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Monday, June 17, 2024 | Back issues
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Blame Cast for Delays to Google Android Trial

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - Oracle has no one to thank but itself for delay to the start of a trial that will determine whether the Google Android infringes on patented Java applications, a federal judge said.

In addition to twice submitting reports with unreasonably high damages calculations, Oracle has failed to dispatch Google's roadblocks, U.S. District Judge William Alsup noted.

Google is appealing inclusion in the record of a damaging email, but Oracle could waive reliance on the email if it really wanted the trial to start as soon as possible, as it claimed in a pretrial brief.

Oracle has twice submitted economics professor Iain Cockburn's damages reports, though Alsup said the reports "advanced improper methodologies obviously calculated to reach stratospheric numbers."

After Cockburn first estimated that Google could owe Oracle up to $6 billion in damages, Alsup tossed most of that report and Cockburn's reply report.

Oracle and Google must now brief the court as to whether it should let Cockburn submit a third damages report.

If Cockburn again fails to make realistic calculations, Alsup says he may exclude Oracle's damages reports altogether.

Meanwhile, Google's appeal is pending with regard to Oracle's reliance on an email in which Google engineer Tim Lindholm said the alternatives to Java "all suck" and that Google should seek a license under favorable terms. The judge refused to make that email confidential in November.

More recently, he rebuffed Google's request for more trial time. Attorneys for Google had argued that trying 26 claims of six unrelated patents requires far more than the allotted 12 hours per side and that the copyright part of the trial will also take longer than what Alsup plans to allow.

But Alsup said the time limits are "almost double the maximum ever used in any trial in the judge's 12-plus years on the bench."

"The judge is convinced adequate time has been allotted," he wrote Thursday.

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