Hacked Gadgets Forum

October 24, 2009

Sparkfun Cease and Desist Letter from SPARC International

at 12:31 pm. Filed under Other


Sparkfun received a Cease and Desist letter from SPARC International. It’s a sad day when a good organization like SPARC have a bunch of lawyers that do nothing but send out this type of garbage. This just causes unnecessary havoc for a great company like Sparkfun who has a name that has a section which sounds similar. What’s next SparkPlug International will no longer be able to sell their electronic spark plug tester?

This reminds me of the careless actions of Monster Cable!

Click here to send an email to sparcinfo@sparc.org to let them know how you feel.

Thanks CY Brown and IraqiGeek for the info.


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9 Responses to “Sparkfun Cease and Desist Letter from SPARC International”

  1. vic Says:

    Sun is not responsible for this. They do not own SPARC. They created it in 1989 to hold own the IP of the SPARC machines, and it now functions as an autonomous entity. Much like ARM, their only property is their IP, which they tried to protect a little too zealously this time.

  2. Alan Parekh Says:

    Hi Vic,

    Thanks you are totally right! That came as a surprise to me.

    From the SPARC Website

    ” SPARC (which stands for Scalable Processor ARChitecture) is an open set of technical specifications that any person or company can license and use to develop microprocessors and other semiconductor devices based on published industry standards.

    SPARC was invented in the labs of Sun Microsystems Inc., based upon pioneering research into Reduced Instruction Set Computing (RISC) at the University of California at Berkeley. The first standard product based on the SPARC architecture was produced by Sun and Fujitsu in 1986; Sun followed in 1987 with its first workstation based on a SPARC processor.

    In 1989, Sun Microsystems transferred ownership of the SPARC specifications to an independent, non-profit organization, SPARC International, which administers and licenses the technology.

    As an open architecture, the SPARC specifications have been refreshed with advanced technologies, evolving to SPARC Version 9. All versions of the architecture are available today.”

  3. Sean Says:


    On the obverse side, SUN Microsystems spawned them and is a member thereof. SPARC is synonymous in most minds in the industry with SUN. We, over the years were subject to much hype and advertising that firmly branded it into our consciousness. So what hurt caused by SPARC International with this shenanigans also sticks to SUN Microsystems by association.

  4. Sean Says:

    Trademark Trolling means we’re circling the drain

    Just like urban areas have to deal with a problem called urban blight,
    we are seeing that Silicon Valley is dealing, or rather in this case
    creating a problem called Silicon Blight.

    SPARC International and by association, SUN Microsystems are attacking
    their future by embroiling a source (SparkFun Electronics) for
    electronics components and educational information for our future
    electronics technicians, engineers, firmware programmers and robotics

    The spurious attempt by SPARC International to fraudulently steal
    SparkFun Electronics domain name sends the message to these future
    workers that we are living in the United States of America, the land of
    NO OPPORTUNITY, NO FUTURE, and NO JUSTICE. You are sending the message
    that the best route to getting tech jobs would be to find an H1B Visa
    holder, get very friendly and attempt to emigrate for a tech internship

    SUN Microsystems customers tend to be pretty well educated, it takes a
    little higher level of knowledge to implement your equipment. We know
    that SPARC is an architecture used in a big, really expensive box that
    truthfully can be replaced today by a few high end Intel products with
    more readily available replacement parts and an operating system that
    tends to have more people familiar with its setup and operation and are
    dealing with management who wants to cut costs.

    We probably also are people who waste our off hours tinkering with
    electronics projects, building autonomous robots, goofing around with
    microprocessors and interesting ways of monitoring our house pets over
    the internet while we are maintaining your SUN Microsystems computers
    which don’t do a very good job of implementing all these Rube Goldberg
    like inventions. For parts to create these products, we depend on
    SparkFun Electronics.

    I don’t see SUN Microsystems or SPARC International stepping up to the
    plate in my lifetime to become an equivalent of DigiKey or Mouser
    (SparkFun’s actual type of business). I don’t see putting an array of
    ARM, ATMega, PIC and other microcontrollers together using flash cards
    for memory with GPS input, two axis gyro, servo and gear motor outputs
    to create a SPARC architecture based server system.

    Your feeling an economic pinch, deciding to set a bunch of lawyers after
    an electronics components supplier and electronics technology educator
    instead of a true competitor screams of desperation on a massive scale.
    If you win, your name is basically synonymous with all that’s going
    wrong in the US tech sector. just by having the letter sent out, SUN
    Microsystems and SPARC International have done themselves damage.

    SPARC is an acronym denoting a computer architecture.

    SparkFun is a company that provides components that will not be used in
    a SPARC architecture computer system and your attack will through their
    educational channels, send the message to young electronics enthusiasts
    that US technology employers like SUN Microsystems don’t want them.

  5. yon Says:

    weird, yesterday firefox told me http://www.sparc.org was an attack site.

  6. anon Says:

    yon, there is nothing weird about that…

  7. London Says:

    It’s a shame when big wigs feel the need to take legal action for such petty things with very little basis that will negatively affect a lot of people.

  8. Anononymous Says:

    Do it right…
    Don’t call it SPARC anymore…
    Call it CRAPS ….

  9. Andre Says:

    they are going to get a lot of hate mail.

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