Supreme Court rules in favor of Google in Oracle Java fight

Posted:
in General Discussion edited April 5
The US Supreme Court has sided with Google in the search company's long-running legal fight with Oracle, declaring Android could use APIs from the Oracle-owned Java.




In Monday's ruling, based on arguments from October 2020, the Supreme Court decided that Google's use of API code from Java was "fair use." The decision, which effectively overrules an earlier federal ruling that Google infringed on the code, allowing the search company to escape paying potentially billions to Oracle.

Google was accused of copying roughly 11,500 lines of code from Java SE's API for use in its development of Android as a mobile platform. Oracle believed this was an infringement of its copyright, prompting lawsuits.

In its ruling, the Supreme Court states Google's copying "only those lines of code that were needed to allow programmers to put their accrued talents to work in a new and transformative program" was deemed "a fair use of that material as a matter of law."

The copied lines of code were "part of a user interface' that provides a way for programmers to access prewritten computer code through the use of simple commands," the court reasoned. In effect, the code is different from other types used to instruct a computer to execute a task, a type of code that would have found more in Oracle's favor.

"As part of an interface, the copied lines are inherently bound together with uncopyrightable ideas (the overall organization of the API) and the creation of a new creative expression (the code independently written by Google)" the ruling states. "Unlike many other computer programs, the value of the copied lines is in significant part derived from the investment of users (here computer programmers) who have learned the API's system."

"Given these differences, application of fair use here is unlikely to undermine the general protection that Congress provided for computer programs."

The court also found that the lines of code Google copied was unsubstantial, with the 11,500 lines making up 0.4% of the entire API. Google had copied the lines only to allow the creation of new code for Android, "not because of their creativity or beauty."

The 6-2 ruling had Justices Breyer, Roberts, Sotomayor, Kagan, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh siding with Google. Justices Thomas and Alito dissented. Justice Barrett did not take part in the consideration or decision of the case.

The affair started in 2011, when Google was found to have used Oracle's Java code within Android. The discovery led to the start of a series of lawsuits over the next decade. A repeated lawsuit took place in 2016 over the matter, seeking $8.8 billion from Google based on Android's $21 billion profit to date at that time.

In 2018, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit agreed with Oracle in its claim Google's use of the code wasn't fair use, effectively reversing an opposite decision by a jury on the matter. At the time, the matter of determining damages was referred to a lower court, but a review of the Federal Circuit's decision prompted a review by the Supreme Court.

The decision doesn't end the lawsuit immediately, but it does effectively kill off any real chance of Oracle securing billions in damages from Google using its current copyright infringement argument.

Oracle and Google have yet to comment on the ruling.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 42
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,388member
    This sounds like a well-reasoned decision.  What Google did is roughly analogous to a composer copying two bars of a 200 bar piece to join two sections together (in a new work), or transition between them.   A copyright claim would be laughed out of court in that (grossly simplified) example.  
    9secondkox2watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 42
    A very, very bad precedent opening the door to stealing code from anyone by anyone. Just my humble opinion.
    dewmelkruppdigitol9secondkox2ronnwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    There is no doubt that Google's copying of Java without paying licensing fees gave them an unfair advantage over competitors who were paying those same licensing fees at the time.  It essentially gained them a mature app development platform and community of developers which Sun had invested a lot of money to build, without them paying a cent.  Which, in turn, made it easy for those developers to port their existing apps to Android and build a rich app ecosystem to compete with Apple (who had actually invested in their own app development platform).

