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Apache Resigns From the JCP Executive Committee

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the I'll-resign-my-commission dept.

Java 136

iammichael writes "The Apache Software Foundation has resigned its seat on the Java SE/EE Executive Committee due to a long dispute over the licensing restrictions placed on the TCK (test kit validating third-party Java implementations are compatible with the specification)."

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Sad ... (4, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505394)

Sad that it has to come to this ... I can't begin to say how useful the Apache libraries have been in past Java development. Why reinvent the wheel and plumbing when Apache is providing really awesome libraries for free that cover much of the "grunt work".

I fear Oracle is doing far more harm than good to Java.

Re:Sad ... (1)

thammoud (193905) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505438)

This is for Apache's Harmony project that IBM created to piss off Sun. Most people do not use this project but rather use the OpenJDK or Sun's reference implementation. This has nothing to do with Apache's wonderful libraries.

Re:Sad ... (2)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505798)

No, it has to do with Android of which a portion is based on Harmony. It's a bit disingenuous to say that "Most people do not use this project" when everyone doing Android development indirectly uses it.

Re:Sad ... (-1, Troll)

Simon (S2) (600188) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507058)

"Most people do not use this project" when everyone doing Android development indirectly uses it.

Google should pay up for J2ME if they want to use Java on Android, or invent their own language (they should use Go on android if they don't want to pay for a Java license).
And exactly as the parent sad, This has nothing to do with Apache's wonderful libraries.

Re:Sad ... (2)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507586)

Pay up? For what? Java is Open-source. The Java license grants everyone the right to develop their own "clean-room" implementation of Java and it grants use of the patents involved free-of-charge.
The Oracle/Google dispute is really over two things: 1) Oracle claims Google is infringing several patents in the Delvik VM. 2) The Android platform contains copyrighted source code.
On the first point, Google disputes that the patents are valid, they don't infringe them, the patents are open-sourced, Oracle(as Sun) waited too long to go to court and Oracle is not being damaged by their use. On the second point, the supposed "copyrighted material" was part of a set of compatibility testing tools (not part of the TCK) and is not part of the standard Android SDK.

I agree that this has nothing to do with the other Apache libraries. Where I took exception with the parent was the single statement that most people do not use this project. This project (and the way Oracle dealt with it) indirectly had a great deal of bearing on Apache's decision to leave the JCP.

Re:Sad ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507766)

Read these links as you seem to misunderstand the patents/licensing issues somewhat:

http://skife.org/java/jcp/2010/12/07/the-tck-trap.html
http://www.betaversion.org/~stefano/linotype/news/110/

Re:Sad ... (1)

makomk (752139) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509140)

Java is Open-source. The Java license grants everyone the right to develop their own "clean-room" implementation of Java and it grants use of the patents involved free-of-charge.

No it doesn't. In particular, in order to actually be granted patent licenses for your clean-room implementation, it must be certified as conformant using the TCK. The TCK is closed source, costs money, and most importantly is only available under the condition that you don't release your clean-room implementation of Java as open source.

Re:Sad ... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507596)

No, they shouldn't. Google created Android because Java Me is ridiculously underpowered and not remotely innovative, let alone up to the task of achieving Google's vision.

Re:Sad ... (1)

Archillies (703008) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509060)

This is for Apache's Harmony project that IBM created to piss off Sun. Most people do not use this project but rather use the OpenJDK or Sun's reference implementation. This has nothing to do with Apache's wonderful libraries.

Sounds bigger then that to me; they will not be releasing future libraries of any kind to any java projects. Wonder if they plan to abandon java altogether.

FTA (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505440)

This breach of the JSPA was begun by Sun Microsystems in August of 2006 and is a policy that Oracle explicitly continues today.

Larry & friends aren't strictly to blame for this one.

Re:FTA (1)

interval1066 (668936) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505522)

Is this another "McNealy SNAFU", or is blaming him too easy?

Re:FTA (4, Insightful)

DrJimbo (594231) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506858)

Perhaps not strictly to blame but certainly a truckload more hypocritical. Before buying Sun, Oracle was complaining about the very policies it is now trying to enforce. Furthermore, regardless of who started this idiocy (of subverting the TCK, which was by contract ( JSPA [jcp.org] ) a strictly technical hurdle, into being an excuse to re-write the licensing terms in the JSPA), it is now entirely in Oracle's hands.

If you are implying that Apache has some anti-Oracle grudge, I think the conflict probably started after Oracle launched the first-strike by suing Google over its use of Apache's Harmony in Android (and other stuff. Oracle is being represented by BS&F who mastered the art of being unspecific when they represented SCO vs. the Free world). If Oracle hadn't violated the terms of the JSPA, their law suit against Google would have had no merit because according the JSPA, Apache was supposed to get an irrevocable, license to the very copyrights and patents Oracle is suing over.

If I had to dole out blame I would give 2% to Sun and 98% to Oracle.

