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Quotes of the week

I couldn't have told you the first thing about Java before this problem. I have done, and still do, a significant amount of programming in other languages. I've written blocks of code like rangeCheck a hundred times before. I could do it, you could do it. The idea that someone would copy that when they could do it themselves just as fast, it was an accident. There's no way you could say that was speeding them along to the marketplace. You're one of the best lawyers in America, how could you even make that kind of argument?
-- Judge Alsup (Oracle v. Google) has a clue

Janet Jackson's wardrobe malfunction was merely notorious, whereas Adolph Hitler was an infamous tyrant. See what I mean? [...]

So that's why I switched it. I didn't feel that the Unicode bug deserved to be labeled as evil incarnate, a vile abomination deserving utter reprobation. I didn't want to be seen to make a moral judgment.

-- Tom Christiansen
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Quotes of the week

Posted May 17, 2012 16:51 UTC (Thu) by Jannes (guest, #80396) [Link]

Wow... I know it says so in the quote attribution, but this was so shocking that I was seriously doubting my reading comprehension. Who was exactly saying what?? I had to keep reading the source until I ran into this before my mind settled for acceptance:

"And did any of us guess that this judge can code? That is the biggest surprise of the entire trial, to me. No wonder he was able to comprehend the technical testimony. But it does make me wonder, why then is he having such a hard time figuring out whether APIs can be copyrighted?"

-- PJ

Quotes of the week

Posted May 17, 2012 17:57 UTC (Thu) by nybble41 (subscriber, #55106) [Link]

> "But it does make me wonder, why then is he having such a hard time figuring out whether APIs can be copyrighted?" -- PJ

This sounds to me like the comment of someone expecting APIs to be ruled uncopyrightable on the basis that the outcome of such a ruling would be patently ridiculous--and it would be. However, the real question here is what the law says. It may well be that copyright law, applied to API copyrights, really is that ridiculous, which would put this judge in a very awkward position. Should he side with the law, throwing the entire industry into chaos? Or should he throw out the law, and issue a ruling based on his own personal views? Either way, the ruling would almost certainly be appealed.

Quotes of the week

Posted May 18, 2012 7:30 UTC (Fri) by jezuch (subscriber, #52988) [Link]

> Should he side with the law, throwing the entire industry into chaos? Or should he throw out the law, and issue a ruling based on his own personal views?

It's not always like that. Once upon a time the law said (was understood to say?) that the owner of a piece of land owned the land and the space all the way up to the stars. But then the airplanes started to fly and someone sued the airlines for trespass. The court said the law is ridiculous and in its literal interpretation would cause unbelievable harm to everyone so it won't be interpreted that way.

Quotes of the week

Posted May 17, 2012 20:05 UTC (Thu) by munozga (subscriber, #26290) [Link]

> "We'll start with what's undisputed: Android resolves symbolic references. You saw this in the source code, in the comments. This converts symbolic references into pointers, which is exactly what we have in the patent. This isn't disputed. Google admits that Android resolves symbolic references. Google's documentation says "the reference takes the form of an integer index value", and they convert it to a memory address, which is almost exactly what we have in the patent."

I read this as if the Oracle lawyer is saying the notion of a reference is patented! I don't think that's what he/she meant though.

P.S. Am I the only one getting a kick out of jurors being read code comments?

Quotes of the week

Posted May 17, 2012 20:37 UTC (Thu) by apoelstra (subscriber, #75205) [Link]

>I read this as if the Oracle lawyer is saying the notion of a reference is patented! I don't think that's what he/she meant though.

I don't see any other way to interpret this. Specifically, the complaint appears to be that Google is interpreting references in bytecode and translating them into actual addresses -- much the way that C linkers have been doing for some 40-50 years now, or the way assemblers would before them.

The lawyer then tries to confuse what "static" and "dynamic" mean in this context, as though that has any bearing on it.

It is pretty clear that Oracle's lawyers have no clue about the technology they are talking about.

Quotes of the week

Posted May 18, 2012 13:40 UTC (Fri) by juliank (subscriber, #45896) [Link]

IIRC, Java resolves them when needed, and then replaces the original symbolic reference with the actual reference during runtime, whereas native linkers resolve references when loading a library, and adjusts them before actually starting to run the program.

Quotes of the week

Posted May 18, 2012 13:42 UTC (Fri) by juliank (subscriber, #45896) [Link]

See US Patent No. RE38104 (http://patft1.uspto.gov/netacgi/nph-Parser?Sect1=PTO2&...)

for further information

Quotes of the week

Posted May 18, 2012 23:35 UTC (Fri) by nix (subscriber, #2304) [Link]

No, lazy binding (the default) resolves code references through the PLT on first use. (Data references through the GOT are resolved at load time.)

Quotes of the week

Posted May 28, 2012 9:47 UTC (Mon) by Zenith (subscriber, #24899) [Link]

It is pretty clear that Oracle's lawyers have no clue about the technology they are talking about.
Indeed, just read this:
Judge: rangeCheck! All it does is make sure the numbers you're inputting are within a range, and gives them some sort of exceptional treatment. That witness, when he said a high school student could do it-- Oracle: I'm not an expert on Java -- this is my second case on Java, but I'm not an expert, and I probably couldn't program that in six months. Let me come back to rangeCheck after I've reminded the Court about the test files.
Six months to do rangeCheck, good god! :)


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