The Radiance of the Chip Island: TSMC, Semiconductors, the Chip War, and My 30 Years of Journalism


Category : Technology
Pages : 448
Publication : Good Morning Press, Jul. 1 2023
Publication : Paperback
Contact : Mengying


Rights Sold: Japanese, Korean


The significance of the chip supply chain in global power competition can no longer be overlooked. Even if you believe the ongoing global chip war holds little relevance for you, there is still an island that is deeply intertwined with your tech-driven lives. Boasting 70 percent of the world's semiconductor manufacturing capacity and 90 percent of the most advanced ones, this island is none other than Taiwan, home to a company known as TSMC. Transforming from a small semiconductor foundry to a global leader in semiconductor manufacturing, today, TSMC's every move carries significant implications for global power dynamics and the world economy.


For three decades, Taiwanese journalist Lin Hong-wen has borne witness to the remarkable growth trajectory of Taiwan's semiconductor industry. In this captivating book, Lin draws upon his extensive archive of interviews and commentaries to provide firsthand insights into the success story of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), the management philosophy of its leaders, the company’s competitive strategies, and its leadership transition. Set against the backdrop of geopolitical tensions, Lin also delves into TSMC's investments in the United States and Japan, the competitive landscape of the global semiconductor industry, and the pivotal role that Taiwan plays in the world’s semiconductor value chain.


Lin possesses a distinctive viewpoint within Taiwan’s semiconductor industry that equips him to guide readers in understanding its past, present, and future. He also reflects on why TSMC has become so formidable, how Taiwan's semiconductor industry has persevered and thrived through adversity, and the challenges it currently faces. Through the book, the author shares his front-row perspective with readers, enabling them to feel as though they are on the front lines of the chip war, journeying alongside the key figures and living through the events.


Table of Contents:


Forword   The TSMC When I Was 19

                Steve Ho, Taiwan internet serial entrepreneur known as the father of Taiwan’s e-commerce

Forword   The TSMC Way: a Successful Model that Creates a Taiwan Miracle

                Dr. Quincy Lin, former TSMC Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer

Forword   TSMC's Winning Formula: Building a Coexistent and Prosperous Ecosystem

                Stan Shih, co-founder of Acer Inc. & former board member of TSMC

Forword   A Journal that Follows the Development of a Corporate Giant

            Nojima Tsuyoshi, Japanese journalist & author specializing in the Greater China region

Forword   Putting the Customer First: Learning from the Past to Guide the Future

                Sega Cheng, co-founder & CEO of iKala, a leading AI transformation solutions provider

Forword   Reporting with Responsibility and Drawing Informed Conclusions

Dr. Chiang Shang-Yi, Chief Strategy Officer for Semiconductor at Foxconn & former joint Chief Operating Officer at TSMC


Preface      Where Does It Go from Here for a Company with Unhidden Radiance

Introduction  An Island that Radiates


Part I       Business Blueprint and Strategy

Dad Told Me to Work at TSMC Because It Sounded Like a Government Job

Morris Chang: It's Called 'Silicon Casting,' Not Semiconductor Foundry

Making the Right Choice at Every Stage to Ensure Seamless Transition to the Next One

The Unsung Heroes at TSMC

To Achieve Tremendous Profits, Turn the Manufacturing Business into a Service

The Rise of TSMC and UMC: The Twin Towers in the Semiconductor Foundry Sector

M&A Wars on the Chip Island: TSMC Completed Mergers with TASMC and WSMC

Tough Times Ahead for SMIC, No Threat to TSMC

Samsung is Formidable, but Not a Worthy Competitor

Why Has the DRAM Industry Lost its Luster?

TSMC Grand Alliance: Building a Circle of Winners

Morris Chang’s Determined Return as CEO Took the Company to New Heights

Retaining All Talent

Yet Another Miraculous Achievement for TSMC?

Has TSMC’s Next Generation of Leadership Emerged?