Re:Sad ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34508848)

Sad that it has to come to this ... I can't begin to say how useful the Apache libraries have been in past Java development. Why reinvent the wheel and plumbing when Apache is providing really awesome libraries for free that cover much of the "grunt work".

I fear Oracle is doing far more harm than good to Java.

I fear that Oracle is doing more harm than good to everything it touches.

FP? (-1, Troll)

rduke15 (721841) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505400)

First Post? Maybe an oportunity to ask what this is all about?

Re:FP? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34505524)

It's about a programming language that everyone pretended was an open standard, and the reactions of various parties upon discovering that it isn't.

Re:FP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34505610)

No, it's not about that at all, actually. It boils down to IBM vs. Oracle.

Re:FP? (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505694)

No, it's not about that at all, actually. It boils down to IBM vs. Oracle.

Not any more... IBM has sided with Oracle against Apache (and, by extension, Google).

Re:FP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34506374)

So, in other words, just what the GGP said.

Background (5, Informative)

HRbnjR (12398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505830)

My understanding is this...

Long before Java was GPL'd through OpenJDK, Sun was trying to claim that it was an open standard, and published specifications for the JVM, etc - kinda how Microsoft does with .NET. The dirty secret was that they also held patents on the technology, so they could still sue you for implementing their spec. If you want access to the patent grant - you can have that too, for free even, provided your implementation of Java passes the compatibility kit (TCK) tests (which disallows sub-setting). Those tests are the problem though - they are decidedly NOT open source, and you can only get access to them if you follow Sun's rules, like not building a mobile device and a bunch of crap like that. Apache (with help from IBM) has implemented those "open" specs via the Harmony project, but all the TCK rules make them mad.

Separate from all that, Sun then went and GPL'd the whole thing as OpenJDK. You can do anything with OpenJDK that you can do with any other GPL code - an important thing to remember in all this. Rumor has it, the GPLv2 license may even grant you some implicit protection against any patents Sun has on the technology - at the very least they would have a hard time suing you for building something based on OpenJDK as long as you adhere to the GPL

Unfortunately, Android isn't based on OpenJDK, it's based on Harmony, so it doesn't have any protection from Sun/Oracle's patents on Java (which also may apply to many virtual machines for other languages), so they are getting sued.

Re:Background (-1, Troll)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506604)

And your understanding is wrong!

Sun NEVER claimed Java was an open standard. Neither did Microsoft with .NET. Do some freakin' research you moron.

It was the open source community that whined to Sun about making Java open.

Google is no saint here. They piss all over Java any chance they get. Google wanted a ready made programming audience and they chose Java developers. Google will drop Java when their own language is ready.

Re:Background (1)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507860)

Java (OpenJDK) is licensed under GPLv2. This is a fact, and most (reasonable people) would consider this open source.

http://openjdk.java.net/legal/

Sun kept the field of use restrictions in place to keep anyone (e.g. Microsoft) from forking it and fragmenting the community. Unfortunately Oracle has chosen to use this to try and strong-arm Google and get their piece of the mobile market (since JavaME was such a dismal failure). Google is no saint, it's true, but in my view they are far less "evil" than Oracle.

Re:Background (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507932)

In the world of patents, "open source" does not necessarily imply "open standard", and the latter is what GP was talking about.

Re:Background (1)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509128)

Java (OpenJDK) is licensed under GPLv2. This is a fact, and most (reasonable people) would consider this open source.

open source != open standard

Re:Background (1)

t2t10 (1909766) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507380)

Oracle is not bound by the terms of the GPL since they hold there copyright to the entire source. So, I'm not sure why people think that theGPL gives then any patent protection from Oracle.

Re:Background (1)

alexborges (313924) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507604)

If they released as GPL, their patent claims become invalid for derivative works of *that* (and none other) release.

Re:Background (1)

Late Adopter (1492849) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507862)

The GPL doesn't bind Oracle to any particular behavior, but it does serve as explicit and implicit permission to others for a particular class of behavior, some of which may be access to related patents.

Re:Background (3, Interesting)

mysidia (191772) | more than 3 years ago | (#34508000)

Oracle is not bound by the terms of the GPL since they hold there copyright to the entire source. So, I'm not sure why people think that theGPL gives then any patent protection from Oracle.

Because the GPL'd work was created/distributed by the patent holder. When you distribute a product that contains a patented element, you cannot sue your own customer that you distributed the item to.

When you give your customer your product, and as patent holder you give them a license (the GPL) that allows them to distribute it freely, modify, and redistribute freely, you do not enumerate which exclusive rights you are licensing. Because the GPL does not provide for listing the specific exclusive protections licensed, it only lists general rights granted by the licensor to the licensee.

There is nothing in the GPL which states that ONLY copyrights are licensed.

Some people might assume that the GPL only licenses exclusive rights provided by copyright law; however, there is nothing in the GPL that actually states which kinds of rights are licensed.

