Thursday, January 27, 2011

Another trip to court for Oracle?

Oracle’s case against Google for infringement on Sun Microsystems patents may have just got a whole lot stronger. Florian Mueller, a top software patent expert, has written in a blog post, saying six files show “the same pattern of direct copying.”

Mueller found this incriminating evidence when examining the Java code used by Google for developing the Dalvik virtual machine used in Android. Up to this point Google has denied the seven patent infringement charges related to Dalvik – and requested that the copyright infringement claim be dropped.

Ironically, these ‘new’ files are even more relevant than the ones Oracle presented as an exhibit in the trial. The six files apparently contain code used in the most recent Android updates. There is potentially more trouble for Google as Muller found warnings on 37 files – “proprietary/confidential,” and a copyright notice file that said, “do not distribute” on code that Google used.

"Unless Google obtained a license to that code (which is unlikely given the content and tone of those warnings) this constitutes another breach," he wrote.

Mueller sees this is all good for Oracle. “In light of the evidence I found I believe some commentators grossly overrated Google's defence when they interpreted it as accusing Oracle of manipulating or manufacturing evidence," he said.

Oracle has barely ‘presented the tip of the iceberg’ it may seem – but where does that leave Google? Gasping for air?

No comments: