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Thursday, August 04, 2011

Oracle fails to crush open source

Oracle has repeatedly attempted to acquire it's way into the open source movement, each time charging and licensing technologies it had no hand in developing. Berkeley DB, Sun Grid Engine, Open Office, MySQL, and Java (JRE/JDK), are now all Oracle licensed technologies.

What is admirable is that they make no pretense of being "friends" of open source. They stopped releasing new versions of SGE, and transitioned to a closed-source system immediately. Similar moves are happening in other products at different speeds... with a "what the market will bear" approach.

It took me 6 months to move all my BDB code to SQLite, switch SGE stuff to condor. I never touched MySQL because of the InnoDB creepiness and I'm glad the decision has been vindicated... Postgres was the obvious choice. Oracle's falesly named "Open Office" has thankfully been forked to become the truly open "Libre Office".

The only thing left is Java. And there's nowhere near an adequate replacement. Open JDK is limited to a handful of operating systems. And Java itself may have some questionable licensing - Oracle may be able to seize the whole thing by the fistful.

I've despised Java from the beginning, mostly for it's poor architecture and the way it encourages bad coding (not as bad as python). Watching Oracle roll in and step all over it is, for me, merely another "I told you so" moment.

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