Developer Week in Review

Amazon buys itself a lawsuit, a setting, and the new name in databases

Netflix went down over three hours ago, and everyone is on edge here. My son just started reciting the script to “Monty Python and the Holy Grail” in an attempt to keep our courage up. This may be the last thing I ever write, so — Oh, never mind, it’s back up again … Crisis averted, and on to this week’s developer news.

We have an App Store Appstore for that!

Amazon AppstoreAmazon this week unleashed their own Appstore for Android devices. Apple took umbrage at the use of the (evidently trademarked) term “App Store” and fired a salvo of lawyers across Amazon’s bow. Amazon responded by essentially saying “Hey, app store is a generic term.” To which Apple responded “So is windows, and Microsoft gets to protect that …”

Given that Apple gave Amazon multiple warnings not to use the App Store tag, it’s unclear why Amazon decided to be the one application store to challenge Apple for use of it. And unlike nebulous patent claims, trademark claims are pretty straightforward. Amazon is going to have a hard time arguing that their use of the term “Appstore” is sufficiently different from Apple’s App Store, and that there couldn’t be any confusion. But however things fall out in the end, the only winners, of course, will be the lawyers.

A moment of silence for, please

An old and venerable friend is passing away, and we should all take a moment to reflect on the long and fruitful life that it led. Oracle has announced that they will be decommissioning the domain, the 12th oldest domain name on the Internet. For those of us whose fingers can type “” automatically, it will be a jarring change.

I first encountered Sun way back in 1985 when Xerox AI Systems decided to port their Interlisp workstations to run on Sun hardware. The Sun 4/110 on my desktop was (to me at the time) the coolest thing on the planet. For a while, it seemed like Sun (along with Cisco) was the Internet. Now the last major vestige of Sun, their domain, will be sold off like cattle. Excuse me, I think I have something in my eye …

O’Reilly MySQL Conference & Expo, being held April 11-14, will spread the latest and best knowledge on MySQL and related technologies to the global open source community.

Save 25% on registration with the code MYS11RAD

Bake for 20 minutes, and Drizzle liberally with SQL

One of the side-effects of Oracle acquiring Sun is that MySQL was thrown into somewhat of a turmoil. Forked versions seemed to be cropping up everywhere. Now the first of the baby-MySQLs is getting on the bus and heading off to school, as Drizzle has announced their general availability release.

For individuals and companies looking for an alternative to Oracle’s MySQL offering, Drizzle offers an API-compatible replacement that aims to be a leaner, meaner database optimized for high-performance operations. For those wanting a more traditionally MySQL experience without the Oracle baggage, MariaDB is still out there, of course.

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  • Anthony Cramp

    Could this be a marketing stunt by Amazon? I didn’t realise Amazon was making an “Appstore” until I saw the “Apple is suing Amazon” headlines on the news sites.

  • Gordon J Milne

    History is written by the winners, not the losers. In 10 years time Sun will be almost totally forgotten.

    As it is new grads haven’t experienced a world without Windows or MacOS; they didn’t get to live through the every-hardware-platform-has-its-own-way-of-doing-things-phase. Perhaps that is a good thing?

    Still, I find it hard to acknowledge that won’t be with us any more. My Sparc IPC was the bees knees when I got it (finally) onto my desk in the early 90s, 8MB of memory and an I/O system that didn’t get bogged down as soon as you did a little I/O.

    How did ever end up in a world where the most popular microprocessor has the fewest number of registers?

    Grumble, grumble.

  • Andy Arx

    a truly alternative to MySQL is Postgresql: reliable, performant and secure.

    I believe it’s the closest RDBMS to the SQL93 standard.