[TUHS] Current Ownership of 3B/WECo Computer IPs

alan at alanlee.org alan at alanlee.org
Mon Sep 11 11:35:46 AEST 2023

My understanding is all the WE IP was retained through the 
Alcatel-Lucent mergers and is now owned by Nokia.  That would include 
all the 3Bx systems and WE32k.


On 2023-09-10 21:11, segaloco via TUHS wrote:

> Hello folks, I'm here today with a question that sprung off of some 
> 3B20 research.
> When 1984 happened and ATTIS rose from the ashes of former Bell System 
> computing efforts, presumably ATTIS received all IP rights from Western 
> Electric for 3B processors, WE32000, and so on, and continued to sell 
> related products through to the 3B2 line. Is this the case, is ATTIS 
> the formal recipient of both computing software *and* hardware IPs 
> after the breakup?
> Given that, plus subsequent market flow, "old AT&T" scooped up and 
> paraded around in effigy by SBC, other old Bell stuff cannibalized by 
> other RBOCs, spinoffs of stuff to Novell, then Caldera/SCO on the other 
> side...who all wound up with the hardware IPs? The story as it 
> "concludes" concerning UNIX is of course tied up in all the subsequent 
> lawsuits, what with Novell and Caldera conflicts on ownership, transfer 
> to the Open Group, so on and so forth, and SCO and progeny wind up with 
> the Sys V "trunk."
> Is there a clear, current owner of these WECo hardware IPs, or have 
> those waters grown even murkier than those of UNIX in the times after 
> AT&T proper?
> Thanks everyone!
> - Matt G.
> P.S. As an aside (even though it's the more directly UNIX thing...) is 
> anything after SVR4 developments that would've involved the same folks 
> as were working up to that point in the USL group? Or did the transfer 
> of System V to Novell also involve their own in house folks starting to 
> take it over, then over to SCO, is there anything post SVR4 (4.2, 5, 
> UnixWare stuff) that would even remotely be considered the logical next 
> step by the same folks that engineered SVR4, or was it basically just 
> another face in the crowd of "UNIX <xyz>" when USL wasn't involved 
> anymore? Probably not the first time this has been asked either so to a 
> finer point I'm basically fishing for whether anything post the initial 
> SVR4 releases in the early 90s is generally considered "pure" in any 
> way or if the Bell streams pretty much terminate with Research V10 and 
> SVR4, (and IX) at the turn of the 90s.
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