It now seems that the Oracle-Google lawsuit over Android patents and copyright issues could go ahead as soon as April 2012, thanks to some unexpected maneuvering on the part of Oracle.
In our last installment of the ongoing saga of this face-off between two Goliaths we were of the opinion that the trial could easily slip onto 2013. However, within a couple of days Oracle offered a surprise concession that had the effect of moving the schedule forward.
Oracle is the party in this lawsuit wanting a trial as quickly as possible and to try to achieve this it offered to stay its patent claims, focusing instead just on the copyright infringement and also waive its right to submitting a third damages report - the judge in the case having already dismissed too damages claims as being far too extravagant.
Although Judge William Alsup rejected Oracle's proposals of splitting the patent and copyright issues as "a piecemeal approach" he did respond positively by clearing the way for a trial in mid-April. Oracle is also going to present a third damages claim, having agreed to pick up the costs arising from it.
One setback for Oracle comes from new claim constructions of two of the six patents that Oracle is asserting against Google. In one case Google has persuaded the judge to adopt a broad interpretation of the meaning of the term "computer-readable medium" and in the other "at runtime" is to be given a narrow interpretation, which again will favor Google's case.
Meanwhile Google has suffered a setback in that it has failed for the seventh time to have the Lindholm e-mail, a potential damning piece of evidence in terms of copyright infringement, to be excluded from evidence.
While large open source software projects benefit from having thousands of people contributing, that openness also leaves them open to problems, as a recent spate of patches for the Linux kernel shows [ ... ]