|By Maureen O'Gara||
|December 13, 2009 05:30 PM EST||
MySQL Session at Cloud Expo
Oracle’s reaching out to customers to defend its acquisition of Sun and its MySQL open source database has spooked alienated MySQL creator Monty Widenius and his spokesman Florian Mueller, both of them enriched by Sun’s billion dollar purchase of MySQL last year, into calling for “open war” between the MySQL community and Oracle.
Oracle has accused the European Commission, which is blocking its acquisition of Sun because of MySQL, of twisting the results of its antitrust investigation to suit its own MySQL bias by misrepresenting, cherry-picking or ignoring what users said about the market and the competitive scene and so Oracle brought a string of large accounts to its closed-door hearing before the regulator on Thursday and Friday to support its contention that the “great majority of customers” do not oppose the deal.
According to the Wall Street Journal more than 200 others are writing letters.
In response, Widenius, afraid that the EC will change its mind because of Oracle’s campaign, is asking the open source community to flood the EC with e-mails opposing the acquisition.
In an e-mail to the press late Saturday Mueller claims, without mustering any proof, that Oracle dictated the contents of the 200 letters. For his part Widenius has provided boilerplate for the open source community to use in their e-mails.
The Widenius camp, which wants the EC to force Oracle to divest MySQL, scorns Oracle’s resort to users although the EC, in its cockamamie process, questioned users to begin with in its investigation.
It also criticizes Oracle for reportedly appealing to customers with a wider interest in Sun’s future than just MySQL, which they might regard by comparison simply as a pimple on the ass of progress.
Anyway, this is Mueller’s e-mail:
“I’d like to give you an update on dramatic developments in the tug-of-war over the Oracle/Sun merger. Monty, MySQL's creator and founder, has made an urgent call on the open source community to send emails to the European Commission concerning the proposed takeover of Sun’s MySQL by Oracle.
“I’m not allowed to talk about the Oracle/Sun hearing that took place in Brussels on Thursday and Friday. What I can say about the case in general is that in my view the facts are just the same [as] they’ve been all along. But as Oracle’s lawyer even stated in public, they believe now that Europe will change [its] mind due to messages from big customers in favor of the transaction.
“It’s just that Oracle mobilized customers to write letters to the Commission and basically dictated the content by telephone. Based on what we heard from at least one such customer, Oracle apparently tried to particularly appeal to customers who also use Java and/or Sun hardware, and Oracle basically tried to capitalize on customer concerns about Sun’s overall future in case the deal falls through, while the European Commission’s concerns are only about MySQL, not about the rest of Sun. Monty just wants a solution for MySQL (the simplest and most effective one would be for Oracle to commit to sell MySQL to a suitable third party).
“In light of this aggressive campaigning by Oracle, Monty made the following call on the open source community a few hours ago: http://monty-says.blogspot.com/2009/12/help-saving-mysql.html.
There is already some initial Internet momentum even though it’s the middle of the night in Europe: http://bit.ly/info/66vFwm. (That’s just some statistics from the bit.ly URL shortener, which is popular but not the only that people use. Apparently people have already begun sharing it via Twitter etc.)
“I want to stress that this was Monty’s personal decision and it’s easy to see the difference between Monty’s writing style and mine. I continue to believe Oracle should, in the first place, never have started with customer-related campaigning around a regulatory process. I think a case like this should be decided entirely on its merits, not on the basis of mobilization, and I told that view to the Commission a couple of days ago. However, I can absolutely understand that Monty took this decision because he’s just too afraid that in the end some letters orchestrated by Oracle could make a difference at a decisive point in time. If the open source community understands it, it can probably generate far more messages to the Commission than Oracle has achieved.
“A few years ago I ran a campaign against software patents that repeatedly called on companies and the open source community to write letters/emails. But that was a legislative process in the European Parliament. I don’t think Oracle should have done something like that in connection with merger control, which is supposed to be a purely facts-based regulatory process. But they did, and now Monty hopes the open source community will show them how strong it is, how fast it can mobilize people and how this community stands together.
“Further below please find an example of an email that Oracle sent to customers a few weeks ago, asking to set up a conference call with someone in their US headquarters to discuss the acquisition of Sun. When people accepted those invitations to conference calls, Oracle then made all sorts of promises (neither legally binding nor truly useful) as to what they would do after the acquisition and once the customer reacted favorably, they then asked the customer to write a letter to the Commission to request immediate approval of the takeover. The email below was given to me by one such customer and of course I have meanwhile provided it to the European Commission in order to prove that this isn’t an independent outpouring of customer support: it’s simply an Oracle campaign. The email below is in German because that is the only language in which I have obtained it so far, but there’s every indication that Oracle did this throughout Europe, not only in Germany.”
[The e-mail below simply asks to talk to the recipient about his or her views on the Sun transaction – MOG.]
Von: [[NAME OF ORACLE SALES DIRECTOR REMOVED]] [email address: FIRST_NAME.LAST_NAME at oracle.com]] Gesendet: Montag, 23. November 2009 [[TIME REMOVED]] An: [[NAME OF CUSTOMER CONTACT PERSON REMOVED]] Cc: [[NAME OF ORACLE ACCOUNT MANAGER REMOVED]] Betreff: Terminanfrage - Gespräch zum Thema Oracle und SUN
Sehr geehrter Herr [[CUSTOMER LAST NAME REMOVED]],
Unserem Unternehmen ist sehr daran gelegen, die Einstellung unserer wichtigen Kunden zur SUN Akquisition zu verstehen. Gerne möchten wir Ihre Sicht zu dieser Transaktion kennenlernen.
Deswegen bittet Sie Herr Joakim Johansson - Director Corporate Development - aus unserem Headquarter in Redwood Shores um ein kurzes Telefonat von 10 bis 15 Minuten.
Wir würden uns sehr freuen, wenn Sie für dieses Gespräch zur Verfügung stehen und uns einige Terminvorschläge für ein Telefonat - vorzugsweise nachmittags - nennen könnten.
[[NAME OF ACCOUNT MANAGER REMOVED]], Account Manager für [[CUSTOMER COMPANY NAME REMOVED]] wird gerne die weitere Koordination übernehmen.
Wir freuen uns auf Ihre Antwort. Vielen Dank und beste Grüße [[ORACLE SALES DIRECTOR NAME REMOVED]]
[[ORACLE SALES DIRECTOR NAME REMOVED]] | Vertriebsdirektor Phone: [[NUMBER REMOVED]] | | Fax: [[NUMBER REMOVED]] | | Mobile: [[NUMBER REMOVED]] Oracle Enterprise Sales
ORACLE Deutschland GmbH | [[STREET ADDRESS REMOVED]] | [[POSTAL CODE AND CITY REMOVED]]
Below is the blog posting by Monty Widenius.
What he does not explain, as Groklaw does, quoting his submissions to the EC and thinking that Microsoft is behind them, is that he would swap MySQL’s GPL-based dual-licensing for so-called open-core licensing, “which combines closed source modules with the open source core software.”
Supposedly that’s why he wants an Apache or BSD license substituted for the GPL because, as Widenius told the EC, the “GPL license represents a particular obstacle not only to revenue generation by the fork vendor but also to the overall adoption and market penetration of MySQL, MySQL forks and MySQL storage engines.” And Widenius’ latest venture revolves around his MariaDB fork of MySQL.
Anyway, he says:
“I, Michael “Monty” Widenius, the creator of MySQL, is asking you urgently to help save MySQL from Oracle’s clutches. Without your immediate help Oracle might get to own MySQL any day now. By writing to the European Commission (EC) you can support this cause and make things much harder for Oracle....
“I have spent the last 27 years creating and working on MySQL and I hope, together with my team of MySQL core developers, to work on it for many more years.
“Oracle is trying to buy Sun, and since Sun bought MySQL last year, Oracle would then own MySQL. With your support, there is a good chance that the EC (from which Oracle needs approval) could prevent this from happening. Without your support, it might not. The EC is our last big hope now because the US government approved the deal while Europe is still worried about the effects.
“Instead of just working out this with the EC and agree [sic] on appropriate remedies to correct the situation, Oracle has instead contacted hundreds of their big customers and asked them to write to the EC and require unconditional acceptance of the deal. According what I been told, Oracle has promised to the customers, among other things, that ‘they will put more money into MySQL development than what Sun did’ and that ‘if they would ever abandon MYSQL, a fork will appear and take care of things.’
“However just putting money into development is not proof that anything useful will ever be delivered or that MySQL will continue to be a competitive force in the market as it’s now.
“As I already blogged about before, a fork is not enough to keep MySQL alive for all future, if Oracle, as the copyright holder of MySQL, would at any point decide that they should kill MySQL or make parts of MySQL closed source.
