Oracle Declares War On Open Source

Some days, it doesn’t pay to be a Java shop.  Oracle has discontinued OpenSolaris and is suing Google over making a Java fork for their mobile phones.  Are OpenJDK, mySQL, and OpenOffice next on the destructive rampage?

We like using open source.  We also like coding our Web apps in Java; it’s heavier duty than PHP/Ruby and more open than .NET – or at least it was.  We’re actually a big Oracle shop – we use mySQL for our cloud offerings but use loads of Oracle databases (and Oracle ERP) internally.  But it’s hard to interpret this as anything other than a series of crappy moves that will result in diminishing the ecosystem we’re trying to use to create products and Web apps.

It seems like Larry Ellison is really fond of the old Microsoft “I am your monopolistic corporate overlord” kind of business relationship.  Warning – if we want one of those, we’d use Microsoft; they’re cheaper and better at it.

It’s partly the fault of the open source “companies” – they willingly sell out to the corporate-overlord set (Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, HP, CA) and then, no matter what they say, they’re not really open any more.  Java was allegedly open sourced by Sun but now Oracle is suing Google for exercising that open source license on the basis of patent infringement.  Heck, a lot of the open source companies have instead become “open core” which is often mostly a lie.

So is Open Source already dead, and this is just part of the feeding frenzy of the big boys scooping it up?

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