[ale] We Win, We Win!!!

Charles Shapiro hooterpincher at gmail.com
Fri Apr 9 00:30:28 EDT 2021

I appear to have hit a nerve. What Fun!

My use of hyperbole is justified.  Both judges are undoubtedly experienced
jurists respected in their fields.  Being expert in one thing does not make
you an expert in another.  I have more code in production than either of
them, and I have been working in information technology for almost all of
my career.

Both of my parents were lawyers, both argued in front of the supreme court
at one time or another.  I would not presume to write a petition for
Certiorari, even though many prisoners do just that. ( a petition for
Certiorari is a document arguing that the supreme court should hear a
specific case. It typically lays out the issues in the case which the
petitioner claims are significant enough for the Great 9 to take a look.
There can be a court hearing involved.)

I am sorry that I didn't make my ironic use of the word "Boomer" clearer.

Your response actually made me go out and read the text of the Supreme's
opinion and the dissents in this case ( I skipped the petition for Cert,
since it was granted.  I also skipped Judge Alsup's original opinion, since
it was overruled on appeal).  You can find that document here (
https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/20pdf/18-956_d18f.pdf ).

Samuel Alito and Clarence Thomas's dissent appears to hinge on two factors
which impressed them: 1) the number of lines of API code which Google
allegedly stole and 2) the uniqueness of that code.  Google copied around
11,500 lines of Oracle's API, out of a total of 2.86*10^6 in the entire
API.  I believe there are only a limited number of possible ways to express
a general-purpose programming API. They seem to think that naming a call
which returns the larger of two numbers called "max(a,b)" makes it somehow
copyrightably different from naming it "maxVal(a,b)".  I disagree.  In
later editions of Android, Google apparently did just this kind of renaming
to further separate their code from Oracle's.

Making Clarence and Alito's dissenting opinion the law would have a
cataclysmic effect on every programming project in the country.  We already
see enough idiotic patent extortion by undeserving parasites flying around
the software world.  This would add an order of magnitude more of them over
copyright claims.  I think we can both agree that the whole
copyright//patent system needs some radical re-thinking in the light of the
awesome power of networked computing and the peculiar text-but-machine
nature of computer programs.

I take no offence from any of this.  I trust you don't either.

-- CHS

On Wed, Apr 7, 2021 at 12:52 PM Jerald Sheets via Ale <ale at ale.org> wrote:

> > On Apr 6, 2021, at 10:32 PM, Steve Litt via Ale <ale at ale.org> wrote:
> >
> > Charles Shapiro via Ale said on Tue, 6 Apr 2021 12:54:07 -0400
> >
> >
> >> ).  The two dissenting Supremes ( Thomas and Alito) are luddite
> >> neanderthal Boomer idiots who don't understand the issue.
> >
> > Ahem! Idiocy and Boomerism don't correlate. Thomas and Alito are
> > luddite neanderthal idiots who *happen to be* Boomers.
> More of this ridiculous “boomer” bullshit.
> Note:  In command parlance, when you use the “ok boomer” or refer to
> $anyone_older_than_me as “boomer”, you make yourself to look like an
> idiot.  And if I had a nickel for every time I watched a “Gen Z” refer to a
> Millennial as “Boomer”, I’d be a rich man because it’s freaking happening
> all the time.
> It’s more often targeted at Gen X’ers, actually, because “Boomers” right
> now are anywhere from 57-75 years old.  Gen X’ers run from 41 through about
> 56 years old and everything “newer” is Millenial or Generation Z.
> Having said that….
> Thomas is definitely from the Baby Boomer generation, but is one of the
> most intelligent and well spoken legal voices and this is the reason he’s
> sitting on the court DESPITE the controversy around his nomination.
> Yale Law School
> Missouri Assistant Attorney General
> Practicing Attorney
> Legislative Assistant to the Senatee Commerce Committee
> Assistant Secretary of Education for the Office of Civil Rights
> Judge for the United States Court of Appeals
> Justice Alito is also a well-storied legal personality with considerable
> background and reason for being on the court.  That anyone not in the legal
> field would peradventure to disparage either without credential is
> laughable.
> Yale Law School
> Editor of the Yale Law Journal
> Clerked with the Third Circuit
> Assistant US Attorney
> Deputy Assistant Attorney General
> US Attorney to the New Jersey District
> Adjunct at Seton Hall School of Law
> Neither of these “Boomers” is ignorant.  Now, of the two, Alito has a more
> prestigious career, but both have engaged in very important work. Given
> they tend to agree on decisions or have similar opinions, it is of note
> they would disagree on something.
> Perhaps this is an opportunity to learn rather than disparage.
> <rant mode off>
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