“Oracle claims that it would take good care of MySQL but let’s face the facts: Unlike ten years ago, when MySQL was mostly just used for the web, it has become very functional, scalable and credible. Now it’s used in many of the world’s largest companies and they use it for an increasing number of purposes. This not only scares but actually hurts Oracle every day. Oracle salespeople have to lower prices all the time to compete with MySQL when companies start new projects. Some companies even migrate existing projects from Oracle to MySQL to save money. Of course Oracle has a lot more features, but MySQL can already do a lot of things for which Oracle is often used and helps people save a lot of money. Over time MySQL can do to Oracle what the originally belittled Linux did to commercial Unix (roughly speaking).
“So I just don’t buy it that Oracle will be a good home for MySQL. A weak MySQL is worth about one billion dollars per year to Oracle, maybe more. A strong MySQL could never generate enough income for Oracle that they would want to cannibalize their real cash cow. I don’t think any company has ever done anything like that. That’s why the EC is skeptical and formalized its objections about a month ago.
“Richard Stallman [head of the Free Software Foundation] agrees that it’s very important which company owns MySQL, that Oracle should not be allowed to buy it and that it can’t just be taken care of by a community of volunteers. http://keionline.org/ec-mysql.
“Oracle has NOT promised (as far as I know and certainly not in a legally binding manner) that:
“ - They keep (all of) MySQL under an open source license
“ - Not add closed source parts, modules or required tools.
“ - To not rise MySQL license or MySQL support prices
“ - To release new MySQL versions in a regular and timely manner
“ - To continue with dual licensing and always provide affordable commercial licenses to MySQL to those who needs them (to storage vendors and application vendors) or provide MySQL under a more permissive license
“ - To develop MySQL as an open source project
“ - To actively work with the community
“ - Apply submitted patches in a timely manner
“ - Not discriminate patches that makes MySQL compete more with Oracles other products.
“ - To ensure that MySQL is improved also in manners that make it compete even more with Oracles’ main offering.
“From looking at how Oracle handled the InnoDB acquisition, I don’t have high hopes that Oracle will do the above right if not required to do so:
“For InnoDB: “ - Bug fixes where done (but this was done under a contractual obligation) “ - New features, like compression that was announced before acquisition, took 3 years to implement “ - No timetables or insight into development “ - The community where [sic] not allowed to participate in development “ - Patches from users (like Google) that would have increased performance was not implemented/released until after Oracle announced it was acquiring Sun. “ - Oracle started working on InnoDB+, a better ‘closed source’ version of InnoDB “ - In the end Sun had to fork InnoDB, just to be able to improve performance.
“It’s true that development did continue, but this was more to be able to continue using InnoDB as a pressure on MySQL Ab. “
Note that Oracle’s development on the Linux kernel is not comparable with MySQL, because:
“ - Oracle is using Linux as the main platform for their primary database product (and thus a better Linux makes Oracle’s platform better)
“ - The GPL code in the kernel is not affecting what is running on top on it (because of an exception in Linux).
“Because we don’t have access to a database of MySQL customers and users the only way we can get the word out is to use the MySQL and open source community. I would never have resorted to this if Oracle would not have broken the well-established rules in anti-competitive merger cases and try to influence the EC by actively mobilizing the customers.
“This is very critical to this AS SOON AS POSSIBLE as EC, depending on what Oracle is doing, needs to make a decision either on Monday (2009-12-14) or within two weeks. Because of the strict deadline, every email counts!
“What I want to ask you to do (until 2009-12-19):
“ - Forward this email to everyone that you know is using MySQL or open source/free software and to all email list where you know there are people present that use or care about MySQL and open source (please check first that this email hasn’t been sent there before)
“ - Alternatively send emails with information about this and tell them to read http://monty-says.blogspot.com/2009/12/help-saving-mysql.html
“ - Add links on your web site to http://monty-says.blogspot.com/2009/12/help-saving-mysql.html with the text "We are using MySQL, help save it", for the duration of the next two week.
“ - Blog about this (feel free to include this text or just link to my blog)
“ - Call by phone (don’t contact by email, this is urgent) your boss or VP and ask him to read this email and send a letter to the EC Commission ASAP!
“ - If you don’t have anyone to contact above, send an email to the EC! “As we want the EC to get a correct picture of the situation, we want you to first fill in the upper part and then choose one of the proposed texts belove [sic] that best matches your view of the situation. Feel free to supply your own text and additional information if you think this will help the EC to reach a better understanding of how MySQL is used.
“Send this to: [email protected].
