, I checked out their latest venture which is meeting room accommodation at Leeds City Varieties.

Leeds City Varieties is one of our few surviving and thriving music halls (not unlike Vaudeville in the USA) and its auditorium is one of the most beautiful theatres anywhere. For many years it was the venue for the BBC varieties show "The Good Old Days" where members of the audience wore period costume.

My late mother, who came from Bramhope, one of the posher Leeds suburbs, would have been horrified by my visiting the Varieties because it was no place for a lady when she was a girl. As you can see from the photo, times have changed. I was given a conducted tour by the centre manager. I photographed her in Gumption's space at the Centre.

Another lady I met at the Centre, was Gaynor Beckett, an employment law and litigation consultant. Gaynor, who qualified as a solicitor and worked for trade unions and in local government, offers practical advice on employment law. Essentially keeping folk out of trouble and legal expenses down. As the legal services industry is undergoing changes comparable to those that revolutionized the financial services industry in the 1980s I am sure she iwill do very well indeed.

Why Gumption Centres? When I moved to the Huddersfield Media Centre at the end of 2004 I arranged an exhibition and conference on invention and innovation at the Media Centre and the University called "Brass from Gumption" on 18 Feb 2005. It was a triumph with speakers of the calibre of Trevor Baylis and Lawrence Smith Higgins of the IPO and visitors from all over England. David helped me arrange the event. After the conference he asked me whether he could use the name for his business which I was glad to let him do so. He and John helped me over the years by hosting conferences and seminars and other services and I have assisted them with advice and drafting in return.

9 November 2011

A FabLab for Keighley?

"FabLab" is an abbreviation for fabrication laboratory. It is described in Wikipedia as "a small-scale workshop offering (personal) digital fabrication." It is typically equipped with a range of computer controlled tools that cover several different length scales and various materials, with the aim of making "almost anything". There are FabLabs across the world from Southern Ghana to Northern Norway including one in Manchester that I mentioned in my IP North West blog yesterday ("FabLab Manchester: Introduction to Intellectual Property" IP North West 8 Nov 2011).

Jane Keats gave a presentation that focused on FabLabs entitled "Factories of the Future" to Leeds and Sheffield inventors clubs on 21 Sept and 3 Oct 2011 (see "Jane Keats on 'Factories of the Future'" in my Inventors Club blog of 7 Nov 2011 and "LIG 21st Sept 11 Fablabs - Factories of the Future? Jane Keats" in the Leeds inventors Group blog). Also, the Keighley News reported that a mobile FabLab would be set up in Keighley on 8 Sept 2011 to coincide with the British Science Festival (see "Chance to go and explore Universe", Keighley News 8 Sept 2011).

In her talk Jane mentioned the possibility of a permanent FabLab in Keighley there are at last signs that that may be happening. Much of the equipment for the Keighley site was purchased some months ago and is now being stored at FabLab Manchester. Now the post of CEO for the "Centre for Manufacturing Excellence" at an annual salary of £45,000. The job advertisement notes that:

"The CME will also operate a Fab Lab. A Fab Lab is a digital fabrication laboratory, originating from MIT in the States around ten years ago to “empower individuals rather than institutions to be able to make almost anything”.Fab Labs are a facility for rapid prototyping and assistance with product development. Labs also provide educational and training workshops for schools, colleges and open access to the community.

The CEO on appointment will initially establish a smooth and effectively operating Fab Lab, exploiting different markets to generate revenue to sustain the Fab Lab operations.The Fab Lab will attract commercial clients, sole inventors, schools, colleges and a diverse community."
I drew these developments to the attention of Councillor Mehboob Khan, leader of Kirklees metropolitan borough council and deputy chair of the Leeds City Region local enterprise partnership at the LEP Summit in September. Councillor David Ridgway, another Kirklees Councillor has also offered his support.

The job description for the Keighley FabLab stipulates that the successful candidate will have "an understanding of intellectual property rights". That is to be welcomed though he or she and the interview panel should be aware that additive manufacturing technologies present particularly complex. As a starter, however, they would do worse than begin with the presentations that patent agent Tom Hutchinson, specialist solicitor Michael Sandys and I gave to FabLab Manchester on 12 Oct 2011.
If anybody has any questions or comments, he or she can contact me through my contact form, Facebook, Linkedin, Xing or twitter or call me on 0113 320 3232.