Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: InterDigital (Nasdaq: IDCC) popped 17% in intraday trading today. The strength in bids for Nortel's patents was surprising and bodes well for the value of InterDigital's patent portfolio.

So what: Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT), Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM), Sony (NYSE: SNE), EMC (NYSE: EMC), Ericsson (Nasdaq: ERIC), and other companies formed a consortium that offered a stunning $4.5 billion for Nortel's patents. That's five times Google's opening bid.

Now what: InterDigital makes money from patent licensing. It owns 8,800 U.S. and foreign patents, and has nearly 10,000 patent applications pending, primarily related to wireless communications. The strong demand and high bids for Nortel's communications patents are shedding new light on the earnings potential of InterDigital's intellectual property. Even after today's pop in the stock, it is trading at a P/E ratio of only 13.6 times.

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Fool contributor Cindy Johnson owns shares of IDCC. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.