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08.15.07

Is Oracle a Patent FUD-Fighter to Be?

Posted in Database, GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft, OIN, Oracle, Patents, Red Hat at 3:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Back in March, Shane informed us of Oracle joining the Open Invention Network (OIN). Apparently, shortly after Google had complained about patent trolls and joined OIN to defend Linux, a new conspiracy theory was born. It comes from a lesser-known Red Hat clone company (not Cent OS or Oracle’s Unbreakable). Here is how it goes.

Now with the SCO vs. Novell case coming to a close and with the continued threats spewed by Microsoft about patent violations against the Linux community after the Novell deal, I’m left wondering if it can be, that Red Hat and its partners got wind of the emerging deal between Novell and Microsoft, which after all took month to accomplish. Can it be, that Oracle scrambled to Red Hat’s help, by producing effectively the same product? Because if Microsoft would sue Red Hat, they would be suing also Oracle which distributes the very same product!? Or at least Oracle would have good reasons to defend Red Hat. Was this a warning sign to Microsoft? At least it would explain, why the database giant started its own RHEL clone…

Several months ago, Matt Asay predicted that Oracle will become a legal guardian to Linux, even if it’s all done for selfish reasons. It would not be surprising given the rising tensions between the two titans. Oracle’s view on Microsoft isn’t quite so flattering, as the following video demonstrates.

In other news, a patent system reform seems to be under way, but scale appears to suggest that it is still experimental.

Currently there are nine patent applications up on the project’s Web site. In the first two weeks of the project, the project signed up 1,000 active contributors, according to Noveck. The largest volume of discussion, however, seems to be taking place on Groklaw. Noveck welcomes other communities to get involved, talk about the applications, do research, and share information with the USPTO through Peer-to-Patent.

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A Single Comment

  1. MattD said,

    August 15, 2007 at 10:09 am

    Gravatar

    This is a very interesting take on Oracle’s involvement and one I hadn’t considered.

    It also makes sense to me since anyone familiar with Oracle’s CEO (Larry Ellison) is aware of his long-standing battles against Microsoft (though the press continues to personalize it as an Ellison vs Gates issue).

    An interesting 2002 article entitled “It’s Microsoft vs the world”, Ellison continues to rail against Microsoft (a battle that goes as far back as the early-80s):
    http://gnowledge.org/pipermail/fsf-india/2002-June/002540.html

    In it, he talks about Open Source and the benefits of standards. He also makes the statement “It’s the World versus Bill, and I am with the world.”

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