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  1.    #1  
    Oracle has sued Google for patent and copyright infringement, a surprise move that could cast a legal cloud over the growing number of cellphones that use the Android operating system. The suit follows Oracle's January purchase of computer maker Sun Microsystems, inventor of the Java programming software that is incorporated into Android cellphones and hundreds of other devices. Oracle accuses Google of infringing seven Java patents and related copyrights. It seeks unspecific damages and an injunction against "continued acts of infringement" by Google.

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  2. #2  
    If they get away with it, that will cut more into Google's profits.
  3. #3  
    Isn't WebOS also highly based on Java?
  4. #4  
    Yeah but Palm is too small a company for a large payout.
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by iTz Nicholas72 View Post
    Isn't WebOS also highly based on Java?
    Yes, many other OS's (and programs) use Java as well, lots of them on cell phones. Use of Java is not illegal, making unauthorized modifications to the core of Java is. Microsoft was sued for similar infringement, and lost. Here's the basics - Java is a virtual machine that runs the Java code (basicaly compiles it on the fly). The VM (basically) is supposed to run standardized code, but is specific to the machine it runs on. Thus, the code is transportable from on Java VM to another.

    When a company modifies their VM so it runs a unique set of code (which is what MS did), then that's a violation of the licensing agreement.

    From what I've seen of the papers, that's essentially what Oracle is suing over this time.
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by Weaser999 View Post
    Yeah but Palm is too small a company for a large payout.
    But HP is a big company with deep pockets.
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by iTz Nicholas72 View Post
    Isn't WebOS also highly based on Java?
    WebOS is based on HTML, CSS and JavaScript. There is a big difference between Java and JavaScript. Java, developed under the Sun Microsystems brand, is a full-fledged object-oriented programming language. JavaScript, developed by Netscape, is a smaller language that does not create applets or standalone applications. Much simpler and smaller than the Java vocabulary, JavaScript is within reach of authors who know HTML; writing full-fledged Java, on the other hand, benefits from experience with C and C++. Java and JavaScript share a number of vocabulary and syntax constructions, but the languages are intended for very different purposes.
    Palm m130 > Verizon Trēo 650 > Verizon Trēo 755p > Verizon Palm Prē Plus > TouchPad > Verizon Palm Prē 2
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  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    Yes, many other OS's (and programs) use Java as well, lots of them on cell phones. Use of Java is not illegal, making unauthorized modifications to the core of Java is. Microsoft was sued for similar infringement, and lost. Here's the basics - Java is a virtual machine that runs the Java code (basicaly compiles it on the fly). The VM (basically) is supposed to run standardized code, but is specific to the machine it runs on. Thus, the code is transportable from on Java VM to another.

    When a company modifies their VM so it runs a unique set of code (which is what MS did), then that's a violation of the licensing agreement.

    From what I've seen of the papers, that's essentially what Oracle is suing over this time.
    It's more that they wrote their own VM not modifed the Java VM. In addition, they are being accused of blatantly copying Java code into their VM rather than clean room engineering one.

    This was well known to have been going on five years ago, but SUN didn't have the money to fight the battle. Oracle on the other hand....
  9. #9  
    Our VP of IT at work told me about this when the story broke. He is a big Android fan and his main concern was that if Oracle makes their case, they could impose a large enough licensing fee for each copy (to get a cut of the pie) that Google couldn't absorb that fee and would have to license the product instead of keeping it free. Gonna be an interesting chess match to watch.
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by not-yet-pre View Post
    WebOS is based on HTML, CSS and JavaScript. There is a big difference between Java and JavaScript...
    All correct, but WebOS also runs a JVM.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by modeerf View Post
    It's more that they wrote their own VM not modifed the Java VM. In addition, they are being accused of blatantly copying Java code into their VM rather than clean room engineering one.

    This was well known to have been going on five years ago, but SUN didn't have the money to fight the battle. Oracle on the other hand....
    That's interesting to know, I didn't catch that from reading the small amount of filing I saw online; however, that filing was pretty vague.

    If this is the case, they (Oracle) have much more of a case than when Sun successfully sued Microsoft.
  12. #12  
    Like modeerf posted this is more about Google not properly licensing their virtual machine code.
    Palm Vx -> Treo 600 -> Treo 700p -> Centro -> Pre (Launch Phone 06/06/09) -> AT&T Pre Plus with Sprint EVDO swap -> Samsung Epic 4G w/ Froyo
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    That's interesting to know, I didn't catch that from reading the small amount of filing I saw online; however, that filing was pretty vague.

