hi! Well, the reason i didn't cite which company the engineers work for is that it's actually unclear to me too. The CIB report first cites them as Intel engineers and then claims they work for Intel partners. Intel would neither confirm or deny. So I'm afraid I'm as confused as you are on the true corporate affiliations of these guys.
Although I have never even thought about anything like this, I have to say that the corporate behavior of Microsoft and Intel do not exactly inspire one to the highest standards of ethics.
Both of them have been repeatedly fined for predatory behavior and other such antics. MS should have been forced to split as was the original punishment; I can't help wondering how they got out of that.
Both of them have most likely caused far more damage to other companies than what their punishment was, and after said companies were destroyed, the said punishment is little more than symbolic.
That said, there is no excuse for the employees behavior, however, one can make the argument that it is karma.
CommonSense, yes, I suppose that's what I'm suggesting. If you've read my posts, you'll know that I'm not above sarcasm and a certain (sometimes excessive) disdain for "revealed truths", but basically, yes: if we as a profession do not act in an upright manner, do not take the high road, then we can't really expect anyone to do so. I suppose this sounds banal to some people, but we see examples of IP theft right, left and center. So the issue isn't a non-starter.
The argument that grinds me is along these lines: that Intel (or Microsoft, or whoever) is so wealthy that they could never miss what I've taken (or borrowed...). That's nonsense, of course, unless the object is a pencil or paperclip or a meaningless commodity item. Sample chips, IP, etc. are a different story altogether. Where do you draw the line? I'm not sure in general, but I know theft when I see it. A friend has a pen marked "Boeing"? I laugh. A friend has a 'scope marked "Boeing"? That's very disturbing. For our common good, honesty may or may not be the best policy, but it is the most sane policy.
Your love to Intel is very clear. You cleverly mention "Intel engineers were caught" in the summary on the main page of EETimes, but when you read the article, it's engineers from some other company were caught(which you interestingly dont mention the company name). Good job. Kudos to EETimes for having such good journalists like you and Rick and Dillon.
Speedo68, just out of curiosity: if you know an item is stolen, why do you have no qualms about buying it? If I knew someone stole your laptop, should I have no qualms about buying it?
One might argue that a certain amount of Intel's IP is being stolen and resold. As engineers, our main product is often IP. If we do not honor other people's property rights to their IP, why should they honor ours?
So, company I work at makes PC components. We get roughly 200~500 Engineering Example (ES) Intel CPUs. And you are working on 3 or 4 different types of Intel CPUs, SB/SB-E/IB/Xeon. So maybe up to 2~3k chips total at a decent size facility in Taiwan/China.
After weeks of developemental work, I am tasked to dispose of said CPUs. So, instead of destroying, I sell them on Ebay for $250~600 each.
Not worth it, but seen it happen countless times. Any good PC Builder know's how/where this EN CPUs come about. I really have no qualms buying or running one if I can get one. But, it's a risk you take when you illegally sell an item that does not belong to you.