I have to admit that over the last few months I have been pretty impressed by the folks I am dealing with in Tech transfer offices. Almost 100% of them (can't think of an exception right now, but I am sure there is one) have been really good. Today I was talking to a guy at a Boston area university and we talked for about 1 1/2 hours about the technology they have going on, our needs, some ideas he had based on talking to researchers, etc... It was a great conversation. Granted both of us are "lapsed" scientists, in that we both elected to bail out of the lab, but it was still a great conversation. I would like to think he learned something about what our business wants, and I can conclusivly say that I learned a lot about what they are doing and where they are headed with a bunch of stuff.
He was a bit odd, in that he works in a translation research setting and not a classic tech transfer office, so that may be the difference. BUT - it doesn't change that it was a great conversation. I am used to really only getting that level of science from the business people when I am dealing with industry folks.
On other fronts, I have become more impressed with the general tech transfer people. It seems, and who knows if this is conscios effort on their part or not, that they are focussed on some things they think will work and for those selected ones they are very focussed on moving things ahead.
There are still some, and the one that leaps to mind is at a top top tier school, who are a bit dense at valuing technology. I will still not pay $1M for a research reagent technology that I have to develop if you won't give me an exclusive. It just won't happen. I am uncertain as to why you even think you will be taken seriously when you propose that. Please don't get mad at you when my counter proposal sheds, essentially, all the zero's.
However, the web sites. They still are horrid messes. I continue not to understand why people don't put effort in to this. I imagine I will be wondering this to the end of my days. This is a low effort way to find people that you don't even know are interested. I guess, given the rest you do, that I don't understand why you WOULDNT do it. If all else fails, just start a free blog here on blogger and post them as they come in. Even that would be better than your regional sites, your hidden university sites, and you confusing mish-mash of sites linking together institutes that I have never heard of but aren't included in the university site in whose buildings you are located and to whom you link yourselves (in other ways) as closely as you can.
So - Summary - People Good, web sites - Bad.
Web sites are cheaper than people, so I don't understand!