posted on Apr, 20 2012 @ 09:51 PM
It seems that Oracle is claiming that Google used parts of it's Java language to create the popular
operating system for smart phones without proper licensing.
court document (pdf)
Oracle, the largest maker of database software, is seeking $1 billion in damages and an injunction to block Google from distributing Android, now
running on more than 150 million devices, unless it takes a license.
Google claims that they only used parts that are freely available for use.
Sun freely distributed the Java programming language, which has been used to create thousands of programs and applications by independent
developers and giant tech companies like Oracle and IBM. But Sun required users to obtain a license for using the Java development tools it created
along with the language.
Oracle attorneys contend that the 37 APIs, which would fill 11,000 pages if printed out, are protected by copyright because they are the creative
work of Java's original developers, who made deliberate choices to select and arrange the elements of each API.
Google attorneys have argued that unlike complete programs, the APIs are simply building blocks that are comparable to letters or words in a language.
In court papers, Google has argued that copyright law protects original works of "creative expression," but not the language or medium used to
create those works.
This could take years to resolve and I'm curious to see how this "clash of the titans" might affect the end users.