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Google Oracle The Courts

The Case For Oracle 341

Posted by samzenpus
from the flip-side-of-the-coin dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In a lucid writeup, InfoWorld's Neil McAllister takes a different angle on the Oracle-Google lawsuit, giving an explanation why Oracle was right to sue Google. McAllister argues that Google is splintering the Java platform, just like Microsoft was doing back in the 90s, and should be held up to the same standards. He further cites Google's Josh Bloch calling for Oracle to take a lead role in steering Java, concluding that Bloch maybe 'should have been more careful what he wished for.'"
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The Case For Oracle

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  • by ciaran_o_riordan (662132) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:15PM (#33332254) Homepage

    Problem is, if they can do it to Google, they can do it to any distributor of a free software JVM.

    To be safe, you have to either follow the Java Language Specification exactly (no subsets or supersets), or build your software on the OpenJDK software that Oracle distributes under GPLv2. Here's what info swpat.org has gathered so far about this case and its implications:

    • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @02:08PM (#33333090) Journal

      To be safe, you have to either follow the Java Language Specification exactly (no subsets or supersets),

      Not quite. Supersets are allowed, but only if they do not add anything in the java namespace. For example, you can add a new google.Array class, but you can't add methods to the Array class in the java namespace. The point of this is so that people developing Java applications can assume that anything in the java.* classes on their platform will work on any other platform.

      The problem with Android is that it does implement a load of the java.* namespace, but it is not a complete implementation. This means that code written using portable Java will not always work on Android. I don't think they add anything in the java.* namespace, so you can port apps from android unless they use the android.* stuff.

      This is actually the opposite of what Microsoft did. They added stuff in the java.* namespace, so developers would write apps with J++ that they expected to be portable, but which weren't.

      • by DrXym (126579) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @05:05PM (#33334514)
        The problem with Android is that it does implement a load of the java.* namespace, but it is not a complete implementation. This means that code written using portable Java will not always work on Android. I don't think they add anything in the java.* namespace, so you can port apps from android unless they use the android.* stuff.

        That isn't the problem at all. Android / Dalvik has never claimed to be an implementation of Java so its irrelevant how much or how little of the standard namespace it has implemented. It could have implemented all 100% and Oracle would still be pissed.

        The reason why they're pissed is because Google chose to deliberately make a Java-like environment, one which benefited from the Java programming language but wasn't actually Java and never claimed to be. Therefore it was not subject to Oracle's licensing terms or directional interference. Since Google never claimed it was Java (as did Microsoft when they produced a bastardized version), Oracle cannot sue for licence or trademark infringement.

        All they can do as they have done is rummage around for some patents that were violated in the process. The patents look pretty weak, and some of them don't even cover Android OS, just the SDK. I think what is likely to happen is that Google will vigourously defend the suit and issue a counter suit, but they won't settle for anything less than a sop to Oracle. Perhaps that sop will be to fold JavaFX into the SDK or something. I actually like JavaFX and it would be a good fit and would bring Oracle back in the game to some extent. What I absolutely don't see happening ever is Google using Java ME or dumping Dalvik.

        IMO Oracle / Sun really have themselves to blame for this. Java devs love Java but they despise the glacial pace of development. Java 7 is years overdue and Java ME is stale technology, inadequate for most of the purposes it was touted for. The average STB, or smart phone has outgrown Java ME. I do not blame Google for not waiting around for Oracle's blessing and doing their own thing.

        • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @05:17PM (#33334612) Journal

          That isn't the problem at all. Android / Dalvik has never claimed to be an implementation of Java so its irrelevant how much or how little of the standard namespace it has implemented

          Incorrect. Sun / Oracle licenses all of the patents in the lawsuit, for free, for use in complete implementations of the Java platform. The fact that Android / Dalvik is not a complete implementation of the Java platform is precisely the problem because it means that they are not covered by the patent grant. If it were, then the lawsuit would not exist.

        • by kripkenstein (913150) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @10:00PM (#33336470) Homepage

          Since Google never claimed it was Java

          Maybe Google never formally said that, but here is how Wikipedia describes Android:

          The Android operating system software stack consists of Java applications running on a Java based object oriented application framework on top of Java core libraries running on a Dalvik virtual machine featuring JIT compilation.

