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NOV.-DEC. 2019        TAP TIMES          -10-        While litigation that becomes a game
                                                                changer, such as the furor over the ‘027
                                                                patent, is not common, every-day battles
                  Bottom-gating (from 9)                        involving patents used in processes or
                                                                semiconductor gear are common.


        told the Times.  Even though the five de-
        fendants had spent barrels of money to                  Academia sues
        defend themselves from the infringement                 Most allege that Competitor A swiped the
        charges, they claimed, as the Times re-                 technology invented by Competitor B used
        ported, “the ruling was a victory for them              in a semiconductor production tool. In
        because they would not be blocked from                  other cases, however, academia has sued
        importing chips.”                                       commercial chip makers.


        According to the article, the five, through             The iconic Harvard University has become,
        a spokesperson, said they would not be                  one of the more litigious universities re-
        forced to pay royalties to TI.  This state-             ported The Boston Herald (July 3, 2016).
        ment is at odds, however, with the millions
        in royalities TI received to shore up its               In June 2016, Harvard sued Micron Tech-
        bottom line.                                            nologies, the Boise, Idaho memory leader
                                                                for patent infringement.  Harvard earlier
                                                                filed a similar infringement suit against
        Shoved in their snoot                                   GLOBALFOUNDRIES. That action was set-
        Dr. T.J. Rogers (right),, Cy-                           tled in May 2016.
        press Semiconductor’s con-
        troversial founder, former
        president and CEO, who was                              Atomic Layer Deposition
        known as  the  “Bad Boy of                              The process, invented by chemistry pro-
        Silicon Valley,” supposedly groused to the              fessor Roy G. Gordon, involves the use of
        Times:                                                  a process known as “Atomic Layer Deposi-
                                                                tion.”
        “Whe you go to the ITC and spend your $2
        million, the purpose is to shut somebody                Prof. Gordon and his lab team, the suit
        down.”  Dr. Rogers called TI “bullies,” who             reported, worked on the process from the
        got it shoved in their snoot today” (with               late 1990s and into the early 2000s.
        the ruling.)
                                                                The Gordon method relates to the deposi-
                                                                tion of metal thin films and other materi-
                                                                als.  It creates an insulating layer on a
                                                                semiconductor chip.  Patents were issued
                                                                in 2005.


                                                                After its filing in Federal court and the
                                                                healing qualities of two-years’ time and
                                                                attorney costs, Harvard announced in
                                                                March 2018 that the suit had been ameca-
                                                                bly resolved.  Exactly what Micron paid or
                                                                did not pay for a Harvard license was not
                                                                revealed.  Page 12
                 Prof. Gordon in his lab (Harvard Photo)
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