"Intel co-founder and former CEO Andy Grove gave quite a speech this weekend at the National Inventors Hall of Fame, where he explained how patents are looking increasingly similar to the sort of financial derivatives that have brought down today's economy: "The true value of an invention is its usefulness to the public. Patents themselves have become products. They're instruments of investment traded on a separate market, often by speculators motivated by the highest financial return on their investment…. The patent product brings financial derivatives to mind. Derivatives have a complex relationship with an underlying asset. While there's nothing wrong with them in principle, their unfettered use has damaged the financial services industry and possibly the entire economy." "