    The fact that there aren't laws to protect companies which invest heavily in R&D against those which simply look for ways to work around licensing agreements is a sad state of affairs.
    Andy.Hardwakedigitolgenovelleronnwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 42
    cloudguycloudguy Posts: 323member
    Please recall that the original judge to rule on this case was a former programmer - as a hobby - and he called out Oracle's nonsense for what it was. Had the subsequent judges, juries etc. been required to take an online programming course Oracle's years long attempt to profit off Google's hard work would have been avoided. Keep in mind: Oracle was the same company who spent years claiming that the cloud would fail. Now Azure and Amazon both are making a mint on tools that will convert Oracle's byzantine legacy database into a much more modern cloud database for free

    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it. Sun gave Java away to nearly everyone for free because they wanted to create a standard Internet programming platform for front end, middleware and backend. Legacy companies like Microsoft, Oracle and Apple couldn't wrap their heads around the need for such a thing at the time. Even though they wanted to get paid and licensed, they were fine with Google not paying them because Sun wanted Android to succeed too. Yes, Sun wanted Android to succeed as an open mobile platform because their alternative as an open mobile platform had already failed. If Android wasn't going to succeed then mobile would have been split between proprietary incompatible platforms by Apple, Microsoft and Nokia. 

    Oracle made a bad purchase and tried to sue Google in order to recoup some of their bad investment. Didn't work. Plus, software development has moved on anyway. Java is now a legacy platform. The MEAN stack - MongoDB and Javascript frameworks Express, Angular and NodeJS - has replaced the LAMP (Linux, Apache, MongoDB and Python/Perl) stack. Also the people who would have been learning Java 10 years ago are now learning Python, Golang and Rust. Even Google has essentially replaced Java on Android with Kotlin (Javascript that compiles to the JVM). 

    Google delayed ARM on ChromeOS because they didn't want Oracle to cite it as a talking point. Now they are moving full steam ahead, licensing ChromeOS on Qualcomm (before it was only available on MediaTek) and also designing their own ARM SOC for use with ChromeOS and Android. They knew after the Supreme Court argument that Oracle was going to lose. All Oracle did with this nonsense was enrich their lawyers. Instead of wasting 8 years suing Google they should have spent that time and money developing their own next generation cloud database and programming language platform. Instead they bought formerly open source MySQL instead, resulting in pretty much everyone who used MySQL dumping it for any alternative they could find.
    dewmeroundaboutnowDogpersonmaximara
  • Reply 5 of 42
    cloudguycloudguy Posts: 323member
    auxio said:
    There is no doubt that Google's copying of Java without paying licensing fees gave them an unfair advantage over competitors who were paying those same licensing fees at the time.  It essentially gained them a mature app development platform and community of developers which Sun had invested a lot of money to build, without them paying a cent.  Which, in turn, made it easy for those developers to port their existing apps to Android and build a rich app ecosystem to compete with Apple (who had actually invested in their own app development platform).

    The fact that there aren't laws to protect companies which invest heavily in R&D against those which simply look for ways to work around licensing agreements is a sad state of affairs.
    1. No one was paying Sun licensing fees. Sun was giving Java away for free to anyone and everyone who wanted it because they wanted Java to be the basis of an open Internet platform that Microsoft was desperately trying to use IIS and .Net to lock down for themselves. 
    2. There are laws to protect companies. Sun didn't avail themselves of those laws because they didn't want to. Sun actually had an OpenJDK version of Java the whole time. Had Google copied the practically identical OpenJDK APIs instead of the "licensed but everyone uses for free anyway" Sun JDK APIs there never would have been a case. Google switched from the Sun JDK APIs to the OpenJDK ones as soon as Oracle filed their ridiculous suit, and it took 6 months tops.
    3. Didn't you pay attention to the trial? Sun's own CEO got on the stand and said the exact same thing. Oracle's counterargument was that they weren't obliged to heed Sun's FOSS stance retroactively. Which is actually true from a legal standpoint by the way. But that is totally different from what you are claiming. 
    4. Sun's own mobile platform was a failure. The only big customer they got for it was Amazon to make the original Kindle e-readers, plus a couple of companies who used it to make feature phones. Oracle's claim that Google stole Android and destroyed Java's mobile platform was false to begin with.