One could imply, that the GPL as an agreement confers all license required by the grantor to the grantee, in order for the grantee to be able to exercise the rights the grantor claims to grant.

For example, if you are a bank and rent out a deposit box, and your agreement with your customer states they will have keys for 24/7 access to their safety deposit box.

That implies you can't sue your customer for "trespass" because security found them in the entrance corridor to the room with their box at 10pm one night.

Re:Background (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507408)

I'd be curious when those patents expire...

My understanding is that US patents have a finite lifetime, so while Oracle can basically squash Java development until they expire, there's nothing that can stop OpenJDK's implementation of SE6 from being entirely unencumbered in 2026. And that's if there are patents they filed immediately on releasing SE6 -- for instance, if there are any patents from the initial release of Java, those should be gone within five years.

Whenever the patents expire, it will be at least theoretically possible to fork Java entirely -- just pick a version of OpenJDK that's unencumbered, fork it, and work towards whatever standard and test suite you like.

Re:Background (1)

alexborges (313924) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507626)

25 years in programming-language-development time is an eternity. PLs have been around for less than 70 years and we have thousends of them, the more popular (and even some of the least), continuosly evolve.

Inventing a new language is cheaper than waiting 25 years.

Re:Background (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507910)

Erm, who said anything about 25 years?

And while languages do evolve, even COBOL is still around, LISP still has features no one else does, C really hasn't changed, and C++ barely has.

The Sun has Set (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34505402)

I hate seeing the Java community tear itself apart like this, internal rifts have now become vast canyons thanks to the demise of Sun and the acquisition by Oracle.

Don't get me wrong, the tinder was plenty dry in the Java world but recent events have poured on the gasoline.

Re:The Sun has Set (4, Insightful)

bberens (965711) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506182)

I work at a nearly pure Java shop and last week attended a Java technology related conference (not run by Oracle/IBM). Not one single person there or at my work seems particularly concerned about the future of Java. If for some silly reason Java 6 was the last version of Java ever released I'm pretty sure I'd be writing code for the platform for the next 10 years and it wouldn't be the end of the world.

Re:The Sun has Set (2)

tomaasz (5800) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507824)

The question is not if Java is going to disappear in those 10 years or not. Of course not. The question is whether or not Java is going to go the way of the mainframe: still alive and doing well and making tons of money, but also a niche, certainly not taught in schools and only a matter of time for it to be replaced by a compatible and cheaper technology. By cheaper here I mean cheaper programming labour - something that IS taught in schools, so it's easy to recruit 100s of people to throw at a problem.

Re:The Sun has Set (2)

Midnight Thunder (17205) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506198)

I hate seeing the Java community tear itself apart like this, internal rifts have now become vast canyons thanks to the demise of Sun and the acquisition by Oracle.

Don't get me wrong, the tinder was plenty dry in the Java world but recent events have poured on the gasoline.

It also possible that this is case of the distrust of Oracle is far greater than that of Microsoft. Its possible that we are all being too reactionary, for something that is simply not that bad, but because we are talking about Oracle we need to look and the facts with more care and see what really is at play here.

JC Penney is outta luck now (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34505430)

JC Penney is going to have to look for some other platform to run their retail website now. Ha!

Re:JC Penney is outta luck now (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34505464)

JC Penney? Last time I was in there, seemed like they only had clothes for fat people. Imagine the disgust or perplexion on the faces of the outsourced anorexic chinese women making clothes for fat-ass welfare-check-cashing Americans.

TCK license (1)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505482)

What are the restrictions on the TCK license? I RTFA (and its linked pieces) but it doesn't seem to spell out the specifics.

Re:TCK license (4, Informative)

robmv (855035) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505602)

a good explanation at Stephen Colebourne's blog [jroller.com]

Re:TCK license (2)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505960)

Thanks. Looks like two sticking points:

- Replacement JVM, like Apache Harmony, disallowed through definition of "product"
- Can't be used in embedded, phone, etc.

Dang, I hate IP/legal issues.

Re:TCK license (1)

bberens (965711) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506226)

Wouldn't be so bad if J2ME wasn't absolutely HORRIBLE on any platform I've coded for it on.

Re:TCK license (1)

goofy183 (451746) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505700)

I don't have the exact language but it is a "Field of Use" restriction such that any implementation that uses the TCK must stipulate in its license that it cannot be used in embedded systems and a few other places. That sort of restriction is not compatible with the Apache license or really any other OSS license from what I've read. Essentially that FoU restriction was added to specifically prevent a competing open source Java implementation, specifically Harmony since it isn't like writing a TCK compliant Java implementation is a trivial task and there were going to be a ton of Java implementations diluting the space.

