Intergraph, AMD reach Clipper patent settlement

Having settled its patent dispute with Intel, Intergraph announced Monday it has also settled a patent lawsuit with Intel rival Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) for a one-time licensing fee of US$10 million plus additional payments.

AMD now owes Intergraph $10 million by May 7 in order to license Intergraph's Clipper technology. Clipper is the code name for a processor developed in the 1980s that used a unique memory cache design, according to Intergraph's Web page.

In January, AMD sought a declaratory judgment against Intergraph, asking a judge to conclude that Intergraph's Clipper patents were invalid, or that AMD's chips did not infringe upon those patents. The Clipper technology was licensed by Intel in 2002 after a patent lawsuit, and AMD had thought it was about to be sued for infringement when it asked for judgment.

Now however, AMD has agreed to make additional payments to Intergraph of 2 percent of AMD's Computation Products Group's pretax operating profits. The additional payments are capped at $5 million per year for the 2005, 2006 and 2007 calendar years. The Computation Products Group is responsible for the manufacture and sale of AMD's microprocessors.

Intergraph has taken in a great deal of revenue from its Intellectual Property and Licensing Division over the past few years, mainly from Intel. The two companies settled a dispute over the use of Intergraph's parallel instruction computing (PIC) technology in Intel's Itanium server processor earlier this year. Intel agreed to pay Intergraph $225 million to end the dispute and license the PIC technology.

Texas Instruments has also settled litigation with Intergraph related to the PIC patents.

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