Here is a link to a very interesting opinion post on how much money Google makes from Android compared to iOS. Estimation of the earnings from Android have been based on Google’s proposed settlement of the Java patents lawsuit that was started by Oracle. I found the numbers surprising and they are probably not too far from the truth.
A number of reporters visiting the Mastering SAP event in Sydney, Australia, wrote that there is a buzz among SAP customers who run their systems on Oracle databases to think about changing their database strategies in the future.
When asked about which database they would likely be migrating to in the future in an informal survey, the majority answered surprisingly: Microsoft SQL Server.
Here’s a quote from BusinessInsider.com that explains why this is actually not so surprising:
It’s attractive because it offers technology similar to SAP HANA (features known as columnar and in-memory storage) and its prices start at $11,000 per terabyte. It can run on comparatively lower-cost hardware such as new servers by Dell, too. Microsoft and SAP have been partners for years.
So why not chose SAP’s new HANA database then? ZDNet says the following about this:
When it came around to a discussion on HANA, there was much debate about whether customers will put their OLTP systems on this as yet to be available database. The question in my mind is whether there is any real advantage in moving to HANA which today, can provide huge speed improvements in analytic style scenarios. The answer is a heavily qualified ‘maybe.’ HANA’s columnar store thrives on complex aggregation queries but is slow when trying to replicate what amount to row store calculations where an Oracle performs very well.
Links to the full articles:
- ZDNet – Oracle DB under threat?
- Business Insider – Oracle Should Be More Worried About Microsoft Than SAP
Good news on the Oracle-Google-Android lawsuit. The final claim of the following ridiculous patent has been removed from the case:
transitory electrical and electromagnetic signals propagating through some medium, such as wires, air, or a vacuum
What the hell were the people thinking that granted this patent in the first place?
If you have time and are interested to read up on the Oracle-Google-Android lawsuit, then check out this extensive write-up at Groklaw.com linked below.
Business Insider has an interesting interview with Vishal Sikka, the SAP engineer that created the HANA database with his team of developers. In the first six months the HANA database generated $200 million in sales. And the claims in speed and performance are quite outrageous. Check out these quotes from the article/interview:
Given a chance, he’s happy to rattle off the happy customers who have already yanked out their old database and replaced it with HANA. He says that two such customers have become members of the “100,000K club” which means that HANA runs 100,000-times faster than their previous database.
One large Japanese retailer used to need three days to process its customers rewards program. With HANA it now takes three seconds.
“The son of the owner of company runs the IT department. He was so psyched he called me,” Sikka laughs. It actually took them longer — five hours — to calculate and verify the performance improvement numbers than it did to issue its rewards. The company can now offer its customers on-the-spot rewards while shopping in the store, based on the items loaded in the shopping cart.
This is hard to believe, but if it is only partly true, this could mean serious competition for Oracle.
Today I read the post linked below that talks about a rumor that Oracle is planning to buy webOS from Hewlett-Packard. HP became the owner of webOS when it acquired Palm and released the Touchpad a few months ago that used webOS as its operating system. Sadly for HP, this tablet failed miserably and only became popular for a short while when the price was dropped to $99 in the United States, resulting in a fire sale.
The post is a bit cynical when stating the following:
Oracle? How does that work, you ask? Well, Oracle has close ties to Apple, since Oracle’s CEO, Larry Ellison, was one of Steve Jobs’ closest friends. This explains – in large part – Oracle’s interest in suing Google over Android’s use of Java technologies. Since Oracle probably has some spare change lying around, a purchase of webOS and associated IP may give them some additional patents to sue others with.
I sincerely hope that a great, though unpopular operating system like webOS will not end up as ammunition in patent lawsuits.
An other post on ZDnet publishes the same thoughts and has some other views as well. The link to this post can also be found below.
Talking about a U-turn…
Oracle must have thought: “If you can’t beat them, join them.”
A few quotes from the article on Wired.com that I linked below:
Just four months ago, Oracle released a very official-looking corporate white paper intent on “debunking the hype” surrounding the NoSQL movement — a widespread effort to build a new breed of database that can juggle vast amounts of “unstructured” information in ways a traditional Oracle database can’t.
“The NoSQL databases are beginning to feel like an ice cream store that entices you with a new flavor of the month,” the white paper read. “[But] you shouldn’t get too attached to any of the flavors because it may not be around for too long.”
Last week, a few words sprinkled onto the OpenWorld website indicated that such a database was on the way, and with his Monday morning keynote, Oracle executive vice president of product development Thomas Kurian officially acknowledged the unkept secret, announcing that the Oracle NoSQL Database will be included with a new hardware system known as the Oracle Big Data Appliance. Big Data is the moniker du jour for the epic amounts of unstructured web data facing many of today’s businesses, and with the new appliance, Oracle is embracing not only NoSQL, but Hadoop, the other open source movement so often associated with the term.