          Even clearer, Google says

          The Android SDK provides the tools and APIs necessary to begin developing applications on the Android platform using the Java programming language.

          in developer.android.com.

          I suppose you can call it The-Language-Previously-Known-As-Java or such (worked for Prince, til his contract ran out), but it is Java in every way that counts, except it has some differences that make Java the platform as a whole less standard. This irked Sun, and for good reason, but they got over it. Oracle is not over it. Sadly they decided to enforce this using patents, which is an abhorrent thing to do. But that they are irked by Google's actions - very understandable.

          • by azrider (918631) on Monday August 23, 2010 @10:11AM (#33340526)

            Maybe Google never formally said that, but here is how Wikipedia describes Android:

            The Android operating system software stack consists of Java applications running on a Java based object oriented application framework on top of Java core libraries running on a Dalvik virtual machine featuring JIT compilation.

            Even clearer, Google says

            The Android SDK provides the tools and APIs necessary to begin developing applications on the Android platform using the Java programming language.

            in developer.android.com.

            Talking points:

            • "here is how Wikipedia describes Android": Now there's a cogent, accurate description... I don't think so.
            • "using the Java programming language (not copyrightable, not patentable), not "using a Java Virtual Machine" (patent - maybe, copyright - yes).

            See any difference?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by fermion (181285)
      Here is the problem. If Java was not defended the likes of MS and Google and even Adobe would do everything in their power to splinter it into a confusing mess. MS tried to create extensions to make certain virtual machines work only on MS technology.

      Some say this is only because Oracle now has Java, but if the issue is the mobile platform, we also see that Google is playing hardball with the phone. Google is suing companies that use Google tech on Android without Google approval. Google is charging $

  • by squiggleslash (241428) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:19PM (#33332274) Homepage Journal

    Google isn't advertising Android as a Java platform. It's a platform that you can write code for in the Java language, yes, but this is a world away from claiming you're shipping "Java", and virtually no end users are under the impression Java has anything to do with the Java platform. Be very clear about this: no applications shipped as .jar (or .class) files for J2ME, J2SE, or J2EE, will run under Android, and nobody thinks they will.

    By comparison, Microsoft was shipping a supposedly compliant, but actually semi-incompatable, JVM with Windows that gave users and developers the idea it was a full implementation, which caused programs supposedly written for Java to often fail if either written for the Microsoft JVM and run under a standard stack, or vice versa.

    If this is the crux of the author's argument, he's an idiot. If Google is "fragmenting" Java by allowing you to write programs in the language for its platform, then I suppose every operating system author, from Microsoft to Commodore, has been "fragmenting" Unix by allowing you to write code in C for their non-Unix operating systems.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by hedwards (940851)
      If it's a platform that you can write code for in Java language, then it damn well better compile under the standard Oracle Java, otherwise you're very blatantly infringing upon Oracle's trademark. Additionally, if you can do it the other way around, then it's really not Java language programming. This isn't C where platforms are allowed to be incompatible, the whole purpose of Java was theoretically to allow it to be written once and run on any platform with Java support. What Google has opted to do damage
      • What Google has opted to do damages Oracle's trademark by referring to non-compatible software as Java language.

        Fine, then Google can change the name to "Javoid or "Andra" or something like that.

        • by boxwood (1742976) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:23PM (#33332716)

          or Dalvik?

          Actually you never see Google say "Java" without it being immediately followed by either "Programming Language" or "Language Compiler". Anytime there's mention of "virtual machine" its always immediately preceded by "Dalvik".

          I'm not an expert on trademark law, but I'm sure Google has checked with people who are, so it seems that saying "Android has Java" would be a violation, but saying "Android has Dalvik which uses the Java programming language" is not.

          But I guess thats for the courts to decide.

          • I'm sure Google has checked with people who are

            I'm sure Google Legal has numerous top-flight IP lawyers on staff.

      • by iserlohn (49556)

        While what you are saying may be true, we're talking about software patents here, and not about trademarks. Please try to keep up.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by epiphani (254981)

        Java (the language) is free and open. Java (the trademark) is not. Provided google is not doing business advertising "Android - with Java(tm)!", they're doing nothing wrong. Oracle owns ONLY the trademark.

