Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

After Break, HP-Oracle Trial Over Itanium Resumes Today

After a two-day break that both sides had asked for, the trial pitting information technology giant Hewlett-Packard against the software concern Oracle will resume today in a courthouse in San Jose, Calif.

No reason for the requested break has been given, though it’s an interesting occurrence, given that CEOs for both parties in the dispute have publicly said nice things about each other in recent weeks.

From the conference stage at the D: All Things Digital conference on May 30, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison said “I like Meg,” referring to HP CEO Meg Whitman, and wishes her “nothing but the best.”

Days later, in an interview with AllThingsD, Whitman returned the compliment, saying that, historically, relations between the two companies had amounted to “one of the great partnerships in IT history.”

Is that perhaps the sound of detente? Probably not. But an interesting sequence of events, nonetheless.

Anyway, the action in court today will focus primarily on testimony by Tim Aylott, an HP executive who spends a lot of time working with customers that run Oracle software on HP servers. Also on the stand will be Martin Fink, senior vice president and general manager of HP’s Business Critical Server business, the business unit that makes Itanium-based servers. Naturally, that unit is taking damage and hurting HP’s overall results.

The lawsuit is basically HP’s attempt to force Oracle to honor an agreement it says is a binding contract requiring Oracle to continue to build software for servers running on Intel’s exotic server chip Itanium. Oracle said it would stop building that software in March of 2011, which set off a big public scrum over a chip that most people had long since forgotten about.


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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald