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Subject: RE: Oracle Javasoft vs Google Android trial begins tomorrow in San Francisco. Microsoft slayer David Boies represents Java
Oracle should lose this case, if justice is served. Oracle is claiming copyright infringement and patent infringement.
But Google did not copy any Java components controlled by Oracle and protected by copyright law, and most of the patents originally named in the suit did not survive re-examination by the patent office, nor are these patents that relevant to an Android implementation.
Android can run some Java code on a Google developed "Dalvik" virtual machine, incoporating some Apache Harmony classes (libraries) that implement some of the API's in the Java specification.
As these are separate implementations, not based on Java implementations from Oracle, this software doesn't infringe on the copyrights of the Oracle implementations, in any normal way that copyright law usually protects software. Oracle is taking the interesting position that the Android implementation (and specification) infringes on the copyrights of the specifications (written documentation), and the overall selection, structure, and arrangement of the API's (the names of the classes and methods, and the names and order and number of arguments). These are basic things like using sqrt() to return the square root of a number. They are claiming that the Android implemenation is a derivative work, deriving not from existing implementations, but from the specification. This is an unusual definition of derivative work.
Sun/Oracle also licensed a Java Compatibility Kit, which includes field of use restrictions, preventing the use of Java on mobile devices without another license from Sun/Oracle. If you want to call your implementation Java compatible, it must pass the tests in the Java Compatibility Kit, or you infringe the Java trademark.
But Google and Apache did not require or use the Java Compatibility Kit, and are not subject to the terms of a license to which they did not agree, nor benefit from.
If Oracle succeeds, this would have a negative effect on the perfectly legal and acceptable practice of "clean-room" implementations of anything based on published specifications. Imagine no one would be allowed to freely implement a compiler, interpreter, TCP/IP, HTTP, XML, ODF, W3C standards, ..., without risk of infringing some copyright or patent.
If Oracle wins, Android will not be forced to be 100% compatible with Java ME. The lawsuit is not about making 100% compatibility with any Java implementation, or calling Android Java. It's about an injunction on Android and/or recovering damages, hopefully as a percentage of Google's ad revenue. This is mainly about Oracle getting money for nothing.
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