This suggests that Oracle views LibreOffice as a hostile fork and will not join The Document Foundation as some had hoped. Since Oracle expressed earlier this week to keep supporting OpenOffice.org, this move is not surprising.
Good news for the OpenOffice community.
Google uses Java components in their Android OS that were built by IBM. Now that IBM drops support for these components and jumps on the OpenJDK train together with Oracle, things get trickier for Google.
My guess is that this lawsuit is going to take a very long time to come to a conclusion…
Google has filed a response to Oracle’s lawsuit filed in August, denying infringement on any of Oracle’s intellectual property. The company not only argued that it had not crossed any of Oracle’s patents, but even if it did, the patents should be ruled invalid and unenforceable. Additionally, Google said that Oracle shouldn’t be pointing fingers, as Oracle itself is practicing double standards when it comes to the open sourcing of Java.
Oracle originally accused Google of both patent and copyright infringement over its heavy use of Java in the Android software development kit. At the time, an Oracle spokesperson stated flatly that Google “knowingly, directly, and repeatedly infringed Oracle’s Java-related intellectual property” when developing Android.
According to Google, those accusations are completely baseless, and the company takes things a step further by pointing out that the “open source” nature of Java isn’t quite so open source after all thanks to Sun. Basically, Google argues that Sun had released much of the source code for Java 2 SE under the GPLv2, which “contributed to its widespread acceptance among software developers,” but that the company later required developers to demonstrate compatibility with specific Java requirements in order to obtain a license.
This news post did not surprise me at all. It was going to happen sooner or later. The fork of OpenOffice is called LibreOffice. The Document Foundation hopes though that Oracle will be kind enough to hand over the old name “OpenOffice” to the Document Foundation in the near future so they can continue working with that name.
A group of key contributors to the OpenOffice.org (OOo) project have formed a new organization called the Document Foundation to manage a community-driven fork of the popular open source office suite. Their goal is to liberate the project from Oracle’s control and create a more inclusive and participatory ecosystem around the software.
OOo was originally based on StarOffice, a product that Sun obtained in its acquisition of StarDivision in 1999. Sun opened the source code and invited the open source software community to participate in the project, but sold a closed, commercial version alongside. The project received considerable attention and is among the most widely-known open source applications. Several other major companies are involved heavily in development, including Novell and IBM. It’s worth noting that IBM’s Lotus Symphony product is based on OOo code.
There was obviously already some support for the idea of forking the OOo code base before Oracle acquired Sun, but the acquisition substantially increased the need for community-driven governance and helped to build swift consensus among independent stakeholders. There are a lot of unanswered questions about Oracle’s plans for OOo and there are well-founded concerns about the extent of Oracle’s commitment to openness.
The Document Foundation serves the long-standing need for a more inclusive culture around the project. The group is creating a fork of OOo called LibreOffice that will be distributed independently of OOo. The foundation’s steering committee is diverse and includes some key members of the OOo project. Corporate supporters include Novell, Red Hat, Canonical, and Google. A beta release of the fork is available for testing, but is not yet ready for production use.
Oracle has not yet issued an official response to the fork. It seems likely that Oracle will continue moving forward with its Cloud Office product, but it’s difficult to predict what kind of relationship the company will choose to have with the LibreOffice community. The fork diminishes Oracle’s declining open source credibility because it sends a strong signal that the community lacks confidence in Oracle’s leadership.
For regular end users of the open source office suite, the fork could potentially be a very positive change. It will remedy long-standing issues that have hindered development and lead to a stronger product with a healthier development community.
I feel a song coming up: “That’s What Friends Are For”…
Oracle Corp. announced on Sept. 6 that the database giant has hired former HP CEO Mark Hurd as co-president reporting to Oracle chairman and CEO Larry Ellison.
Oracle announced that Hurd has joined Oracle as president and has been named to Oracle’s Board of Directors. In his new role, Hurd joins Safra Catz as co-presidents under Ellison. Charles Phillips, formerly co-president with Catz, announced his resignation from the company on Sept. 6. Phillips’ departure means Oracle’s office of the president will remain a duopoly rather than a triumvirate.
Hurd resigned from HP in August amid a scandal around an investigation by HP’s board relating to a sexual harassment allegation and reports of fudged expense reports.
Following Hurd’s departure from HP, Ellison, a personal friend of Hurd, criticized the HP board, calling their move ““the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago.”