      • by diegocg (1680514) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:58PM (#33332518)

        What Google has opted to do damages Oracle's trademark by referring to non-compatible software as Java language.

        Oracle disagrees with you. They aren't suing Google because of some trademark issue, they are doing it because of patent infringement. And the patents are more about the dalvik VM than about Java itself - .NET probably infringes those patents too, but Oracle probably won't take Microsoft to court.

        And there is nothing wrong with "forking" Java. What's the problem with the Dalvik VM and the Harmony classes? Maybe it can replace Oracle's Java in the embedded market? Well, I think that's better than letting C# kill Java, like Sun has been doing in the last years.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by beakerMeep (716990)

        Additionally, if you can do it the other way around, then it's really not Java language programming.

        Enter Dalvik, stage left.

        The VM in Android (Dalvik) is said to be a 'clean room' reverse engineering of a JVM and is not an actual JVM. In fact it does not run .class or .jar files but runs .apk and .dex files which are a format compiled from code written in Java (or C, C++, etc). How big of a difference this makes legally is debatable, but there has been precedent and it's in Google's favor.

        See Case law under: Clean room design [wikipedia.org]

        So are you bound by Java licensing if you used it to cross compile

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by yyxx (1812612)

        If it's a platform that you can write code for in Java language, then it damn well better compile under the standard Oracle Java, otherwise you're very blatantly infringing upon Oracle's trademark.

        Language syntax does not define a trademark. The trademark is on the word "Java", nothing else.

        This isn't C where platforms are allowed to be incompatible, the whole purpose of Java was theoretically to allow it to be written once and run on any platform with Java support.

        The law doesn't give a damn what pipe dre

      • by Nushio (951488)

        I'm an android developer, and whenever someone asks me about developing for Android devices, the first thing I tell them is that it may look like java and it might be syntax-compatible, but calling the Android Development Language 'Java' is a huge mistake that'll cost you a couple dozen hours in development time.

    • by tomhath (637240)

      Be very clear about this: no applications shipped as .jar (or .class) files for J2ME, J2SE, or J2EE, will run under Android, and nobody thinks they will.

      Isn't that the whole problem? If they call it a Java platform, it should run software written in Java.

      • by SilentMobius (10171) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:45PM (#33332426)

        Which is why Google _don't_ call it a java platform. It's dalvik, it runs dalvik bytecode on a dalvik VM. You can write in any high level language you like as long as you have a compiler that results in dalvik bytecode.

        As a convenience, Google provide a java->dalvik bytecode compiler, which is nice of them, but they don't ship a JVM nor a java system.

      • by yyxx (1812612)

        Isn't that the whole problem? If they call it a Java platform, it should run software written in Java.

        They don't call it a Java platform.

    • by ADRA (37398) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:00PM (#33332532)

      Firstly, on a strictly legal sense, they're suing over Patents and Copyrights. The copyright route seems rather fishy, and I wouldn't be surprised if this argument gets dropped later. The patent suit is like all others, and has little if anything to do with the spirit of java, etc..

      On a philosophical sense, Oracle is correct. Android may never claim to be Java, but anyone who isn't a retard knows that Google is enticing Java developers into their pseudo-compatible platforms. From a personal perspective, it is annoying porting existing java apps into AppEngine / Android. The standard class libs limitations make interoperability between stock java and Google's platforms more difficult. This IS similar to the tack that Microsoft made proprietary core feature additions. Microsoft was never forced to use Java when coming up with their proprietary JVM. They chose java because it had buzz, and they assumed it would be next good language to assimilate and conquer. I don't think Google wants to kill Java, but I think they want to steal the large pool of existing Java developers and coerce them to use their platforms. Does this diversity hurt java (the language) in the end? Yes. Much of the advantage of java is in the rich set of additions built upon existing platforms. If those libraries now have to choose which platform to track against, it means two versions of common libraries, and smaller guys may just not bother to support J2SE,Android,AppEngine,GWT, etc...

    • by Calibax (151875) *

      Actually there are a number of similarities. I'm not taking sides here - I don't write Java and don't care about it myself. However, I do care that licenses are upheld as I've personally been bitten by people ripping off my code for their profit.

