A Massachusetts company has sued the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) Association for patent infringement, charging the project with stealing its designs for a multilingual keyboard.
Lagos Analysis Corp., or Lancor, filed the lawsuit Thursday in the Federal High Court, Lagos Judicial Division in Nigeria, where the company owns a patent for a four shift-key keyboard, said Ad Oyegbola, Lancor’s CEO.
OLPC illegally reverse-engineered the company’s patented keyboard, which, with its four-shift keys, allows computers to better handle multiple languages, Oyegbola said. Lancor wants the Nigerian court to award “substantial” damages and issue a permanent injunction to prevent OLPC from manufacturing and selling its XO laptop.
Oyegbola said he hopes Lancor can reach a settlement with OLPC before the Nigerian court issues an injunction. OLPC could have “sought a license and gotten it for a minimal fee,” he said. “We’re hoping … they can come to their senses, and we sit down and come to a reasonable settlement.”