    Had Java not been free and open from day one, no one would have used it. Everyone would have used .NET instead, which is exactly what Sun didn't want. Good grief ...
    dewmeroundaboutnow
  • Reply 6 of 42
    cloudguycloudguy Posts: 323member
    A very, very bad precedent opening the door to stealing code from anyone by anyone. Just my humble opinion.
    Let me guess ... you have never been a Java programmer or anyone who has ever been involved in supporting, administering or maintaining a Java-based application. Correct? Because if you were, you would know that Java has always been free and that Sun - and now Oracle - only charges for support.

    You are also someone who has never been involved on the FOSS programming scene. If you were, you would know that APIs have always been treated as fair use. Just my humble facts. Which the Supreme Court agreed with. As with practically everyone else in the tech world who signed friend of the court briefs in favor of Google. The only tech companies who backed Oracle in this case were ... Google's competitors (big shock there). And even some of Google's competitors backed Google. Microsoft, who was successfully sued by Sun over Java in the past, even backed Google.
    edited April 5 maximara
  • Reply 7 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    cloudguy said:
    Please recall that the original judge to rule on this case was a former programmer - as a hobby - and he called out Oracle's nonsense for what it was...

    <a bunch of whataboutism>
    It's not nonsense, the problem is that there are no laws to protect technology.  The fact is that, at the time, Google's cloning and owning of Java gave them exactly what Android needed to beat their competitors (and catch up to Apple) at Sun's expense.

    Sure no one likes Oracle, and 13 years later Java is outdated, but none of those arguments change the fact of what Google did at the time.
    randominternetpersondigitolwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    randominternetpersonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    cloudguy said:
    A very, very bad precedent opening the door to stealing code from anyone by anyone. Just my humble opinion.
    Let me guess ... you have never been a Java programmer or anyone who has ever been involved in supporting, administering or maintaining a Java-based application. Correct? Because if you were, you would know that Java has always been free and that Sun - and now Oracle - only charges for support.
    Let me guess, you've only developed desktop Java apps?  Because, if you were working in mobile apps back then, you'd realize that Java was a very valuable app development platform for mobile hardware companies and OS creators to have.  Andy Rubin, in the Lindholm emails sure did.
    edited April 5 Andy.Hardwakewatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 42
    gwydiongwydion Posts: 1,083member
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was not Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop

    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    edited April 5 watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.

    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    edited April 5 randominternetpersonAndy.Hardwakewatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    cloudguy said:
    A very, very bad precedent opening the door to stealing code from anyone by anyone. Just my humble opinion.
    You are also someone who has never been involved on the FOSS programming scene. If you were, you would know that APIs have always been treated as fair use. Just my humble facts.
    A question for you @cloudguy : do you believe that the person or company which develops a piece of technology has the right to decide how others should be allowed to use it?  Especially when that use benefits those others financially.

    I have developed software for both open source and commercial use (many difference licenses) and this is one thing I feel strongly about: the right of the developer to make that choice.  Even if you don't like the company or the people or whatever, it is still their right because they are the creators.  I'd hope that most people who work in technology feel this way, but alas, as scientific and rational minds as we all seem to have, we still seem to get swept up in emotional biases against companies and individuals.

    edited April 5 Andy.Hardwakewatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 42
    gwydiongwydion Posts: 1,083member
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.


    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    No, Apache was not licensed, it seems that you have to refresh the case and what Java ME and Java Desktop was because it was not easy to port from Java Desktop to ME, I remember it.


    Legally questionable Dalvik? My God, you really don't remember anything, isn't?
  • Reply 14 of 42
    lam92103lam92103 Posts: 28member
    Oracle didn't even have a case here. Not sure why they were still fighting. Also, I feel we need to move past the copyright regime, specially for software. All it does is limit the industry and does not make any sense. The amount of effort needed to create a piece of art is not the same as creating a "Slide to Unlock" button. It would have taken a maximum of a few days of effort, to design, code & test.
    maximarawatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 42
    gwydiongwydion Posts: 1,083member
    A very, very bad precedent opening the door to stealing code from anyone by anyone. Just my humble opinion.
    No code was stolen
  • Reply 16 of 42
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 22,811member
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.

