Brookhaven National Lab and the Long Island Forum for Technology have a word of advice for Long Island companies looking for new ideas and technologies: Merwyn.

Merwyn is software initially developed for large companies, universities and research labs, as a kind of corporate matchmaker. They will put their ideas on Merwyn, and smaller companies or investors can check them out and see if they could develop those ideas into working businesses.

Earlier this week, BNL and LIFT rolled out a version of the software program specifically for companies on the Island and in New York State, called the New York Innovation Marketplace. "There's a tremendous wealth of innovative ideas that need to come out of the dark labs and into potential business opportunities for [investors] or companies," said LIFT executive director William Wahlig. The program can be found at

John Steele, manager of growth services at High-tech Rochester, a tech organization helping roll out the program, said there are about 25,000 ideas in the system waiting to be examined. "This is a way of hooking up small businesses" with ideas from big organizations, Steele said.

Walter G. Copan, BNL's managing director of technology commercialization and partnerships, said the new program is similar to one he announced earlier this month that seeks to allow start-up companies to license technologies in the energy field with BNL and other national labs across the country.