"I2C" versus "IIC"

Matt Porter mporter at kernel.crashing.org
Thu Oct 14 06:54:44 EST 2004

On Wed, Oct 13, 2004 at 04:48:34PM -0400, Mark Chambers wrote:
> > On Wed, Oct 13, 2004 at 02:18:03PM -0600, VanBaren, Gerald (AGRE) wrote:
> > > Just to mess with your minds... I2C is a trademark of Philips
> > > Electronics N.V. so that is probably not the best choice from a
> > > legalistic point of view.
> > 
> > It's been related to me several times that this is the reason why
> > most implementers refer to their interface/bus as IIC in
> > documentation.
> Assuming this to be true, it still may be a bit misguided.  Using 'i2c' to
> refer to a legal implementation is no more illegal than a restaurant
> putting 'Coke' on their menu.  What does Philips want?  They want
> royalties from implementations of i2c, and they do not want the term
> diluted by using it to refer to other similar protocols.  So I don't
> think that just changing to 'iic' would pacify them in either of these
> cases.  If it's truly i2c I don't think they care what you call your
> variables, (just so the chip manufacturer pays up) and if it's not, 
> find a completely different name.

I was talking about the trademark infringement. You are talking about
something completely different, patent-encumbered licensable
technology.  The naming is subject only to trademark considerations.

Whether a bus implementation is subject to Philips licensing
requirements (if any) is another area I'm not interested in. :)


More information about the Linuxppc-embedded mailing list