Re:TCK license (1)

medv4380 (1604309) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505804)

Well First I think the summary at least has the name of the TCK wrong. I was under the impression that it was called the Technology Compatibility Kit [wikipedia.com] , but I and wiki could be wrong. In part the TCK puts patent restrictions on the developer. The major restriction that you get is you cant make your JVM that works on a mobile platform, like a cell phone. This is actually the main sticking point but I'm sure there are lots of other restrictions as well.

Apache is out of the JCP only (4, Insightful)

lehphyro (1465921) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505578)

We'll still get great java and other JVM based language libraries from Apache.

Re:Apache is out of the JCP only (2)

durdur (252098) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505958)

True, but maybe not a JDK (Harmony). Also, ticking off one of the largest organizations using, developing, supporting and popularizing Java applications, can't be good for the future of the platform.

Re:Apache is out of the JCP only (3, Informative)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506086)

Also, ticking off one of the largest organizations using, developing, supporting and popularizing Java applications, can't be good for the future of the platform.

Two... you forgot Google.

Actually, I wonder if Google will leave the JCP as well.

Re:Apache is out of the JCP only (1)

smartr (1035324) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506284)

I doubt VMWare (which owns SpringSource) is very happy on the matter.

Re:Apache is out of the JCP only (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34509004)

If there Java Specification Participation Agreement is being breached by Sun/Oracle, I hope Google does not simply leave the JCP, but retaliate with legal action. We know Apache will not do that because as an open source foundation legal attacks is not in their DNA, and still that will be expensive, but after that attacks from Oracle to the OSS community including Android, Google should definitely do it

Re:Apache is out of the JCP only (2)

rdean400 (322321) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507650)

I dunno.... Many specs are greatly helped by the presence of Apache members on the expert group. This isn't going to happen anymore. Apache didn't just resign from the EC, they resigned from the JCP itself and pulled all of their EG members.

Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505666)

Here's my appeal: I would like to know what this really means for Java, Dalvik and of course Android. A good, balanced and sensible analysis will be appreciated.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (3, Interesting)

Delirium Tremens (214596) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505978)

It means that Oracle controls Java on embedded devices. Google can not take Harmony and have it run its Java apps in the next Android OS. Instead, Google has to say Pretty Please to Oracle first, and then buy the binary or source code license from them.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506088)

Or hopefully use a different language and not pay Oracle a dime. Use python or go or something.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (2)

nickmalthus (972450) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506538)

Maybe google will now seriously invest in developing a new language that delivers on the promise of openness that sun/jcp always talked about but never delivered upon. Of course there is always c++

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506828)

Why not Python?

Portable Bytecodes? Check
Open-Source? Check
Open-governance? Check
Easy to learn? Check
Good performance? Check

Is there something wrong with Python that a new language is necessary?

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34506984)

Is there something wrong with Python that a new language is necessary?

Yes, whitespace should never be syntactically significant.

It also doesn't have a Wirth-ian syntax, so it's got a different learning curve. My exposure to Python is that it's crap.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507104)

"Yes, whitespace should never be syntactically significant."

Well, ok, I can buy that argument. I've not programmed much in Python, yet. It looked like an OK language, but I have often wondered how many hard-to-debug errors might arise because of improper indenting.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507722)

The answer is "None". Probably. I certainly haven't had any.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (2)

Requiem18th (742389) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507762)

I develop a lot in python, and can tell you that no you don't see many bugs due improper indenting, at most it requires some manual adjusting to fix someone's code if he doesn't indent like the rest of the team, as long as everybody in you team uses the same indentation (which is why a 4 spaces community standard exists regardless how you feel about spaces) you shouldn't get any problems.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507294)

Don't care about Wirth's syntax; it shouldn't take any decent programmer more than a weekend to get accustomed to other variants.

However, I am flabbergasted that anybody puts up with how Python deals with whitespace. Who thought that could EVER be a good idea? No matter how many good features Python may have, that ridiculous design kills the language.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

alexborges (313924) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507652)

Good programmers dont go crying to mama when they have to learn a few tricks.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507946)

Most (if not all) of Oracle's patent infringement claims are directed to the Dalvik VM. This has nothing to do with the language used. In fact, if you like Python, you can use Jython on the JVM (and hence on the Dalvik VM) today. Same goes for Ruby (JRuby), Elang (Eljang) as well as several other languages.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509170)

Yeah, Except why would Google want to keep Dalvik if it infringes Java patents? If you're replacing one VM with another, why not the Python VM? If they can do Python to Java Bytecodes, why not the other way round? Then people who hate Python's syntax could keep developing in the Java language with the Python VM, and you probably could also get a pretty big level of backwards compatibility.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (2)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509666)

Yeah, Except why would Google want to keep Dalvik if it infringes Java patents? If you're replacing one VM with another, why not the Python VM? If they can do Python to Java Bytecodes, why not the other way round? Then people who hate Python's syntax could keep developing in the Java language with the Python VM, and you probably could also get a pretty big level of backwards compatibility.