    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    "As part of an interface, the copied lines are inherently bound together with uncopyrightable ideas (the overall organization of the API) and the creation of a new creative expression (the code independently written by Google)" the ruling states. "Unlike many other computer programs, the value of the copied lines is in significant part derived from the investment of users (here computer programmers) who have learned the API's system."

    "Given these differences, application of fair use here is unlikely to undermine the general protection that Congress provided for computer programs."

    The court also found that the lines of code Google copied was unsubstantial, with the 11,500 lines making up 0.4% of the entire API. Google had copied the lines only to allow the creation of new code for Android, "not because of their creativity or beauty."

    It wasn't even a close decision:

    The 6-2 ruling had Justices Breyer, Roberts, Sotomayor, Kagan, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh siding with Google. Justices Thomas and Alito dissented. Justice Barrett did not take part in the consideration or decision of the case.

  • Reply 17 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.


    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    No, Apache was not licensed, it seems that you have to refresh the case and what Java ME and Java Desktop was because it was not easy to port from Java Desktop to ME, I remember it.


    Legally questionable Dalvik? My God, you really don't remember anything, isn't?
    Saying "my god" doesn't make your argument any stronger.  I worked in Java a lot over those years and have a very vivid recollection of what happened.  Perhaps it's you who is relying on emotional internet posts for memory.

    Andy Rubin (creator of Android) stated in emails that they would need a "clean room" JVM implementation to avoid legal problems.  They knew they wouldn't get one if they developed it in house at Google, so they looked elsewhere.  No one really knows the details of how Dalvik was first developed and whether the developer (Dan Bornstein) had prior knowledge.  That's what makes it legally questionable.

    As for porting from desktop Java to ME, yes, it was difficult if you had an app which was very much designed around the desktop UI paradigm (mouse interactions, menus, hover effects, etc).  But if you designed your app well and separated the UI from the core of it (algorithms and data management), then the majority of the work was in coming up with a mobile UI.  Especially back in those days when mobile hardware wasn't nearly as capable as it is today.  But regardless, you still didn't have to start from scratch in a completely different programming language like C/C++.  Which made it much faster to port.
    Andy.Hardwakewatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 42
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,236member
    gatorguy said:
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.

    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    "As part of an interface, the copied lines are inherently bound together with uncopyrightable ideas (the overall organization of the API) and the creation of a new creative expression (the code independently written by Google)" the ruling states. "Unlike many other computer programs, the value of the copied lines is in significant part derived from the investment of users (here computer programmers) who have learned the API's system."

    "Given these differences, application of fair use here is unlikely to undermine the general protection that Congress provided for computer programs."

    The court also found that the lines of code Google copied was unsubstantial, with the 11,500 lines making up 0.4% of the entire API. Google had copied the lines only to allow the creation of new code for Android, "not because of their creativity or beauty."

    It wasn't even a close decision:

    The 6-2 ruling had Justices Breyer, Roberts, Sotomayor, Kagan, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh siding with Google. Justices Thomas and Alito dissented. Justice Barrett did not take part in the consideration or decision of the case.
    Yay!  Technology creators rejoice knowing that, no matter what license you choose for the technology you create, if you take it to court, there are no laws to protect your work once it's reduced down to the minutiae of copyright and other laws which were created a century ago!

    I wish I had known this back when I graduated.  I wouldn't have bothered developing anything, I would have just waited for others to do it and worked on strategies for taking their work and getting rich from it.
    edited April 5 Andy.Hardwakedigitolgenovellewatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 42
    gwydiongwydion Posts: 1,083member
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.


    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    No, Apache was not licensed, it seems that you have to refresh the case and what Java ME and Java Desktop was because it was not easy to port from Java Desktop to ME, I remember it.


    Legally questionable Dalvik? My God, you really don't remember anything, isn't?
    Saying "my god" doesn't make your argument any stronger.  I worked in Java a lot over those years and have a very vivid recollection of what happened.  Perhaps it's you who is relying on emotional internet posts for memory.