      When Google decided to use Java they had full access to the Java license, and they had full knowledge of the very public lawsuit between Sun and Microsoft. They still chose to do what Microsoft did and ship an incompatible version of Java. I suspect that (like M

  • While I can definitely see the value of non-fragmentation for Java, which is why something like Microsoft's "mostly java + some MS stuff" pissed them off back in the day; it is my understanding that Sun themselves had several variants of java for different environments, with Java Card on the low end, for SIM-level embedded environments, up to Java EE. I am told that these are not entirely identical, nor is something like the Java ME on different phone models entirely similar between devices.

    To what degre
  • by ScrewMaster (602015) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:26PM (#33332312)

    McAllister argues that Google is splintering the Java platform, just like Microsoft was doing back in the 90s, and should be held up to the same standards.

    What the hell does that mean? Microsoft got sued because it failed to live up to a contract (huge surprise there.) There are no contractual issues here, so far as I'm aware (if I'm wrong someone please correct me.)

    Java isn't some religious manuscript that needs to be kept "pure" so the true believers won't rise up and slay those who would adulterate it. It's a goddamn PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE. If Oracle is suing Google, it has nothing whatsoever to do with Java being held to some standard (I could believe that of Sun, who held a certain vision for their progeny and a justifiable pride in their work) but is part of a some strategic plan. Matter of fact, that was Sun's strategy: keep Java consistent across all platforms so that "write once, run anywhere" would work. Do you really think that is a part of Oracle's planning? Is it even of the slightest concern?

    Larry Ellison is a lot of things (I've heard appellations such as "real son of a bitch", "bastard", and "prick" applied to him on a regular basis) but he's not exactly a visionary. This is about money and access to specific markets, and trying to spin it as being about the welfare of the Java programming language is ridiculous. If I were a real conspiracy theorist I would have to wonder if one of Google's real competitors in the advertising space were behind this, but I'm not. I leave that to other posters.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by sco08y (615665)

      Java isn't some religious manuscript that needs to be kept "pure" so the true believers won't rise up and slay those who would adulterate it.

      It may as well be, because a computer is about as fanatical a purist as you can get. I mean, I drop one fucking semicolon and, by the pages of errors and warnings, gcc wants me hung drawn and quartered for apostasy.

  • Now go read what I wrote and then the replies that refute my position.

    http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1760290&cid=33311026 [slashdot.org]

    The problem with the logical and technical reasons and why they don't apply to what I am guessing Oracle is thinking is that this stuff ends up in a court to be judged by people who have no idea what all of this means.

  • While I like to feel that Google is somehow better than Microsoft in all ways, I know this is clearly not true. The problem I do have with Google and their Java VM is that they aren't really contributing back to the core Java platform, and their choice of a different VM byte code makes me think of some of the things that hurt Smalltalk. In the case of Smalltalk none of the differing VM implementations were compatible, so it meant the you lost of the ability of 'compile once, run everywhere'. In many way wha

    • by Cyberax (705495) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:39PM (#33332838)

      "While I like to feel that Google is somehow better than Microsoft in all ways, I know this is clearly not true. The problem I do have with Google and their Java VM is that they aren't really contributing back to the core Java platform"

      And how can they do it? JCP is dysfunctional, just look how long it takes to release JDK7. And there are other even more blatant examples:

      What else? Google has written a lot of splendid Java libraries (like http://code.google.com/p/google-collections/ [google.com] ). Sun/Oracle are free to take and integrate them into the JDK - they did this with Xerces and other libraries.

      But they won't do this. Why? Because Java is dead. For example, a request to add Multimaps was filed in 1998 and is still open: http://bugs.sun.com/bugdatabase/view_bug.do?bug_id=4155149 [sun.com] Sun can't be bothered to take one of available Multimap implementations and add it to the core JDK.

      "In many way what Oracle should be pushing for is:
          - getting Google to use the standard Java byte code"

      What for? To make devices run slower?

      " - working with Oracle to contribute their work back to the core"

      Contribute back what? Android implements core libraries very faithfully.

      • by devent (1627873) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @06:02PM (#33334908) Homepage
        I'm sorry, but for what purpose you need a Multimap in the core of Java? I'm using Java now for 4 years and I never needed a Multimap. And if you need a Multimap, why not include some third library? You properly need a whole bunch of third party libraries anyway, like you need with any language.

