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James Gosling explains why he left Oracle

James Gosling gave an exclusive interview to eWeek, where for the first time he gave a detailed account of the reasons that led him to leave Oracle .

According to him, there were a number of reasons for dismissal, starting with the salary. Oracle offered him exactly the same salary, but they deprived of all bonuses, and in fact if the business went well, the bonuses brought in much more money than the basic salary.

In addition, Oracle’s job hierarchy did not have a position of such a level that Gosling had in Sun (fellow), so he actually had to descend heavily down the job ladder.

But even this did not become the last straw. Gosling tolerated until he realized how tough Oracle was going to control it. The company's policy was that he, as an employee, has no right to express his personal opinion about Java, if this opinion contradicts the company's policy. Now Java has become Oracle’s intellectual property, and the ability of its creators to make decisions has been minimized.
Gosling wanted to reduce the role of representation. That is, he had to travel to conferences and seminars and speak on behalf of Oracle as the author of Java. In other words, play the role of such a star and sign autographs. Someone likes a similar role, says Gosling, but not him.

He had previously doubted the "ethical purity" of Oracle, but being in such a situation, he decided to leave the company altogether.

Answering a question about whether it would be better to sell IBM, which was also a contender for the purchase of Sun, James Gosling replied that they had a long discussion with Scott McNealy (chairman of the board of directors of Sun), but finally decided that although “Oracle is more wild company, but IBM will fire more people. ” So they gave themselves up to the hands of Oracle, one might say, from humane considerations: managers thought about the fate of ordinary employees.

Although Gosling himself, without a doubt, IBM would have received much more respect and benefits. For example, when IBM bought Rational Software in due time, the lead developer Grady Buch (Grady Booch, co-author of the UML language) got the position of IBM Fellow and the opportunity to do his favorite business without any problems.

The main problem of Oracle, says Gosling, is due to micromanagement. That is, the head of the company Larry Ellison makes decisions on all matters, even the smallest. He can intervene in absolutely any microproject and decide the fate of any employee. In fact, even the top management of Oracle has no influence in this one-man empire. Gosling says that in all decisions regarding Java, he felt Larry Ellison’s hand.

Gosling also cites a curious example of corporate culture in Oracle. Sun decided before the sale to arrange a big party for their employees and took off for a day the whole Great America amusement park in California. Employees were given free tickets to all rides. However, at the last moment, Oracle’s leadership vetoed this entertainment event. It was said that it contradicts their corporate culture (they say, this is not the Oracle Way ). We are not talking about saving money - Sun has already paid for the rental of the park and the money was not returned, so all the tickets had to be handed over to charities. At the same time, Oracle recently spent $ 200 million on sailing races . Such a corporate culture.

Gosling also said that Oracle’s lawsuit against Google over patent infringement on Java in the Android operating system is about what it expected. During the preliminary negotiations before the merger, one of the meetings spoke about the patent situation between Sun and Google, and at that moment "we saw how the lawyers at Oracle began to shine, " says Gosling.

Sun itself did not want to sue Google for several reasons. Firstly, they didn’t see Google as a “young Microsoft” who is seeking to conquer the whole world and plant on their products. Secondly, such lawsuits are very expensive, and not only in terms of money, but also the time of top managers. Huge resources are wasted. Well, another argument - Google PR machine, against which did not even want to stick out. Still, Google is everyone's favorite, so Sun, apparently, tried to get compensation without scandal .

In general, James Gosling does not worry about the fate of Java. He is sure that everything will be fine. First, Java is already living its life. Secondly, a significant part of Oracle's business depends on Java, so it is in the interests of the company to develop this technology. Of course, there may be some conflicts between Oracle and the Java-community, but in the end everything should be settled. Still, for many of those who build their products in Java, it is important to understand that Java is more than just one vendor.

Source: https://habr.com/ru/post/104799/

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