    Andy Rubin (creator of Android) stated in emails that they would need a "clean room" JVM implementation to avoid legal problems.  They knew they wouldn't get one if they developed it in house at Google, so they looked elsewhere.  No one really knows the details of how Dalvik was first developed and whether the developer (Dan Bornstein) had prior knowledge.  That's what makes it legally questionable.

    As for porting from desktop Java to ME, yes, it was difficult if you had an app which was very much designed around the desktop UI paradigm (mouse interactions, menus, hover effects, etc).  But if you designed your app well and separated the UI from the core of it (algorithms and data management), then the majority of the work was in coming up with a mobile UI.  Especially back in those days when mobile hardware wasn't nearly as capable as it is today.  But regardless, you still didn't have to start from scratch in a completely different programming language like C/C++.  Which made it much faster to port.
    Legally questionable for you, for the jury and the rest of the world Daslvik didn't infrige anything

    And yes, you don't remember the case, perthaps the one blinded by his sentiments is you
  • Reply 20 of 42
    gwydiongwydion Posts: 1,083member
    auxio said:
    gatorguy said:
    auxio said:
    gwydion said:
    auxio said:

    cloudguy said:
    Oracle bought Sun - who agreed to let Google use the APIs and stated so in the trial - because they thought that they could make hundreds of billions of Java licenses. They didn't know - because I guess all their programmers were still using PL/1 and COBOL - that virtually none of the people who used Java paid for it
    Wrong.  Most of the major mobile hardware companies were licensing Java at the time (Blackberry, Nokia, etc).  You're only looking at the desktop side of things.
    No, that was noit Java, that was Java ME, incompatible with Java desktop
    It was still Java, it still used the language which a lot of developers had experience with.  Just because the APIs were slightly different doesn't change the fact that it was quite easy for developers to leverage what they knew and bring pared down versions of their apps over to mobile platforms like Blackberry and Nokia.  That's why it was valuable to those licensees.

    And Google didn't copied Sun, they use Apache Java implementation
    Which was specifically licensed for use in open source desktop software, not mobile platforms.  But obviously there was a loophole in the licensing which Google took advantage of.  Not to mention the fact that it didn't give them a JVM to run on Android.  So they had to go out and find a very legally questionable JVM in Dalvik.

    Why are we pretending that Google didn't know what they were doing was shady?  Andy Rubin's emails already prove that.  They knew full well that what they were doing would likely land them in court, but they did it anyways.
    "As part of an interface, the copied lines are inherently bound together with uncopyrightable ideas (the overall organization of the API) and the creation of a new creative expression (the code independently written by Google)" the ruling states. "Unlike many other computer programs, the value of the copied lines is in significant part derived from the investment of users (here computer programmers) who have learned the API's system."

    "Given these differences, application of fair use here is unlikely to undermine the general protection that Congress provided for computer programs."

    The court also found that the lines of code Google copied was unsubstantial, with the 11,500 lines making up 0.4% of the entire API. Google had copied the lines only to allow the creation of new code for Android, "not because of their creativity or beauty."

    It wasn't even a close decision:

    The 6-2 ruling had Justices Breyer, Roberts, Sotomayor, Kagan, Gorsuch, and Kavanaugh siding with Google. Justices Thomas and Alito dissented. Justice Barrett did not take part in the consideration or decision of the case.
    Yay!  Technology creators rejoice knowing that, no matter what license you choose for the technology you create, if you take it to court, there are no laws to protect your work once it's reduced down to the minutiae of copyright and other laws which were created a century ago!

    I wish I had known this back when I graduated.  I wouldn't have bothered developing anything, I would have just waited for others to do it and worked on strategies for taking their work and getting rich from it.
    And this posts shows that you don't know anything about the case and that you're blinded by your sentiments

    Are you really a develeop3er when you don't know what an API is?

    Or perhaps you think that Linux or Wine are illegal
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