    If this is the case, they (Oracle) have much more of a case than when Sun successfully sued Microsoft.
    Google wrote the Dalvik JVM instead of using the official Java mobile edition (ME). While the Java standard edition (SD) is Open Source Software, the mobile edition is not, so Google thought they would get around it with their own mobile edition. Unfortunately, the Dalvik environment 'borrows' heavily from the official environment (i.e. direct lines of code lifted), which is a foul. Too bad too, since the Dalvik engine is several times faster than the stock version Sun wrote.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by Kupe View Post
    Google wrote the Dalvik JVM instead of using the official Java mobile edition (ME). While the Java standard edition (SD) is Open Source Software, the mobile edition is not, so Google thought they would get around it with their own mobile edition. Unfortunately, the Dalvik environment 'borrows' heavily from the official environment (i.e. direct lines of code lifted), which is a foul. Too bad too, since the Dalvik engine is several times faster than the stock version Sun wrote.
    You've obviously followed this closer than I have, what are your thoughts and predictions?

    I found this article interesting Google and Sun may **** heads over Android | ITworld - note that the article is almost 3 years old, but still seems very relevant. Especially note this part:
    Still, Google could run into trouble. If Google used any of Sun's intellectual property to build Dalvik, Sun could sue Google for patent infringement, Mazzocchi said.
    To tell you the truth, I didn't realize that Google claimed Android didn't run on Java, as a matter of fact, I've always thought that it did. To tell the truth, I didn't even realize that Sun was collecting licensing fees on the mobile version of Java.

    To their credit (and now Oracle's) it appears phone companies could get around the licensing fees if they released their code under GPL, but most did not want to make their code public.

    Personally, I think Google's got a bit of a problem on this one. I suspect that we're going to see something very similar to Microsoft's agreement - a phase-out of the engine, and substitution with a true JVM instead of their custom code.
  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    You've obviously followed this closer than I have, what are your thoughts and predictions?

    I found this article interesting Google and Sun may **** heads over Android | ITworld - note that the article is almost 3 years old, but still seems very relevant. Especially note this part:


    To tell you the truth, I didn't realize that Google claimed Android didn't run on Java, as a matter of fact, I've always thought that it did. To tell the truth, I didn't even realize that Sun was collecting licensing fees on the mobile version of Java.

    To their credit (and now Oracle's) it appears phone companies could get around the licensing fees if they released their code under GPL, but most did not want to make their code public.

    Personally, I think Google's got a bit of a problem on this one. I suspect that we're going to see something very similar to Microsoft's agreement - a phase-out of the engine, and substitution with a true JVM instead of their custom code.
    If the Microsoft case is any indication, Google might be in trouble. Microsoft ended up paying Sun 1 billion for that fiasco. Evens worse for Google, it's the same lawyer that worked the Microsoft trial.
    Palm Vx -> Treo 600 -> Treo 700p -> Centro -> Pre (Launch Phone 06/06/09) -> AT&T Pre Plus with Sprint EVDO swap -> Samsung Epic 4G w/ Froyo
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    You've obviously followed this closer than I have, what are your thoughts and predictions?
    Another long legal battle, a bunch of lawyers getting rich, and the technically inferior Java ME will win out over Google's Dalvik requiring some sort of large compensation on Google's part. If they're smart (and able), Google should just reverse engineer their Dalvik engine and only have to pay for the licensing to date.

    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    I found this article interesting Google and Sun may **** heads over Android | ITworld - note that the article is almost 3 years old, but still seems very relevant. Especially note this part:
    Yes, it was somewhat prescient. That was back in the days when Sun's relevance was waning fast and they were pretty much lashing out at everyone. Even though Sun made all of the Java SD code open source in 2006, they held off on the Java ME code. Maybe that was because the BREW business was really taking off and they made some money off the licenses? I don't know enough about it to say why. Google seemed pretty cavalier about the whole thing perhaps because they knew Sun had no teeth (and Google probably had the better, former Sun programmers working for them by that time).

    Quote Originally Posted by hparsons View Post
    To tell you the truth, I didn't realize that Google claimed Android didn't run on Java, as a matter of fact, I've always thought that it did. To tell the truth, I didn't even realize that Sun was collecting licensing fees on the mobile version of Java.
    Android does rely heavily on Java. Since Java is essentially code that is interpreted before execution, it has always suffered inherent performance penalties. Sun maintained tight configuration control the Java ME engine and was slow to respond to performance improvement suggestions from the community. Consequently, Google built their own 'interpreter' (Dalvik is actually a highly-optimized, real-time compiler) that runs circles around the Java ME interpreter engine. It's how they get the performance boost they have on Android phones and it's theirs to modify as they see fit to optimize that performance even further (re: FroYo). And the Dalvik engine is open source ... which is probably how Oracle got the proof they needed for the lawsuit (heh - makes Jobs' walled-garden approach more bulletproof in the 'code-stealing' business. ).
  17. #17  
    Is there a potential threat to WebOS?

    I'm really not sure how much WebOS relies on Java, but if Oracle wins, does HP/Palm face a threat as well?

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