by Staff Writers
San Francisco (AFP) June 18, 2012
Business software giant Oracle on Monday shook off rumors of a looming management shake-up and announced plans to buy back an additional $10 billion in stock.
Oracle shares gained ground on what had been a losing day of trading on the Nasdaq after the surprise early release of its quarterly earnings report along with word the board of directors had approved the stock buy-back scheme.
The California-based company said that net income in its fourth fiscal quarter rose eight percent to $3.5 billion on revenue that climbed a percent to $10.9 billion.
"Our record-breaking fourth quarter featured several all-time highs for Oracle," said chief financial officer Safra Catz.
High points for the quarter included software license sales of four billion dollars and overall software revenue of eight billion dollars, according to Catz.
Along with authorizing the repurchase of another $10 billion worth of Oracle stock the company's board declared a quarterly dividend of six cents per share.
Oracle stock price slid more than two percent during the trading day due to unconfirmed reports of a management shake-up in the works.
Oracle stock was lifted more than three percent to $27.98 in after-market trading that followed release of the earnings figures.
Internet rights champions call for US patent reform
"The software patent system is broken," EFF staff attorney Julie Samuels said in a release.
"Patents are supposed to help promote new inventions and ideas, but software patents are chronically misused to limit competition, quash new tools and products, and shake down companies big and small."
San Francisco-based EFF called on Internet users, inventors, academics and activists to join forces to fix flawed patent rules.
Seven proposed changes and an invitation for people to endorse the effort and provide feedback were posted online at a Defendinnovation.org website.
Recommendations included trimming the life of a patent from 20 years to five and having Congress examine whether software patents help the economy at all.
The EFF also suggested letting winners in lawsuits recover legal costs from losers as a way of discouraging "patent trolls" from pursuing tenuous claims.
The term is a reference to people or companies that get patents and sit on them with the intent to one day squeeze money out of inventors who actually put the innovations to use.
"The US Patent Office is overwhelmed and underfunded, and issues questionable patents every day -- patents that hurt innovators and consumers alike," said EFF activism director Rainey Reitman.
"It's time for the technology community to work together to create a blueprint for reforming the broken software patent system."
Space Technology News - Applications and Research
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US regains top spot for fastest supercomputer
Washington (AFP) June 18, 2012
An IBM supercomputer developed for US government nuclear simulations and to study climate change and the human genome has been recognized as the world's fastest. The announcement Monday at the 2012 International Supercomputing Conference in Hamburg, Germany recognized Sequoia, an IBM BlueGene/Q system installed at the Department of Energy's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The mac ... read more
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