Court rules Intel has no license for Clipper patent

Court rules Intel has no license for Clipper patent

Intergraph Corp. won a round in its legal wrangle with Intel Corp. Federal district Judge Edwin Nelson ruled Intel does not have a valid license to use Intergraph's decade-old Clipper RISC caching circuitry in the Pentium architecture.

The ruling, in response to an Intel motion for summary judgment, eliminated a defense the chip giant had planned to use in a suit for anticompetitive behavior brought by Intergraph of Huntsville, Ala., in 1997.

'We're concerned about the broader implications of summary judgment, and, as a result, we plan to pursue a possible appeal,' Intel spokesman Chuck Mulloy said.

He said the long-term impact is worrisome because of Intel's many cross-licensing agreements.

Here's the bill

If Intergraph wins, Intel might have to pay it royalties on every Pentium ever sold. Intel claimed it had rights to the patented technology through a longstanding National Semiconductor Corp. cross-license.

But Nelson ruled the patents belonged to a part of Fairchild Semiconductor that was sold in 1987 to Intergraph by a previous owner, Schlumberger Ltd.

Intergraph chief executive officer James Meadlock said the ruling means Intel 'does not have a license to use the Clipper patent. It does not say Intel is using the technology.' That will be decided next year, he said.


  • Records management: Look beyond the NARA mandates

    Records management is about to get harder

    New collaboration technologies ramped up in the wake of the pandemic have introduced some new challenges.

  • puzzled employee (fizkes/

    Phish Scale: Weighing the threat from email scammers

    The National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Phish Scale quantifies characteristics of phishing emails that are likely to trick users.

Stay Connected

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.