It was an interesting contrast in the opening hours of Computex Taipei to see Taiwan's political and business leaders praise Stan Shih for his founding of the local personal computer industry, only to be followed by Mr Shih himself saying that it was time to move beyond the PC. The opening ceremony for the world's second-largest IT show played out a lot of the big-picture issues that Computex, as a show, and Taiwan, as a production base, are now having to deal with. According to local legend, it was Mr Shih who came up with the idea and the name for Computex when he was chairman of the Taipei Computer Association 20 years ago. The show has maintained its name, but the name itself is slowly becoming redundant. Last Tuesday's opening ceremony was full of praise for Mr Shih, chairman and chief executive of Acer and the godfather of Taiwan's PC industry. 'Without his contribution, there'd be no IT industry in Taiwan,' Taipei Computer Association chairman Frank Huang said. While Computex and the industry have changed, so too has Acer. In fact it's hard to know which is the chicken and which is the egg. In the past five years alone, Mr Shih has forced his company's manufacturing, branding and consumer electronics arms - Wistron, Acer and BenQ - to divorce, and various other subsidiaries are also becoming independent. It's all in a bid to inject some new life into an industry that has run out of ideas. 'We need to go from duplication-driven to innovation-driven,' said Lin Hsin-I, former economics minister and now senior adviser to the Taiwanese president, in his speech which included vast praise of Mr Shih. That's precisely what Mr Shih is trying to do, but it's not easy. Mindsets have to change and big investments have to be made. 'In the past we were technology-driven, but now we are consumer driven ... and [consumers] want an experience that is full and whole and that is not fragmented,' said Mr Shih. The experience he is talking about is one that that is closer to what consumers get out of electronics devices such as TVs and CD and DVD players. It's an experience that the Japanese consumer electronics industry has been perfecting for decades, but which PCs have only just started to perfect. 'In the past, the consumer electronics component industry has been dominated by Japanese companies, so the Japanese dominated the consumer electronics industry,' said Mr Shih. Last week there were many signs that the Taiwanese are able to get in on the act. Wireless stereos, flat-screen TVs, smartphones and MP3 players are being made by the Taiwanese, and many by those same companies that are heavily involved in the PC industry. It's all part of what everyone is dubbing the 'digital home', a development in which even Microsoft and Intel want to be involved. As Mr Shih embarks on his final year (he has pledged to retire next year), he seems to have a clear mission about what he wants to leave behind. 'If we want to become a supplier of goods to digital homes, we need global brands.' It won't happen in the next year but, by the time he steps down, Mr Shih will be hoping that dream is not too distant.