Part II      Business Operation and Management

Everyone Carries a Trace of Morris Chang

Meetings Are Meaningful Only When They Are Turned into Actions

Witnessing the Supply Chain Resilience of Taiwan's Semiconductor Industry

Leading in Every Aspect Except Price, Leaving Competitors in the Dust

When He Banged his Smoking Pipe, Tore Up Reports, and Shouted ‘Get Out!’

When SMIC Infringed Patent Rights, How TSMC Strategically Forged Ahead to Win

Vigilantly Guarding Against Talent Poaching and Trade Secret Leaks

On the Eve before Board Meetings: Steaks and Fine Wine at the Dinner

TSMC Goes to America: How Do Taiwanese Manage Americans?

Not Just Innovating Technology, but Investing in Innovative Technology

Long Hours, Poor Software, and Minimal Investment in Employees


Part III    Corporate Culture and DNA

The Little Paper Clip on the Guest Registration Book

An International Enterprise from Day One

Looking at the Long-Term: Accelerating Depreciation and Amortization in Five Years

Semiconductor Foundry: Why Taiwan Leads Globally

Keeping a Low Profile Despite Being Ultra-Rich

Competition is What Keeps You Running

An Employee Profit Sharing and Stock Ownership Scheme with Taiwanese Characteristics

Succession Based on Merit, Not Connections

Top Talent on Mundane Tasks?

Diligence and Professionalism: Striving for Excellence in Everything


Part IV     R&D and Technology Leadership

A Stunning and Shattering Move

The Legendary Six Knights of TSMC R&D, Now Only Four Remaining

Facing Off Against Two 800-Pound Gorillas: The Unrelenting ‘Nighthawk Troop’

Building Another Moat with 7-Nanometer Technology

A Vast Intellectual Property Vault

Implementing Knowledge Management to Become a Learning Organization

The COVID-19 Pandemic, Ukraine-Russia Conflict, and the Disruptions and Reshuffling of Supply Chains

A Promising Technology to Break Through Moore’s Law

The New Ecosystem of Taiwan's IC Design Services and IP Industry

Looking to the Next 20 Years from Three Perspectives

First-Rate Universities Training Operators for TSMC?

Taiwan’s Semiconductor Industry Faces Unprecedented Talent Shortage

The Endgame between TSMC and Samsung

Early Strategic Positioning for Emerging Memories


Part V      Geopolitics

Sanctioning China Doesn't Necessarily Mean the U.S. Should Return to Semiconductor Manufacturing

Where Are the Chips Made?

U.S. IC Design Industry and China's Vast Market

The Catfish Effect  and the Clustering Effect

From Made in Taiwan to Made by Taiwan

Why Go to the U.S.? It's All About the Customers!

Don't Just Focus on the United States: Investing in Japan Is the Real Key

TSMC's JASM Marks a New Chapter for Taiwan-Japan Alliance

What’s Next for Taiwan-Japan Semiconductor Collaboration?

Why Did Japan's Semiconductor Industry Decline?

Is TSMC the Next Toshiba, Heading to a Downfall?

Has the U.S.-China Chip War Defeated Ren Zhengfei?

What Are We Really Fighting For? Who Are We Fighting For?

Is Taiwan's Semiconductor Industry Truly Number One in the World?


Conclusion       Cherishing the Hard-Earned Fruit


Lin Hong-wen is a seasoned journalist with a focus on the technology and biotechnology sectors in Taiwan. His extensive experience has cultivated a keen interest in areas such as industrial development, investment trends, corporate governance, and national competitiveness. Presently, Lin is a radio host on UniFM96.7 and a contributing columnist for publications including Business Week, Business Next, SRMEDIA, and CIO IT Manager. He also has a track record of authoring several books that provide valuable insights into tech companies and industry leaders, shedding light on their management philosophies and competitive strategies. Beyond his work in journalism and writing, Lin has contributed his expertise by serving on the Boards of Directors for various companies and non-profit organizations.

The Radiance of the Chip Island: TSMC, Semiconductors, the Chip War, and My 30 Years of Journalism

The Radiance of the Chip Island: TSMC, Semiconductors, the Chip War, and My 30 Years of Journalism


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