The patents in question could just as easily apply to a Python VM. If it were that easy, Google could just rewrite the "patent offending" portions of the Dalvik VM (assuming there are any). The Dalvik VM is drastically different than a standard JVM (i.e. Dalvik is register based while JVM is stack based, Dalvik uses a drastically different executable format, very much unlike the JVM class format, etc). The problem is that the patents are broad enough that they can apply to nearly any VM.

The main point I was trying to make is that the source language is not at issue, it's the VM. Whether it's a Python or Java compiler that generates the byte-code is immaterial to the issue.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506644)

Google doesn't give a flying fuck about Java. They only used Java developers for the apps. They are implementing their own language which will be used to develop for Android.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507272)

Citation needed.

Unless you're claiming Android isn't currently based on Java?

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

ChunderDownunder (709234) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507086)

Android isn't striving for compliance, so Apache's spat with Sun about Java SE compatibility has absolutely no impact.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (4, Interesting)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506046)

For Java, it means what has been speculated all along has now been confirmed, that Java is NOT an open standard and is in fact controlled by one company, Oracle. This was of course, the same situation while under the control of Sun, but Sun was a bit less "evil" in that they did not enforce the restrictions. Not surprisingly, Oracle is a different beast. It's too early to tell what the long term implications will be, but a lot has to do with the outcome of the Oracle/Google case.

This of course, brings us to Android. Depending on the outcome of the Oracle/Google legal maneuvering, Android could be killed off (or retooled to remove Harmony from the equation), or Oracle's restrictions and/or patents could be vacated. Most likely the result will be something in between, where Android lives on, but is subject to the indirect control of Oracle. Of course, the IDEAL situation (the one I'm rooting for) is that Google wins. This would, in effect free Java from Oracle's greedy control and allow Android to develop into the truly remarkable platform it has the potential to become.

(Disclaimer: IANAL nor a tech analyst and I have no particular insight, other than I tend to follow this story, so my views are my own as a simple small time developer).

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (-1, Troll)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506718)

Are you people intentionally stupid.

Java was a temporary measure for Android. Google does not need Java. Hell Google does not like Java. Java was a means to an end for Google, nothing more.

The legal battle is simple posturing. Two corporations trying to work out a deal. Google is not going to take down the patent system. Google is not trying to over turn any Oracle patents.

When the time is right Google will switch to their own language, Google Go, and Java will be history for Android.

Idiots!

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507140)

Are you people intentionally stupid.

Are you intentionally an asshole? This is at least your second post in this thread which would indicate so.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (2)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507410)

While resorting to name calling is the sign of a weak mind and/or weak argument, it's apparent from the rest of your post that you, my friend are the one with an intelligence deficit.
For that reason, I'll spell this out as if you were completely clueless (which nothing in your post would indicate otherwise).
You are wrong on so many levels, it's hard to know where to start, but I'll give it a shot.

First, Java was not a temporary measure for Android. Among other things, Java is a computer language. Android applications are written in the Java language. Even if Google declares Go the "blessed" language for developing on the Android, they will continue to support Java since nearly all applications up to that point will have been written in Java.

Second, Android is open-sourced (under the Apache license) and is not owned by Google. While they do have a great deal of control over it (mostly by way of their dominant influence in the project), they are part of the Open Handset Alliance which controls the project.

Third, while I will grant you, Google does not need Java (however you defined "need" here), a statement like "Google does not like Java" is a completely nonsensical statement. I don't even know what it means for a corporation to "like" something. Google adopted the Java language because it immediately gave them an immense base of software already written that could be ported to the Android platform. Google's continued development and investment into the platform (Android SDK, GWT, acquisition of Instantiations) show no sign of abating.

Fourth, Google's response (to the Northern California District Court) regarding the Oracle suit makes the following points:
The patents weren’t valid
Android didn’t infringe on the patents
The patents had been open-sourced
Oracle waited too long to bring the suit, and
Oracle has no right to sue since it’s not being damaged by Android.

What part of "The patents weren't valid" do you not understand?

Fifth, as far as their "own" language (Go), only time will tell how popular it becomes.
According to the Tiobe index ( http://www.tiobe.com/index.php/content/paperinfo/tpci/index.html [tiobe.com] ), which tracks computer language popularity, in 2009 Go had just surpassed Pascal in popularity moving to #15, but in 2010 it has dropped to #25. Java has been #1 since the index started (in 2002) and it's rating increased again in 2010 by 0.14%. If Go is to replace Java, it' better get "go"ing.

Finally, my advice to you is to see a therapist about your obvious superiority complex.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

alexborges (313924) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507700)

Thats all okay, but I would point out that the complex, if any, would be of inferiority and not of superiority.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34509310)

Finally, my advice to you is to see a therapist about your obvious superiority complex.

IMHO, he strikes me as more intelligent than you.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34508362)

Google does not need Java. Hell Google does not like Java.