“If you have extra time to help, fill in the following, if not, just skip to the main text. Name: Title: Company: Size of company: How many MySQL installations: Total data stored in MySQL (megabyte): For what type of applications is MySQL used:
Should this email be kept confidential by EC: Yes/No
Copy or use one of the below texts as a base for your answer:
a) I don’t trust that Oracle will take good care of MySQL and MySQL should be divested to another company or foundation that have everything to gain by developing and promoting MySQL. One should also in the future be able to combine MySQL with closed source application (either by exceptions, a more permissive license or be able to dual license MySQL under favorable terms)
b) I think that Oracle could be a good steward of MySQL, but I would need EC to have legally binding guarantees from Oracle that:
- All of MySQL will continue to be fully Open Source/free software in the future (no closed source modules)
- That development will be done in community friendly way. The manual should be released under a permissive license (so that one can fork it, the same way one can fork the server)
- That MySQL should be released under a more permissive license to ensure that forks can truly compete with Oracle if Oracle is not a good steward after all.
Alternatively: - One should be able to always buy low priced commercial licenses for MySQL. There should also be mechanism so that if Oracle is not doing what is expected of it, forks should be able to compete with Oracle c) I trust Oracle and I suggest that EC will approve the deal unconditionally. Let us prove to Oracle and EC that the Open Source community is a true force and we take good care of our citizens and we prefer to work with companies that does the same!
The future of MySQL is in your hands!
Thanks for the help! Michael Widenius Creator of MySQL
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data shows "less than 10 percent of IoT developers are making enough to support a reasonably sized team....
Oct. 8, 2015 01:45 PM EDT Reads: 109
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new data-driven world, marketplaces reign supreme while interoperability, APIs and applications deliver un...
Oct. 8, 2015 01:30 PM EDT Reads: 206
NHK, Japan Broadcasting, will feature the upcoming @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley in a special 'Internet of Things' and smart technology documentary that will be filmed on the expo floor between November 3 to 5, 2015, in Santa Clara. NHK is the sole public TV network in Japan equivalent to the BBC in the UK and the largest in Asia with many award-winning science and technology programs. Japanese TV is producing a documentary about IoT and Smart technology and will be covering @ThingsExpo Silicon Valley. The program, to be aired during the peak viewership season of the year, will have a major impac...
Oct. 8, 2015 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 254
SYS-CON Events announced today that ProfitBricks, the provider of painless cloud infrastructure, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. ProfitBricks is the IaaS provider that offers a painless cloud experience for all IT users, with no learning curve. ProfitBricks boasts flexible cloud servers and networking, an integrated Data Center Designer tool for visual control over the cloud and the best price/performance value available. ProfitBricks was named one of the coolest Clo...
Oct. 8, 2015 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 759
Organizations already struggle with the simple collection of data resulting from the proliferation of IoT, lacking the right infrastructure to manage it. They can't only rely on the cloud to collect and utilize this data because many applications still require dedicated infrastructure for security, redundancy, performance, etc. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Emil Sayegh, CEO of Codero Hosting, will discuss how in order to resolve the inherent issues, companies need to combine dedicated and cloud solutions through hybrid hosting – a sustainable solution for the data required to manage I...
Oct. 8, 2015 01:00 PM EDT Reads: 472
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate at IBM Cloud Data Services, will demonstrate techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, faster user experience, both offline and online. The focus of this talk will be on IBM Cloudant, Apa...
Oct. 8, 2015 12:45 PM EDT Reads: 507
WebRTC is about the data channel as much as about video and audio conferencing. However, basically all commercial WebRTC applications have been built with a focus on audio and video. The handling of “data” has been limited to text chat and file download – all other data sharing seems to end with screensharing. What is holding back a more intensive use of peer-to-peer data? In her session at @ThingsExpo, Dr Silvia Pfeiffer, WebRTC Applications Team Lead at National ICT Australia, will look at different existing uses of peer-to-peer data sharing and how it can become useful in a live session to...
Oct. 8, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 602
As a company adopts a DevOps approach to software development, what are key things that both the Dev and Ops side of the business must keep in mind to ensure effective continuous delivery? In his session at DevOps Summit, Mark Hydar, Head of DevOps, Ericsson TV Platforms, will share best practices and provide helpful tips for Ops teams to adopt an open line of communication with the development side of the house to ensure success between the two sides.
