MicroUnity sues Intel, Dell over patents

MicroUnity Systems Engineering has filed a lawsuit against Dell and Intel, alleging infringement of seven of its multimedia processing and computer architecture patents, it said last week.

The lawsuit, filed Friday in the U.S. District Court in Marshall, Texas, alleges that core features of Dell's computer systems and Intel's microprocessors infringe the patents. Infringing features include hyperthreading features in Intel's latest microprocessors and Dell's latest computer systems, and the Streaming SIMD (Single Instruction Multiple Data) Extension (SSE) and SSE2 multimedia extensions to Intel microprocessors, MicroUnity said.

"We think the suit is without merit, and we plan to defend ourselves vigorously," Intel spokesman Chunk Malloy said. A Dell spokesman said his company does not comment on pending litigation.

MicroUnity was set up in 1988. One of the founders, Chief Executive Officer John Moussouris, was previously co-founder of MIPS Computer Systems Inc., now known as MIPS Technologies Inc. That company developed the MIPS (Microprocessor without interlocked pipeline stages) RISC (reduced instruction set computing) microprocessor architecture.

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