As a Google employee, I think you're the idiot here. We use Java for almost everything internally (Search, AdWords, Gmail, YouTube, Android etc.). In fact, I think you'd be hard pressed to find a company that uses more Java than us. The vast majority of programmers at Google are working on server side Java applications...

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (4, Informative)

JSBiff (87824) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506078)

Well, for Dalvik (and thus Android), there's a legal dispute between Google and Oracle about whether Dalvik infringes Java patents. As far as I know, copyrights are not in dispute. Google says Dalvik is not Java. If Dalvik is not Java, then the issues surrounding the JCP and TCK are completely irrelevant to Google, because Dalvisk is not Java. There's one other bit of important trivia: "Desktop" Java is nominally open-source. "Mobile" Java is a proprietary product which Sun/Oracle licensed to handset makers with somewhat traditional licensing fees.

The TCK is a conformance test that a JVM which wants to call itself "Java" and be officially 'blessed' by Oracle (and thus, immune from patent and copyright lawsuits) has to pass, and I believe that Sun and now Oracle charge developers a LOT of money to get and use the TCK. Thus, to have an official "Java" implementation, even though you don't have to pay for a license from Sun/Oracle because it's nominally open-source, really isn't free, because you can't be "Java" unless you pay up for the conformance test and then pass it. (Which, in my mind, means that Java fails the basic criteria for being open source - it's not really freely licensed, it's only licensed contingent upon passing the TCK which you must pay for).

If Oracle prevails in the Google lawsuit, it may be able to force Google to declare that Dalvik is Java, pay for the TCK, pass the conformance test, and additionally pay for Java "Mobile" licenses (or perhaps, that burden will be passed on to the handset makers, since the handset makers are more the 'point of sale' - e.g. I don't believe Google gets per-handset licensing revenue for Android, they make their money off of the tight integration of built-in apps with Google's advertising supported search and web services). Or, Oracle might settle for allowing Dalvik to be "Not Java", but demand a patent licensing fee from Google or handset makers for use of their patents, but acknowledge Dalvik as a seperate, derivative technology.

If Google prevails, and the courts don't find that they've violated any patents, then this Apache/Oracle JCP thing means absolutely nothing to Google, Dalvik, or Android. Dalvik will continue to be "Not Java".

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34506330)

This is really well stated, but I don't know of any attempt by Oracle to call Dalvik Java. Instead, Oracle is just stating that Dalvik violates their patents, much the same way that Sun got after Microsoft for violating patents with C#. Dalvik will _never_ pass the TCK, since it is a cut down, mobile implementation of "not-java"--something the TCK is specifically designed to prevent.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#34508336)

Well, for Dalvik (and thus Android), there's a legal dispute between Google and Oracle about whether Dalvik infringes Java patents. As far as I know, copyrights are not in dispute.

As well as claiming patent violations, Oracle alleges that Google illegally copied copyright-protected Oracle code. Whether there is any substance to those allegations I couldn't say.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (1)

ADRA (37398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506300)

I am not a member of the JCP, but in my eyes, it was established so that solutions vendors for things like Application servers or other tools use to enhance the Java language/platform were done with everyone's best interests at heart.

It was meant to:
1. Reduce the number of competing platform standards so that vendors and developers can focus on making the best products that fulfill a standard set of tools / features (J2EE, Struts, etc..)
2. Allow external parties besides Sun to make an impact on how the Java language/platform would evolve over time

This debate in the JCP has sadly been dragged out for so long that it makes many question if the JCP has any hope of functioning as an open steering body for an open language/platform when a single dominant vendor has effectively veto powers over anything that is or could be decided in the committee. The field of use restriction on the TCK just solidifies the business realities of Sun (now Oracle) trying to freeze competition away from areas that they were actually making money with Java.

My suggestion:
1. Release OpenJDK as it is, and pretty much leave it unfettered. Don't invest a ton into the really high end features like high performance clustering etc. Release the super JVM as a paid offering or bundled with Weblogic, etc.. whatever. They can even release a Dalvik version of the JVM since they have such a rich set of experience making Java fast on desktops.
2. Make the TCK available so that any implementation of the Java platform can legitimately pass the spec (Android would still fail, but then...)
3. Sign whatever kind of deal necessary to get Oracle and Google on the same page with one another on the -Java- platform again. My suggestion would be to add a new device profile for android and allow both companies support in steering the platform. Maybe just having the platform supported through a -functional- JCP or through open handset would be a good place to go with it.

Re:Somebody should tell us what this really means (2)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509024)

They can even release a Dalvik version of the JVM

Just an FYI: That's a little like saying "They can release a Python version of C" or "They can release a Windows version of Unix."

Dalvik implements an entirely different, incompatible, virtual machine system to a JVM. Yes, you can compile programs written in the Java programming language to Dalvik codes (and like a JVM, the Java programming language is the primary development language for Dalvik systems), but the same is true of .NET (the name of the Microsoft's implementation of the Java programming language for .NET is J#)

It has begun...barely (1, Interesting)

sticks_us (150624) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505724)

We're living in interesting times. It's obvious Oracle isn't going to be cutting people a whole lot of slack, here.

