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Meta sued by US startup to face trial for stealing its trade secrets



Meta, sued by US startup to face lawsuit for 'stealing' its trade secrets

Neural Magic sued Meta in 2020 for allegedly stealing its algorithms. (typical)

Meta Platforms Inc lost a bid on Monday to end a lawsuit in Boston federal court that claimed it stole confidential information from artificial-intelligence startup Neural Magic Inc.

US District Judge Dennis Kasper said Meta will face trial over allegations that it took Neural Magic’s “breakthrough” algorithm, which enables AI systems to process information more quickly.

The court also allowed testimony from an expert who said Meta owed Neural Magic $766 million in royalties.

Representatives for Meta and Neural Magic did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the decision. The trial is currently scheduled to begin in September.

Somerville, Massachusetts-based NeuralMagic was founded by two former Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers. Its investors include venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz, VMware, Comcast and Verizon, according to its website.

Neural Magic sued Meta, known as Facebook, in 2020 for allegedly stealing algorithms that enable simple computers to run complex mathematical calculations more efficiently and allow research scientists to access large data sets. allows to do.

The lawsuit says Meta hired a Neural Magic computer scientist, Alexander Zlatesky, who gave the social-media giant the algorithms that form the “heart” of Neural Magic’s technology.

Neural Magic said Meta published the algorithm on the open-source website GitHub and thanked Zlatesky for solving “a problem critical to Facebook’s continued progress in the world of artificial intelligence.”

Meta asked the court to dismiss the case last year, arguing that NeuralMagic had failed to identify any protected trade secrets and that Zlatesky had improperly obtained the information. But the court on Monday allowed NeuralMagic’s case to continue for all but one of the 41 secrets accused of misrepresenting Meta.

Kasper granted parts of Meta and Zlatesky’s request, rejecting Neural Magic’s claims that they violated a non-compete clause or engaged in unfair trade practices under Massachusetts law.

The case is Neural Magic Inc. v. Meta Platforms Inc., US District Court for the District of Massachusetts, No. 1:20-CV-10444.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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