        I think that's the big reason that Java is so much used in the enterprise, because the core is rock solid and there are a whole ecosystem of free and open source enterprise ready libraries. I had used C# as well and I just cannot understand why you need so much bloat in the core of the language, which changes anyway with the major versions of it. Properties are just bloat, operator overloading is just bloat, structs are bloat and so on. If you need such things just take Scala, Groovy, JPython, etc. That's why I really like Java. The core language is rock stable and very easy to use with tools like Eclipse and Maven. But if you need the extras, just take Groovy, JPython, JRuby, Scala, Clojure, JavaScript, etc.

        Now I really wish that Oracle would make this things better: Desktop Java, and "Internet Java". Because to write a desktop application in Java is like a developers dream and it runs with the same speed as a native application. As a bonus you get platform independence. I take a Java application anytime over a native application, for one reason: you just download the JAR file and it runs. In the "Internet Java" there is so much potential and it's criminal from Sun to not became the market leader for internet applications written in Java. That was a catastrophic management failure. Java Web Start applications are a dream. You just click on a link and in few seconds you get a fully functional application. Now of course everything is Flash, but if Sun would have had a better management they could have been the market leader.

        What I really hope is that the open source community around Java finally takes the lead and cut any ties off to Oracle. What the open source community can do you can see with Groovy, Scala and Clojure and the other languages around Java. But they need to have a leader, like Linus with the Linux kernel, to not fragmentize the Java platform. I really with that this lawsuit is a wake up call to the community. The Java platform is under the GPL, now take it and make it the number one in desktops and in the internet. The potential is there. There is an open source enterprise ready virtuel machine with a rich core library and a more richer open source ecosystem around it. The patents are only valid in the USA so screw Oracle and any other American patent troll company.

        Please, someone in Europe, India or in China (anywhere where there are no patents threads), take the Java technology and make it the next Linux kernel. The potential is there. It's open source and it works.
  • by liloldme (593606) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:43PM (#33332404)

    I stopped reading right where it said Dalvik is Java based. It doesn't even run Java byte codes...

    Is it a requirement for a tech reporter to be completely clueless? Is not doing basic research part of the job requirement?

    Following this logic Google Web Toolkit is "Java-based" too. Nevermind that the whole thing compiles to HTML and JavaScript.

    Just because Google provides language bindings in Java (and is able to cross-compile the Java class libraries to another runtime), does not make Dalvik runtime "Java-based". It does mean Google is able to leverage existing developer base on their new platform though. Smart move.

    What's next, Oracle going to sue GCJ for compiling Java to native?

    • by Hast (24833) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:56PM (#33332504)

      Is it a requirement for a tech reporter to be completely clueless?

      No; but it helps.

    • by funkatron (912521)

      Is it a requirement for a tech reporter to be completely clueless? Is not doing basic research part of the job requirement?

      Following this logic Google Web Toolkit is "Java-based" too. Nevermind that the whole thing compiles to HTML and JavaScript.

      This is unfair to reporters. They're not completely clueless. All reporters have to be computer literate enough to copy and paste the text from the press release.

    • by Haxamanish (1564673) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:41PM (#33332852)
      From wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:

      Specifically the patent infringement claim references 7 patents including US Patent No. 5966702 [uspto.gov] "Method And Apparatus For Preprocessing And Packaging Class Files", and US Patent No. 6910205 [uspto.gov] "Interpreting Functions Utilizing A Hybrid Of Virtual And Native Machine Instructions".[15] It also references US Patent No. RE38104 [uspto.gov] "Method And Apparatus For Resolving Data References In Generated Code" authored by James Gosling [...]

      As I understand it (disclaimer: I'm a philosopher in Belgium), not using Java on Android would not solve the problem, since Oracle is attacking the Dalvik VM. So, even if it were running JavaScript, Python, Go or C#, Dalvik would according to Oracle violate the Java VM Patents.

      Solutions would thus be:
      - Prove those patents are not applicable to Dalvik
      - Find prior art to invalidate the patents (any lawyer-hacker who is familiar with, say, the inner workings of UCSD Pascal?)
      - Reform the US patent system, the most drastic reform would be the abolishment of all "intellectual property"
      - Move out of the US
      - Pay Oracle or make another deal with them like swapping some patents and/or technologies

      • by sznupi (719324) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:54PM (#33332964) Homepage

        Might get even more unpleasant if Oracle will be able to demonstrate (hey, don't dismiss anything in regards to legal system) that the purpose of Dalvik was to appear different enough while doing essentially identical thing, too. You know, law & its intent, letter, etc....

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Haxamanish (1564673)
        Sorry for replying to self, but /. has no edit function...

        The above "solutions" I suggest are solutions which keep Dalvik - I don't know why Google has chosen Dalvik over Java VM, I assume/hope it was on technical grounds. Dropping Dalvik, perhaps in favour of Java VM, might also be an option.
    • I stopped reading right where it said Dalvik is Java based. It doesn't even run Java byte codes...

      No, it runs "different" bytecodes that just happen to have exactly the same semantics as Java bytecodes. Dalvik can correctly execute Java programs, therefore it is a Java VM; everything else is syntactic hair-splitting.

      What's next, Oracle going to sue GCJ for compiling Java to native?

      Don't give them any ideas. Oracle's new policy appears to be "use OpenJDK or pay up"; since GCJ falls in neither category, it could be in trouble.

    • You would have done better to keep reading. The WHOLE POINT of the case is that the open source lice grants access to the patents on the Java IF and ONLY IF you fully implement java and USE THE JVM. since Dalvik does not use the Java byte code it clearly violates the open source lic terms and thus is open to a patent suit.

  • But that still doesn't explain why one of oracle's demands is for all copies of android to be destroyed. That demand just reeks of evil power trip. I would prefer it if my very nice phone continued to work and it needs android to do that. Oracle need to back off a bit.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by oiron (697563)

      Actually, from what I've heard, this is pretty standard in patent infringement cases. They may not be shooting for it, but they'll use it as a bargaining position.

  • Face the truth (Score:3, Insightful)

    by TRRosen (720617) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @12:45PM (#33332432)

    Face the truth why didn't Google use a full implementation of java as they are required by the patent grants. Because they wanted people to write for there platform and not simply port software. Just like Apple not wanting Flash for the same reason.

    • Just like Apple not wanting Flash for the same reason.

      Except Google really doesn't care what SDK you wrote the app in... be it Flash or that drag and drop tool they have.

    • wrong (Score:5, Insightful)

      by yyxx (1812612) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:17PM (#33332654)

      Face the truth why didn't Google use a full implementation of java as they are required by the patent grants. Because they wanted people to write for there platform and not simply port software.

      Google didn't use a "full implementation of Java" because J2SE is extremely bloated and unsuitable for mobile phone use. And they couldn't use Sun's implementation because that wasn't even open sourced when they started. J2ME doesn't have a patent grant, so making a cleanroom implementation of that wouldn't have helped them either.

      Of course, Google didn't use "an implementation of Java" at all, they implemented something completely different that happens to use Java syntax. Oracle's lawsuit is not based on the parts that Android happens to share with Java, because those are not covered by any patents.

  • When Microsoft was sued, Java was not yet open source. Microsoft had to buy the right to distribute Java. They were sued for breach of contract. Now that Java is open source, a whole new set of issues come into play. There are significant aspects of open source licensing that have yet to be decided in the courts. Those precedents may finally be set.

  • McAllister argues that Google is splintering the Java platform, just like Microsoft was doing back in the 90s

    So what? Companies don't have a right not to have their platforms "splintered".

    Besides, Google isn't "splintering the Java platform", they created a new platform that happens to use the Java language.

    Furthermore, Sun/Oracle's mobile efforts are largely dead, so Google isn't "splintering" anything, it is replacing them with something actually viable.

  • Maybe this would be a good time for Google to cut ties with the Java language altogether, by coming up with a new, better language that compiles to Dalvik. The Java language has too many problems anyway.

  • What Oracle are objecting to, regardless of the legal mechanisms they're using, is the *their* developers are being diverted onto a platform they don't control. Google don't use any Java source code, trademarks and so on, but once they have a community of programmers using the Java language (without the current Java leadership in control of the platform) Oracle may find "their" developers wanting future "Androidisms" porting back to the JDK. Imagine a Java with unsigned integers, a quicker/dirtier native

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