Maybe we should start taking bets on:

a) When Oracle starts requiring a per-core license for production JVMs, and
b) How many $$ per core that will be?

This might play into their strategy. We know they're putting some heat on Google, but maybe a move like this would buy them some leverage, say, against Salesforce.com (with whom they're engaged in an emerging, but heated battle [cnet.com] )

Re:It has begun...barely (4, Funny)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505806)

Maybe we should start taking bets on:

a) When Oracle starts requiring a per-core license for production JVMs, and
b) How many $$ per core that will be?

a) Real Soon Now
b) The square of the processor speed as expressed in Hz.

Re:It has begun...barely (1)

increment1 (1722312) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507012)

Oracle is very likely to always continue to release a free JDK / JVM. They have already stated this (along with mentioning that they will also continue to release their for pay JVM).

While Oracle may seem heavy handed with Java at the moment, it is worth noting that Oracle needs Java to continue to succeed. How many ASP / C# shops do you know that use an Oracle backend? Probably a lot less than the ones that use MSSQL. Oracle cannot afford for Java to be completely eclipsed by MS offerings, so they will not kill Java, rather they will push it to maintain pace with any other server side development environment.

On the other hand, they will extract money from big players where they think they can get it, which is why they go after Google and mobile implementations. The mobile market is not using any Oracle products, so it is not profitable to them unless they make money from it via licensing.

Tomcat? (1)

pak9rabid (1011935) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505750)

So, does this mean we won't be seeing any new versions of Tomcat?

Re:Tomcat? (1)

teknopurge (199509) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505820)

No, we'll still get tomcat goodness. There have been murmurs for a while about a massive fork taking place where everyone runs for the openjdk projects and ditches the reference implementations. Changing the licensing on Java toward the end of Sun's lifespan was the best thing that would have happened for the future of Java innovation.

Re:Tomcat? (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505898)

Changing the licensing on Java toward the end of Sun's lifespan was the best thing that would have happened for the future of Java innovation.

Or, quite possibly the worst -- if we end up with a bunch of incompatible JVMs, and Oracle screeching that you're not allowed to have OpenJDK because it violates their license ... well, then Java as a viable platform would be largely toast, wouldn't it?

Re:Tomcat? (1)

Massacrifice (249974) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506204)

I can live with a fork. I can live with OpenJDK on production servers. I can live with having to _port_ an OpenJDK-bound program to OracleJava for the sucker corporations who require it. I can live with Larry Ellison choking on his 10000$ per core reference implementation til he shits his Armani pants.

The Java community is much closer to Apache than to Oracle. Has most always been. The community has been developping it's own solutions before the official ones. And they're better, too. e.g : Log4J vs Java Logging. Spring/Hibernate vs EJB. etc. On a few rare occasions, Sun even had the common sense of officializing the community projects, like concurrent-utils.

The only question remains, how cleanly will lawyers let us do that fragmentation? If Oracle gets too greedy, or if the process take too long, we will certainly move on to another platform.

Re:Tomcat? (2)

VortexCortex (1117377) | more than 3 years ago | (#34507996)

If Oracle gets too greedy, or if the process take too long, we will certainly move on to another platform.

Oracle's already too greedy, and progress impeding, IMO.

I've already moved to Perl6 Parrot VM [perl.net.au] & Postgresql for my personal projects instead of Java and MySQL. I couldn't be happier! (Lets see Oracle sue Parrot as being a Java VM).

Re:Tomcat? (2)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505836)

So, does this mean we won't be seeing any new versions of Tomcat?

Last I checked, you can run Tomcat with the Sun, er, Oracle JDK.

This seems to be more about alternate implementations of the JVM itself, though, the more Oracle craps all over everybody else, the more I fear some of the goodness about using Java will evaporate.

Re:Tomcat? (1)

sticks_us (150624) | more than 3 years ago | (#34505980)

Is there a chance they'd try to monetize the J2EE/JEE container market (hey, they're holding the still-warm corpse of BEA) by being deliberately opaque with their JEE specifications?

Or at least, trying to extort or marginalize free/libre implementations as much as possible?

Re:Tomcat? (3, Informative)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506062)

Is there a chance they'd try to monetize the J2EE/JEE container market (hey, they're holding the still-warm corpse of BEA) by being deliberately opaque with their JEE specifications?

It's Oracle, of course they will.

Or at least, trying to extort or marginalize free/libre implementations as much as possible?

Well, following a link [jroller.com] that another poster so graciously provided, it would seem that:

To be honest, I'm surprised that the TCK license for Java SE 7 still contains any pretence that it can be implemented in open source by anyone other than Oracle. At least the restrictions are clear (and I suspect, but cannot prove, that very similar restrictions were offered for Java SE 5 in the Sun/Oracle vs Harmony dispute).

