Larry Page leads as first witness in Oracle, Google IP trial

Larry Page leads as first witness in Oracle, Google IP trial

Summary: Google's defense team reiterates in opening statements that both the Java language and related APIs were free to use for Android.

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Following Google's opening statements on Tuesday morning, Google CEO Larry Page was announced as the first witness in the company's patent and copyright trial against Oracle.

Presented at the U.S. District Court in San Francisco, Page's testimony was actually a video from his deposition on August 24, 2011.

See also: Oracle reveals Java copyright case against Google (gallery)

Oracle attorney David Boies focused on a particular presentation on July 25, 2005, listing "Must take license from Sun" as one of the bullet points of the agenda.

The argument back and forth between Boies and Page was to determine whether or not this presentation was written and led by Andy Rubin, senior vice president of mobile at Google (a.k.a. the father of Android), and his team.

To back up Oracle's argument over whether or not Google executives discussed Java-related licenses, Boies presented this email sent from Rubin to Page shortly after the meeting:

My proposal is that we take a license that's specifically grants the right for us to open source our product. We'll pay Sun for the licensee and the TCK. Before we release our product to open source community we'll make sure our JVM (Java Virtual Machine) passes all TCK certification tests so that we don't create fragmentation. Before a product gets brought to market a manufacturer will have to be a Sun licensee, pay appropriate royalties, and pass the TCK again.

Sun has already permitted open source VM projects in non mobile areas -- areas where they didn't have a well defined revenue stream. Apache is an example.

Although Page couldn't identify what TCK stood for, the next witness to take the stand, CEO Larry Ellison, identified this as a compatibility test for Java programs.

When asked if there were discussions in 2005 and 2006 between Sun and Google "to transfer a license," Page hesitated, saying that he remembered "that there were deals discussed where we were going to make payment to Sun that involved a variety of terms." Yet Page couldn't recall any specifics about these licenses and terms.

Furthermore, Page and Boies disputed over the definition of a platform, and if Android and Java could both be defined as platforms.

Page wavered back and forth about Java being a platform, saying that "platform is a term that is hazy in my mind."

"People would commonly assume Java is a platform," Page explained. "I think Android is clearly a platform."

Nevertheless, Page did admit during one point in questioning that Java is "many things" including both a language and a platform.

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Topics: Oracle, Enterprise Software, Google, Legal

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8 comments
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  • this will expose this frivolous suit

    It's now clear that Google did not infringe and Oracle is trying to manufacture 'facts'.
    Even famous lawyers like David Boies fail when confronted with the truth!
    The Linux Geek
    • yawn!

      >>Page did admit during one point in questioning that Java is many things including both a language and a platform.
      I think Page failed clearly. Did you read the entire conversation? Is google freely giving away their income to everyone? If they give away all their profits, I see them as FSF, otherwise I see them like another corporate that is for profit and will take competition down if possible to please its shareholders. Read this "My proposal is that we take a license thats specifically grants the right for us to open source our product. Well pay Sun for the licensee and the TCK. Before we release our product to open source community well make sure our JVM (Java Virtual Machine) passes all TCK certification tests so that we dont create fragmentation. Before a product gets brought to market a manufacturer will have to be a Sun licensee, pay appropriate royalties, and pass the TCK again.

      Sun has already permitted open source VM projects in non mobile areas areas where they didnt have a well defined revenue stream. Apache is an example."

      Also this "When asked if there were discussions in 2005 and 2006 between Sun and Google to transfer a license, <b>Page hesitated</b>, saying that he remembered that there were deals discussed where we were going to make payment to Sun that involved a variety of terms. Yet Page didnt couldnt recall any specifics about these licenses and terms."

      Look at the statement "Page hesitated" in the above paragraph, that itself tells something beyond his knowledge at least. So who is failing the so called famous lawyer Boeis or Page?
      Ram U
      • Agree; Google's lies are exposed all over the place

        I honestly can not see how Oracle could ever lose this case.
        DDERSSS
      • that's just FUD and inuendo!

        If you really need the to see the whole picture, and not just some fragments cherry picked by FOSS enemies, you should follow groklaw, the only independent source reporting on this particular trial.
        The Linux Geek
  • Google Caught with it's #defs down

    Android is on it's way to costing manufacturers license fees...
    super-chief
    • keep dreaming....

      and waiting to see the '#defs', but Oracle will come up empty handed in the end! When the FOSS community stands behind you, you can feel good and reassured.
      The Linux Geek
    • and back fees to oracle for units already shipped.

      going to put a little more hurt on htc, sammy, moto, etc. Maybe between oracle, MS, and googles fees for services, android will end up priced above windows for mobile os license fees
      Johnny Vegas
  • Like another commenter on arstechnica...

    I hope *both* Google *and* Oracle lose the case. Unlikely. But they're both acting like brat children.
    fjpoblam