December 20, 2014

Oracle to Google: "We're Taking Our Java and Going Home! Unless You Pay."

Some interesting news broke late yesterday about the fact that Oracle is suing Google over the use of Java in the development of the Android platform.

A quote from the news.sky.com article:

The suit claims that Google “knowingly, directly and repeatedly infringed Oracle’s Java-related intellectual property” in developing Android, according to a statement from Oracle.

I cannot help but think Oracle is crying in their milk a little bit.  It is no secret that Oracle’s founder, Larry Ellison has always wanted to corner the market on cloud computing.  The whole idea of Oracle back in the day was that it was going to revolutionize computing by giving everyone sleek, portable terminals that tap into the Oracle database for all of their information.  Granted, Ellison was a visionary as we have seen this come to fruition with Android and implementations of cloud computing.

I see this suit as way to express some frustrations from a company that is frustrated that they have never become the information giant like Google has.  Back when Android development started in 2007, Java engineers were troubled and upset because of the implementation of Android, and it not being what they recommend.  What better way to strike back than in Google’s pocket.

Whether or not Oracle has a leg to stand on here to me is not the relevant question, what is the issue is what does Oracle stand to gain?  Or rather, what are they hoping to gain from Google?  A piece of Android future considerations?  Would they not be better served by trying to partner with Google rather than trying to make them an enemy?

I am sure we will be hearing more about this in the coming months, stay tuned.



  • http://planet.eckhardt.ws Planet

    The picture doesn’t match the story. It’s more like the bully ripping off the nerd’s lunch money.

  • http://www.fathatgames.com Brock Hatfield

    My full time job is working for a very large company. We have been asked to submit ideas simply to try to patent them. Then the legal group files these and uses them to scrape money from other companies. I know my employers dealings have been in the news far more than once.

    What is odd is how with these internet companies we seem to assume a .com bubble mindset that these companies are steered like a ship by one person and when that one person points and says “attack” the company starts the legal proceedings. In actuality these companies are lumbering beasts that are on an auto pilot of sorts. Corporate policy does the steering automatically with over sight by the CEO and executives who reserve the right to use the break to prevent bad situations. The legal groups job, per policy, is to sue any one they think they can get money from. Now that Android is apparently over taking the iphone in market share it makes Google/Android the prime target for this business function to target.

    AndroidGuys so far seems to have the most level headed perspective of this as most other “news” outlets seem to be sensationalizing it.

  • Howie_in_AZ

    If Google had just used a normal JVM instead of their Dalvik VM this would be a non-issue, but Google hates paying for things — hence the reasons why they prefer Python and Linux, among other open source projects. So now Oracle/Sun says that Android violates Java’s write once run anywhere philosophy… which it does; one cannot take a .dex file and run it on any JVM other than Dalvik, and one cannot take a .class file and run it on a Dalvik VM.

    And yet somehow people are defending Google.

    Wow.

    • Jeff S.

      Really … Google hates paying for things? So I guess you have inside information to back this up right? Considering Google’s current operating cash flow is ~$9billion (FY2009) and they have been known for buying up company’s left and right…I’d say you are wrong.

      Not to mention … Java was once Open Source under Sun (who actually created Java). Then Oracle buys Sun, and now they are crying because Android is so popular, and they feel they deserve some cheddar. For what? They didn’t develop anything, nor did they contribute anything to its development.

      Yes .. I defend Google, because Oracle is wrong with their approach of this issue. There are better ways … have they even tried just talking to Google? I doubt it.

      Wow x 2

      • Howie_in_AZ

        Yes, Google hates paying for things technology-wise.

        Also, corporations don’t talk to each other over tea and crumpets. Both of these companies are for-profit.

  • JohnB

    Howie – Let me introduct you to wikipedia:

    “Dalvik is the virtual machine on Android mobile devices.

    It runs applications which have been converted into a compact Dalvik Executable (.dex) format suitable for systems that are constrained in terms of memory and processor speed.”

    And yet you are pretending the Dalvik VM has no benefit on smartphones over a normal JVM.

    Wow.

    • Howie_in_AZ

      Yay for Wikipedia.

      Dalvik may have benefits over a “normal” JVM… *at the expense of breaking compatibility with every other JVM on the planet and possibly leading to a fork of Java itself*. Surely your Wikipedia article discusses that, and surely you realize the problems of having Java fork. Surely you realize the issue of breaking one of Java’s core tenets — the ability to write on, say, Windows and deploy on {Linux|MacOSX|Solaris|etc}. This core tenet is broken with Dalvik.

      Let’s not forget that Microsoft tried to add their own Windows-only features to Java and Sun rightfully came down hard on them.

  • Marcus

    Pls refer to the link as it explains how Google gets around the issues of this lawsuit:
    http://www.betaversion.org/~stefano/linotype/news/110/