On Like Donkey Kong: Google's Schmidt Calls Larry Ellison a Sore Loser
August 26, 2013 11:20 AM
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Oracle CEO Larry Ellison
Mr. Schmidt points out that the U.S. federal courts have not supported Oracle's Android infringement claims
a federal court jury ruled
that Google Inc.'s (
) Android operating system had not infringed in any major way on Java, a furious Oracle Corp. (
) quickly declined its right to pursue lesser damages on its handful of successful claims, instead
pushing for an expedited appeal
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
. Even as that appeal approaches, Oracle has been taking the opportunity to snipe at its legal rival. CEO and cofounder Larry Ellison in
a provocative and wide-ranging interview
with CBS Corp. (
) television host Charlie Rose
blasted Google as "absolutely evil."
I. Eric Schmidt Fires Back
Mr. Ellison's harshly worded accusations of intellectual property theft against Google evoked those of late Apple, Inc. (
) CEO and cofounder
Steven P. Jobs, who in his final days remarked
I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple's $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong. I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product. I'm willing to go thermonuclear war on this. I don't want your money. If you offer me $5 billion, I won't want it. I've got plenty of money. I want you to stop using our ideas in Android, that's all I want.
Google is usually silent on such attacks, but on Sunday afternoon
former Google CEO and cofounder Eric Schmidt
his company's Google+ social network
to counter Mr.
Ellison's rant. He
II. Ellison Has a History of Rants in Losing Legal Battles
Mr. Schmidt shouldn't take Mr. Ellison's attacks too personally, though. Mr. Ellison -- like Mr. Jobs -- has long looked to use verbal attacks for a variety of purposes from
devaluing potential acquisitions
to trying to sway public opinion in federal court cases.
Intel Corp. (
) and Hewlett-Packard Comp. (
) have also born the wrath of Mr. Ellison in recent years. After
dropping support for an HP server line equipped with Intel's Itanium enterprise processors
in apparent violation of a contract the companies had, Mr. Ellison frequent voiced vehemence against HP. At one point he commented, "[HP's servers are] slow, expensive and [with] little or no software."
He called HP's "Superdome" server clusters "turtledome".
Oracle has lost cases to both Google and HP related to its 2010 acquisition, Sun Microsystems. These legal battles have provoked emotion rants from Oracle CEO Larry Ellison.
[Image Source: Getty Images]
But as with Google, his words may just have been sour grapes. In the end HP
triumphed over Oracle
, proving in federal court that Oracle had breached its contract. In the aftermath Oracle eventually gave up, agreeing in September 2012 to continue support for Itanium -- slow servers and all.
A final thing worth noting -- the HP and Google cases are somewhat tied to each other, as both involve Oracle's
2010 acquisition Sun Microsystems
, who makes both a rival to Itanium servers (Solaris) and who makes a quasi-open platform (Java) which Google's Android is in part built upon. In the wake of these losses Mr. Ellison may be more than a little bit frustrated that his $7.4B USD acquisition has failed to pay off amidst these high profile court losses.
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RE: Ellison is Wrong.
8/28/2013 3:51:11 PM
I hope so. I admire your optimism.
But I don't see much of a future for it. How do Oracle make money out of open source? They start close-sourcing it. I think MySQL and OpenOffice are evidence enough that Oracle will fork Java up somehow.
I can see the sparkles in the Oracle lawyers and business man's eyes when they think about how entrenched it is in the industry. I'm sure they're concocting methods to squeeze some $$$'s out of someone for it.
Like Pantene shampoo, it won't happen overnight but it will happen.
"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer
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