Cisco, Sun, HP tech used in Iran despite sanctions -- report

It is prohibited for any U.S. person, company, organization, or agency to have any sort of business dealing that involves selling goods or services to Iran, because of U.S. government sanctions.

However, today it was reported by Reuters that Iran's second-largest mobile operator, MTN Irancell, seems to have gotten its hands on mobile computer equipment from several U.S. companies, including Sun Microsystems, Hewlett-Packard, and Cisco Systems.

Though it's still unclear just how MTN Irancell got the equipment, Reuters has held several interviews and uncovered dozens of documents it says confirm that MTN Irancell wanted this … Read more

Judge William Alsup: Master of the court and Java

For several weeks, U.S. District Judge William Alsup showed that he was the smartest person in the courtroom as high-priced lawyers for Google and Oracle pleaded their cases. On Thursday afternoon, he basically slammed the door in Oracle's face, explaining in a 41-page ruling that the 37 Java APIs used in Google's Android platform do not fall under U.S. copyright laws. The ruling on APIs followed a jury verdict on May 23 that absolved Google of violating two Oracle patents.

Oracle was asking for more than $1 billion in damages, but in the end the jury … Read more

Solar plane midway through first intercontinental flight

Solar Impulse, a Swiss sun-powered aircraft, on Friday finished the first leg of its attempt at an intercontinental flight without using a single drop of fuel.

The solar plane took off Thursday from Payerne, Switzerland, bound for Morocco. It landed safely Friday on a planned three-day technical stopover in Madrid, where it will get a new pilot.

If successful, the 1,550-mile journey will be the longest to date for the craft, which last year completed its first international flight from its home in Switzerland to Brussels.

Pilot Andre Borschberg handled the first leg of the trip for the Solar … Read more

Don't expect a patent offensive from victorious Google

Today's jury verdict that Google's Android didn't infringe Oracle Java patents no doubt left many at Google breathing sighs of relief.

As Android programming evangelist Tim Bray tweeted, "F***ing A."

Google took this case to the brink, refusing to settle on either Oracle's copyright or patent infringement charges, and has emerged with minimal scarring so far. Some copyright issues remain unresolved, and there are always appeals. So far, things look a lot better than the prospect of the $2.6 billion Oracle sought. But it ain't over 'til it's over, as … Read more

Oracle v. Google: After the jury verdict, what happens next?

The real impact of today's jury verdict in Oracle's long-running and -- as we now know -- overhyped lawsuit against Google means that the case is basically over.

U.S. District Judge William Alsup of the U.S. District Court of Northern California dismissed the 10 remaining jurors, who served for about a month, and sent them home.

What happens next depends on how much more money Oracle CEO Larry Ellison wants to spend on litigation. Ellison could find a reason to appeal Oracle's whopper of a loss on its allegations of patent infringement. Or his attorneys … Read more

Annular solar eclipse goes global, social

The annular solar eclipse darkened the sun and lit up social networks this evening.

Instead of completely obscuring the sun, the eclipse, which began around 5:30 p.m. PT, created a golden ring around the moon's silhouette, giving millions in the western United States and Southeast Asia front-row seats to a spectacle that hadn't been witnessed in 18 years.

While the eclipse was expected to last about 3.5 hours, the "ring of fire" phenomenon was only expected to last about 4.5 minutes, depending on location. The best viewing, weather permitting, was expected to … Read more

Solar eclipse blazes a 'ring of fire' this weekend

People lucky enough to be in Southeast Asia and the western U.S. this weekend will have the chance to view the first annular solar eclipse of its kind since 1994, according to NASA. Rather than a complete blocking out of the sun, as seen in a total eclipse, a "ring of fire" will radiate from behind the moon as it passes in front of the fiery globe.

The transformation will begin on Sunday as the moon makes its voyage across the sun; at one point, as much as 94 percent of the sun will be covered, according … Read more

Much ado about former Sun CEO's 'congratulations' to Google

For the jury evaluating testimony by the cast of Oracle and Google in their ongoing legal slugfest, the blog post by former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz is one of the more prominent, and less technical, points of contention in the trial. In both the copyright and the current patent phase of the trial, the blog post has been central to Google's defense.

In his testimony, Schwartz stated that he had to grit his teeth, but saw no cause to sue Google over its use of the Java programming language in the Android mobile platform. Google's counsel played up … Read more

Oracle gets a chance to rewrite software law

Every now and again, a court case comes along that stands to rewrite the legal rules of the computing industry -- and we might just be at such a juncture right now.

Oracle's suit against Google over Java and Android could be one such case. It's putting to the test the notion that application programming interfaces -- APIs -- can be copyrighted.

In a partial verdict today, a jury gave Oracle a hard-fought "yes" when U.S. District Judge William Alsup asked it, "As to the compilable code for the 37 Java API packages in … Read more

Oracle v. Google jury returns partial verdict, favoring Oracle

SAN FRANCISCO -- The  jury in the Oracle v. Google trial rendered a partial verdict, favoring Oracle, in the copyright phase of the trial. Yet a question the jury failed to decide prompted Google to call for a mistrial, and could sharply limit damages even if the verdict stands.

The five male and seven female jurors failed to deliver unanimous answers to four detailed questions (see below) Judge William Alsup provided them prior to deliberations. The questions aimed to determine whether Google's Android mobile platform infringed on part of the Java programming language that Oracle acquired from Sun … Read more