Appeals court upholds NI’s patent infringement judgment against MathWorks

Austin, TX—National Instruments (NI) reports that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently reaffirmed the judgment of infringement of three NI patents by Massachusetts-based The MathWorks Inc.

By Control Engineering Staff September 14, 2004

Austin, TX— National Instruments (NI) reports that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit recently reaffirmed the judgment of infringement of three NI patents by Massachusetts-based The MathWorks Inc. The appeals court’s decision affirms an existing jury verdict in NI’s favor, which found infringement by MathWorks’ Simulink and related products.

U.S. patents 4,901,221, 4,914,568 and 5,301,336 relate to NI’s LabView software, and cover innovations in NI’s programming design tools. A fourth patent, 5,291,587, was found to be valid but not infringed.

In June 2003, Judge T. John Ward of the District Court for the Eastern District of Texas (Marshall Division) upheld the jury’s January 2003 verdict finding validity and infringement of NI’ patents, and issued an order forbidding the sale of Simulink software after any appeal was disposed of in NI’s favor.

‘We are pleased that the court of appeals affirmed the verdict,’ says David Hugley, NI’s general counsel and VP. ‘LabView has had a revolutionary impact on scientists and engineers with its innovative virtual instrumentation approach. We have invested heavily in the intellectual property in LabView, and the court of appeals ruling further protects and validates our intellectual property.’

NI continues to offer the LabView Simulation Interface Toolkit, which adds the LabView user interface to the Simulink environment. With the toolkit, design engineers can use LabView-based user interfaces to intuitively control and view data within their control models. The kit gives MathWorks’ customers a licensed way to control and view Simulink data under NI’s patents.

Final royalty damages will be recorded in the firm’s financial statements after the issuance of the appeals court’s written mandate and the release of the escrow. The company anticipates using a significant portion of the proceeds to fund academic research and classroom projects for improving science, technology, engineering and mathematics education.

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Jim Montague, news editor
jmontague@reedbusiness.com