Investor Upset That Transmeta Isn't Solely Focused On Suing Companies For Patent Infringement

from the focus,-people,-focus! dept

Back in 2006, we noted that hyped-up Transmeta, the semiconductor startup that Linus Torvalds worked at for a while, had pretty much failed in the marketplace and was making a last ditch effort to sue companies for patent infringement. It was a pattern we had seen over and over again: a company that can't actually compete in the marketplace responds to its own misfortune by trying to drag down the company that did succeed, using patent infringement claims as the anchor. However, it appears that an investor in Transmeta is now upset that the company didn't take this "sue everyone who did a better job than us" strategy far enough. Specifically, Transmeta settled with Intel a few months after filing a patent infringement lawsuit, and the investor is upset that the company didn't fight it out for a higher return. So, now, he's hoping to buy out the rest of the firm, shut down the parts that are actually doing something and producing value, and instead just turn the whole company into a patent lawsuit machine. Just as Thomas Jefferson originally envisioned.
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Filed Under: patents
Companies: transmeta


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  1. identicon
    Joe, 7 Feb 2008 @ 8:35pm

    Transmeta is a bad example

    Transmeta is an example of a company which used patents to protect their inventions. They used trade secrets before launch and patented their core technology, specifically their clock reduction / power saving technology.

    Intel did their best to copy the improvements as soon as the Transmeta chip was launched and used it's near monopoly power to push Transmeta nearly out of business.

    So to say that Transmeta "just couldn't compete" is doing a disservice. They pretty much invented the flexible power chip, and their tech was stolen.

    I know you're not a big believer in patents in general, but this is a case of real engineering, real invention, and a lot of capital spent trying to shake up the system. Transmeta should be the poster child for the non-patent troll; the one you point out when people patent things and then never bring it to market.

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