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The leading supplier of x86 microprocessors, Intel Corp., has reportedly filed a lawsuit accusing its much smaller rival – Transmeta Corp. – in violating its patents related to low-power microprocessors, making a response against similar accusations by Transmeta. Ahead of the forthcoming trial, the smaller developer of chips announced that a new chief executive will take over the company.

While no details are clear, it is known that Intel accuses Transmeta of infringing seven of its central processing units-related patents, some of which concern reduction of power consumption and other speak about methods of microprocessor’s work. Intel also denied the fact that it had violated Trasmeta’s patent.

Back in October Transmeta accused Intel of infringing its patents by making and selling a variety of microprocessor products including at least Intel’s Pentium III, Pentium 4, Pentium M, Core and Core 2 product lines. The complaint requests an injunction against Intel’s continuing sales of infringing products as well as monetary damages, including reasonable royalties on infringing products, treble damages and attorneys’ fees.

Transmeta on Tuesday announced that Lester M. Crudele has been appointed president and chief executive officer, effective February 1, 2007, replacing Arthur L. Swift. Mr. Swift will continue as the company's president and chief executive officer during the interim period. Mr. Crudele has served on Transmeta's board of directors since June 2005, and has evaluated the company’s business opportunities and potential projects as a management consultant since October of 2006. Mr. Crudele will also continue to serve on the board of directors.

Mr. Crudele has 30 years experience with companies in the semiconductor industry. He began his career at Motorola, where he was chief architect for several Motorola MC 68000-series microprocessors and served in a variety of management positions, most recently returning to Motorola in 1990 and serving as vice president and general manager of its RISC Microprocessor Division from 1991 to 1997. Crudele also has management experience at several computer systems companies, including Compaq, where he served as vice president and general manager of Compaq’s workstation products division from 1997 to 1999. From 1999 to 2000, Crudele served on the board of directors and as a management consultant for Quantum Effect Devices until QED was acquired by PMC-Sierra in 2000. From 2000 to 2004, Crudele served on the board of directors of Banderacom, a privately held InfiniBand semiconductor company, for which he also served as president and CEO from 2000 to 2002. Most recently, in 2006, he served for a six-month period as COO of Quickfilter Technologies, a privately held fabless semiconductor company. In addition, Crudele was an early member of the leadership team at MIPS Computer Systems and has served on the board of directors for several privately held companies and industry groups.

In addition to the organizational announcement, Transmeta also announced that it now expects to report over $40 million in cash, cash equivalents and short term investments as of December 31, 2006, consistent with the previously stated expectation of greater than $35 million at year end.

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