Transmeta names ex-MIPS, RISC exec as new CEO
January 16, 2007 – Transmeta Corp. has appointed Lester Crudele as president and CEO, replacing Arthur Swift. Crudele has been a director since June 2005 and a management consultant to the company since October 2006.
“Les brings to Transmeta his proven leadership ability, technological expertise, extensive operational management experience, and entrepreneurial energy,” said Transmeta chairman Murray Goldman, in a statement.
Crudele was an early member of the leadership team at MIPS Computer Systems, and was chief architect for several Motorola MC 68000-series microprocessors, becoming VP and GM of Motorola’s RISC microprocessor division from 1991-1997. He also is a former VP and GM of Compaq’s workstation products division, and was president and CEO of Banderacom, a privately held InfiniBand semiconductor company, from 2000 to 2002. Most recently he served as CO of fabless firm Quickfilter Technologies.
Crudele takes over as Transmeta fights with Intel over alleged patent infringement of power-efficiency technologies.
Last October, Transmeta requested an injunction against Intel’s continuing sales of Pentium III, Pentium 4, Pentium M, and Core and Core 2 Duo processors, which incorporate patented Transmeta technologies, and sought monetary damages including royalties. Several media reports noted that those Intel products have generated more than $100 billion in revenue to date.
One of the patents at issue reportedly covers “adaptive power control,” which changes the speed of a microprocessor on the fly to adapt to usage and power needs, and for which Transmeta received a patent in August 2000. A previous report by the San Jose Mercury News noted that John O’Hara Horsley, EVP and general counsel at Transmeta, indicated that Intel’s SpeedStep technology, which throttles back a computer’s performance to conserve power, appears to violate that patent.
Just last week, though, Intel filed a countersuit, denying any patent infringement on its part, and filing its own infringement claims against Transmeta regarding six of its own patents covering chip features, plus another one concerning an “apparatus for controlling power usage,” noted the SJMN. Intel is also seeking triple damages because it says Transmeta willfully infringed the patents, noted TheStreet.com.