U. Wisconsin group sues Intel over chip patents

Feb. 8, 2008 – The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, a private nonprofit corporation that supports, funds, and licenses the university’s research, has filed suit against Intel over patents that facilitate execution of instructions before others are completed — capabilities it says are being “aggressively marketed” as a feature of Intel’s new Core 2 Duo chips.

The complaint centers on US patent No. 5,781,752 (1998) “Table Based Data Speculation Circuit for Parallel Processing Computer,” described by the group as a data speculation circuit “that facilitates the advanced execution of instructions before other instructions on which they may be data dependent, resulting in improved execution efficiency and speed.” (News.com’s Tom Krazit surmises that this refers to Intel’s “Wide Dynamic Execution” functionality.)

The group claims that researchers at U. Wisc/Madison contacted Intel repeatedly about the technology since 2001. Engadget reports that Intel has been in talks with U.Wisc for a year but hasn’t examined this complaint.

WARF is seeking unspecified compensation (including legal fees) and an injunction against sales of the products.


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