Microsoft Corp. illegally took technology used to link spreadsheet data between two of its programs from a Guatemalan inventor, lawyers said during opening statements at a jury trial that started on Tuesday. Carlos Armando Amado said in a lawsuit that he filed for a patent in 1990 for software that links Microsoft's Excel program with its Access database application via a single spreadsheet, and that he unsuccessfully tried to sell it to Microsoft two years later.
Amado is seeking damages that could exceed $500 million in in the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court of Central California. Microsoft, based in Redmond, Washington, began using his software without permission in various versions of Access, such as Access 95, 97, 2000 and 2002, according to Amado, who said he created the technology while he was a graduate student at Stanford University.
News source: Reuters