.
Earlier up in the page, he says:

The definition of a "product" contains what looks like an unusual part (highlighted). It appears that a "product" must meet three criteria beyond the basic ones:

        * "have a principal purpose which is substantially different from a stand-alone implementation of that specification"
        * "represent a significant functional and value enhancement over any stand-alone implementation of that specification"
        * "not be marketed as a technology which replaces or substitutes for a stand-alone implementation of that specification"

I believe that Apache Harmony would fail all three of these tests (were the project to try and implement this JSR, which they probably won't). Since a "stand-alone implementation" would be OpenJDK/OracleJDK, the principal purpose of Harmony is clearly the same (not substantially different), Harmony does not offer significant functional enhancement, and Harmony would be marketed as a replacement for OpenJDK/OracleJDK.

So, what I read is that Oracle basically wouldn't allow anybody else to make a JVM if its sole purpose is to be a replacement for the Oracle one.

So, yes, I think everything you ask is likely true.

Re:Tomcat? (1)

sticks_us (150624) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506288)

Interesting. Good points (and you made some good ones upthread).

So, stir in some dual-license JDKs [theregister.co.uk] and Oracle's set to shakedown the entire Java programming industry.

Let us never think RMS wasn't eerily prophetic with his Java Trap [gnu.org] warnings back in 2004!

Re:Tomcat? (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506222)

Is there a chance they'd try to monetize the J2EE/JEE container market (hey, they're holding the still-warm corpse of BEA) by being deliberately opaque with their JEE specifications?

How? Apache's problem with the license aside, the specs for JSE/JEE components are all spelled out in their respective JSR documents. As far as I'm aware, the interface files are distributable by third parties... since said interfaces only contain method signatures, this is hardly a surprise.

Ep...!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34506148)

of the GGNA I it. Do not share But suffice it

Bali Community Process? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34506324)

Time to rename the whole thing to Bali Community Process? (Bali is right next to Java)

Re:Bali Community Process? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34506512)

Time to rename the whole thing to Bali Community Process? (Bali is right next to Java)

How about the Oracle Says You Can Go Fuck Yourself Process.

That's about what it is.

What's the issue? (1)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 3 years ago | (#34506712)

I haven't been following the events here so far, and a little searching yielded a lot of words that I am not familiar with and not a lot of insight. Could someone explain what the issue is here?

As far as I have been able to tell, the focus is on the licensing terms for the TCK, and the TCK is a test suite for existing and proposed Java standards. Oracle owns the rights to TCK and will not license it to the Apache Software Foundation under terms that the ASF will agree to.

Assuming that I have that right, so what? It's Oracle's software; they can choose to license it as they see fit, right? I _thought_ that passing the TCK's tests was necessary for being allowed to call your stuff "Java", but searching the web, I didn't find anything that supported that. So, correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I can see, ASF is not being restricted in what they can and can't do.

What am I missing here?

Re:What's the issue? (2)

mswhippingboy (754599) | more than 3 years ago | (#34508140)

My (feeble) understanding is that the Java license grants the right for anyone to develop their own "clean room" implementation of the JavaSE platform, but to claim it to be "Java compatible", it must pass the TCK certification. However, in order to test for compatibility against the TCK, one must license the it from Oracle. Since Oracle refuses to license the TCK, the effect is that no one can legally claim Java compatibility. It's sort of a catch-22. One of project Harmony's stated goals was to be Java compatible, but without the TCK, it's illegal for them to make that claim.

Re:What's the issue? (2)

glwtta (532858) | more than 3 years ago | (#34508462)

Oracle owns the rights to TCK and will not license it to the Apache Software Foundation under terms that the ASF will agree to.

No, Oracle (and Sun before them) are refusing to provide the TCK under terms that are required under the JCP agreement, making the JCP a bit of a sham. And it's not so much that ASF doesn't agree to the terms, it's that they are incompatible with the Apache license, so they would not be able to distribute Harmony.

Re:What's the issue? (1)

Jartan (219704) | more than 3 years ago | (#34509488)

What you are missing is that Sun and now Oracle say that you can't have access to the patent grant for your JVM unless you can pass the TCK. Basically Oracle uses the TCK as a way to stop anyone from making their own royalty free java runtime.

Wah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507180)

We was out voted so we're going to pack out bags and go home!

Sigh...what we feared is coming to pass... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34507744)

I've been concerned about the future of Java ever since it was announced that Oracle won the bid over IBM.

I've always regarded as clueless the opinions that IBM would have been a bad fit. At least for Java, IBM would have treated it the way it needs to be: this licensing issue would have been resolved well. IBM has demonstrated that it knows how to interact with open source communities, and it's entirely possible that Java would have been spun off Eclipse-style, if not to Eclipse.

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