Sun's Schwartz Says Goodbye, Promises to 'Keep Things Interesting'

Lora Bentley

Former Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz said his farewell Wednesday in a haiku poem posted on Twitter. Since he made a name for himself as one of the first tech CEOs to blog regularly, it was odd to see so few words from him as his tenure came to a close.


Oracle's acquisition of the server shop that had tried to make a go of open source hardware and software closed at the end of January, according to CNET News. In a blog post on that day -- the first he had written in several months -- Schwartz wasn't specific about where the future would take him, but he did say he expected to "do [his] part to keep things interesting." He directed readers to his Twitter feed to keep up with his activities, and then closed the post simply, with "Jonathan Schwartz CEO, Sun Microsystems, Inc.A Wholly Owned Subsidiary of Oracle Corporation."


In a strange sort of way, the close of the acquisition represents the end of a chapter for me, too. Not a long chapter, but a chapter nonetheless. I have covered the acquisition and its ups and downs with various regulators from the start, and it has dovetailed nicely with my responsibility to write about all things governance and risk. But I covered Sun Microsystems long before that as well, when I was responsible for IT Business Edge's open source blog.


I wrote about Java going open source under the General Public License v.2. And the first open source hardware from Sun. I was shocked with everyone else when Sun bought MySQL for $1 billion.


I also remember admiring Schwartz's chutzpah when he invited Linux kernel creator Linus Torvalds to his home for dinner, where they could begin to resolve their differences, begin to "work join hands and communities" after Sun got serious about increasing adoption of its Solaris operating system.Then there was this post, where Schwartz called Microsoft on the carpet (without specifically naming the software juggernaut) for threatening to sue customers and business partners who use or distrbute open source software for patent infringement.


It was always fun to see what Schwartz and Sun would do next, and I imagine that won't change now that he's moved beyond Sun.

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