Intergraph Sues Dell, HP, Gateway Over Patents

from the wait-a-second... dept

Yet another silly patent story today. It seems that Intergraph is getting a little greedy with their patents. After settling with Intel over their patents on technology used in Pentium chips, they’re now going to sue Dell, HP, Gateway for using Pentium chips in their computers. I don’t see how they have any claim over those computer makers, since they’re simply using the chips that Intel sold them. The patent problem is Intel’s, and they’ve already settled. This is like an attempt to get paid twice for the patents.

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Comments on “Intergraph Sues Dell, HP, Gateway Over Patents”

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1 Comment
Kevin says:

Weird Patent Law Provisions

A lot of people don’t realize that according to U.S. patent law that “whoever without authority makes, uses, offers to sell, or sells any patented invention,…(snip)…infringes the patent.” (35 US Code, Part III, Chapter 28). In fact purchasers of items that infringe a patent can be sued and held liable for damages. This is not new.
There is a special case for non-commercial consumers who purchased an infringing item in good faith. According to the UCC (Uniform Commercial Code), purchasers who meet the above definition must be indemnified by the manufacturer and/or the entity that sold them the item. The consumer can still be sued, but the seller must make good any damage done to the consumer, including legal fees.
In the case of Hp, Dell, etc., Intergraph probably has a very strong case, especially since Intel lost (and lost rather badly at that). Now whether or not Intergraph can show that they deserve any damages, after they have already collected a kings ransom from Intel, is another question.
While the whole patent system has some serious faults, this definition of infringement and who is liable to whom, is no more illogical than the rest of our federal civil system.
Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer (thank God for small favors) and this is not legal advice, just observations from someone who has been on both sides of this fence.
Oh, and by the way, if you will read the first sentence of Title 35 again, you will see that there is no exception for people to make or use patents for their own use. The Urban Legend that ‘it’s OK to use a patent as long as I don’t sell it’ is absolutely wrong and just that, an Urban Legend. If you make it or use it (the patented invention), you are infringing!

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