"sanity has returned" ?
More like there is no back hander in it for them.
The European Commission has cancelled plans to throw €22m of taxpayers' money at Symbian. In November, Eurocrats threw the doomed OS a lifeline by anointing Symbian as the "Embedded Operating System for Europe", in what was called the Symbeose research project. Real life overtook the decision. Nokia dissolved the Symbian …
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I have problems getting "project funding" for projects such as broadcast video PCIe adapters when I have customers at companies I can invoice in 180 days for 5 times the investment I'm asking for.
The EU "project funding" which is set aside to get businesses started and to fund small projects that will produce jobs and make Europe more competitive in industry and technology does not get to projects like this.
These funds typically employ young "financial people" and "inspiring entrepenuers" who will distribute these funds into projects which will make them valuable assets to companies who will need people like them in the future.
I am not personally in the EU, but in Norway which has funds that are based on the corresponding EU organizations. This year, the government put the main organization of this type on the chopping block and started trimming dead weight.
Most of the money from this organization when into companies who didn't need it to fund projects that were more than well funded enough by the companies that it wouldn't make the slightest difference. In fact, as I'm typing this, I should be working on one of those projects. The companies who receive this money would do the projects anyway and placing this public money into these projects does absolutely nothing positive on any level.
In the past year, Innovation Norway has distributed nearly all of its government supplied "Innovation" money into projects that were self sustaining to begin with. And yet, engineers and inventors were left to go to banks and gamble their family's savings and equity to start businesses because they were unable to receive funding the government tells the people is there for this specific reason.
The #1 reason for this being is, the people in charge of distributing the money want to show as close to a perfect track record in their investments, effectively making them far more valuable to banks and investment houses as well as other corporations who will hire them under terms that will be far more profitable to them.
If you think I'm a conspiracy theorist, I suspect there is some of that in there as well. But, go to one of these organizations and ask to talk with someone about getting a project funded. They're ALL under 30 and they're ALL very quick to talk about their great successes and they're ALL very quick to tell you how they hand out tons of money every year but if you ask them to list any success stories or failures including small inventors and engineers.... they come up blank. Try it
Back before the dot-com bubble collapsed, I was seeking PhD funding to research some ideas for efficient photorealistic rendering. I never got it (not that I'm currently looking, unless anyone's about to offer...), and now friends in academia complain that they can't get funding for students. Every time money is thrown at a group of buzz words or getting someone to research clear nonsense, I wonder why it's hard to get some for something that might actually improve a useful field. There's a difference between far-out research in, say, the bounds of mathematics and theoretical physics (these things eventually tend to be useful) and in satisfying a government quota for giving people bits of paper.
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