Oracle and Google battle over Android evidence
Oracle and Google are fighting in court over what evidence is eligible to be presented in the patent and copyright infringement case relating to Android's Dalvik virtual machine. Google tried to ensure that one particular document will not be entered into evidence when the court case begins. The document, called the Lindholm Draft, written in 2010, is said to read
What we’ve actually been asked to do (by Larry and Sergey) is to investigate what technical alternatives exist to Java for Android and Chrome. We’ve been over a bunch of these, and think they all suck. We conclude that we need to negotiate a license for Java under the terms we need.
But Google say the Lindholm draft should be subject to attorney-client privilege as Google's CEO asked for a mail to be sent to the company's lawyers on the issue. The drafts were, according to Google, never sent and only exist because of the autosave functionality of Lindholm's word processor. The lawyer's name is lacking as this would have been the last thing Lindholm would have put on the document before sending it. If the court accepts the letter as evidence though, it could present problems for Google's defence, possibly pointing to wilful infringement. But that would only apply should any of the patent claims by Oracle hold up. The question of eligibility is currently before a magistrate.
The same magistrate is also considering various disputes over discovery. Oracle have, according to a joint letter to the court, been unable to produce an uncorrupted copy of the Sun.com web site which Google wanted. Google also requested the documentation from Sun vs Microsoft – the anti-trust case that ran from 1997-2001 – which in total came to 827 boxes of documents; Google got only 174 boxes of un-privileged documents and wants to see more. Google also wants JavaOS source code from 1996; it wants to see if the '702 patent is implemented in that code as that could invalidate the patent.
In another development, Oracle has asked a Chicago court to compel Motorola Mobility to testify. Oracle says that it wants to see the Android code Motorola pull from android.git.kernel.org and how the company uses the Android dx tool. Oracle also want to interview a Motorola witness. Motorola is currently being sued by both Microsoft and Apple over patent infringement.
The discovery phase of the case comes to an end on 15 August. The jury trial is currently scheduled to begin on 31 October.