Oct. 8, 2015 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 573
There are so many tools and techniques for data analytics that even for a data scientist the choices, possible systems, and even the types of data can be daunting. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Harrold, Global CTO for Big Data Solutions for EMC Corporation, will show how to perform a simple, but meaningful analysis of social sentiment data using freely available tools that take only minutes to download and install. Participants will get the download information, scripts, and complete end-to-end walkthrough of the analysis from start to finish. Participants will also be given the pract...
Oct. 8, 2015 11:45 AM EDT Reads: 211
SYS-CON Events announced today that IBM Cloud Data Services has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IBM Cloud Data Services offers a portfolio of integrated, best-of-breed cloud data services for developers focused on mobile computing and analytics use cases.
Oct. 8, 2015 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 726
The enterprise is being consumerized, and the consumer is being enterprised. Moore's Law does not matter anymore, the future belongs to business virtualization powered by invisible service architecture, powered by hyperscale and hyperconvergence, and facilitated by vertical streaming and horizontal scaling and consolidation. Both buyers and sellers want instant results, and from paperwork to paperless to mindless is the ultimate goal for any seamless transaction. The sweetest sweet spot in innovation is automation. The most painful pain point for any business is the mismatch between supplies a...
Oct. 8, 2015 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 180
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Oct. 8, 2015 07:00 AM EDT Reads: 5,864
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Oct. 8, 2015 06:00 AM EDT Reads: 759
Nowadays, a large number of sensors and devices are connected to the network. Leading-edge IoT technologies integrate various types of sensor data to create a new value for several business decision scenarios. The transparent cloud is a model of a new IoT emergence service platform. Many service providers store and access various types of sensor data in order to create and find out new business values by integrating such data.
Oct. 8, 2015 04:00 AM EDT Reads: 543
The broad selection of hardware, the rapid evolution of operating systems and the time-to-market for mobile apps has been so rapid that new challenges for developers and engineers arise every day. Security, testing, hosting, and other metrics have to be considered through the process. In his session at Big Data Expo, Walter Maguire, Chief Field Technologist, HP Big Data Group, at Hewlett-Packard, will discuss the challenges faced by developers and a composite Big Data applications builder, focusing on how to help solve the problems that developers are continuously battling.
Oct. 8, 2015 04:00 AM EDT Reads: 487
Who are you? How do you introduce yourself? Do you use a name, or do you greet a friend by the last four digits of his social security number? Assuming you don’t, why are we content to associate our identity with 10 random digits assigned by our phone company? Identity is an issue that affects everyone, but as individuals we don’t spend a lot of time thinking about it. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ben Klang, Founder & President of Mojo Lingo, will discuss the impact of technology on identity. Should we federate, or not? How should identity be secured? Who owns the identity? How is identity ...
Oct. 8, 2015 03:00 AM EDT Reads: 436
Developing software for the Internet of Things (IoT) comes with its own set of challenges. Security, privacy, and unified standards are a few key issues. In addition, each IoT product is comprised of at least three separate application components: the software embedded in the device, the backend big-data service, and the mobile application for the end user's controls. Each component is developed by a different team, using different technologies and practices, and deployed to a different stack/target - this makes the integration of these separate pipelines and the coordination of software upd...
Oct. 8, 2015 03:00 AM EDT Reads: 282
WebRTC converts the entire network into a ubiquitous communications cloud thereby connecting anytime, anywhere through any point. In his session at WebRTC Summit,, Mark Castleman, EIR at Bell Labs and Head of Future X Labs, will discuss how the transformational nature of communications is achieved through the democratizing force of WebRTC. WebRTC is doing for voice what HTML did for web content.
Oct. 8, 2015 03:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,376
WebRTC services have already permeated corporate communications in the form of videoconferencing solutions. However, WebRTC has the potential of going beyond and catalyzing a new class of services providing more than calls with capabilities such as mass-scale real-time media broadcasting, enriched and augmented video, person-to-machine and machine-to-machine communications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Luis Lopez, CEO of Kurento, will introduce the technologies required for implementing these ideas and some early experiments performed in the Kurento open source software community in areas ...
Oct. 8, 2015 02:00 AM EDT Reads: 693
WebRTC: together these advances have created a perfect storm of technologies that are disrupting and transforming classic communications models and ecosystems. In his session at WebRTC Summit, Cary Bran, VP of Innovation and New Ventures at Plantronics and PLT Labs, will provide an overview of this technological shift, including associated business and consumer communications impacts, and opportunities it may enable, complement or entirely transform.
Oct. 8, 2015 01:30 AM EDT Reads: 737