Sun's attempt to wage war with Microsoft over Java has backfired, as last week the company was thwarted in its attempt to make Java an internationally-recognised standard. In a humiliating defeat, Sun's home country gave the thumbs down to its Java submission to the ISO committee. The US ISO technical advisory group is the first of the 27 participating countries to vote down Sun's request. Six countries, including the UK, have given the yes vote. George Paolini, director of corporate marketing for Sun, said: "We are disappointed. We went in there cautiously and thought there was a 50/50 chance." The 19 remaining countries have until November 14 to cast their votes. ISO makes its decision based on a consensus of all the voting countries. In the previous round of voting which ended in July, two-thirds of the countries voted "no with comments" on Sun's submission. The US no vote is not a good sign for Sun, which is very much in the public eye following its legal wrangle with Microsoft. Gary Barnett, analyst at research group Ovum, believes that Sun is damaging its image as a stable company through its legal battle with Microsoft. "An ISO Java is not likely while Sun is having to take people (like Microsoft) to court to produce compliant versions," he commented. Barnett said that standards bodies such as ISO have to take a very conservative approach to adopting standards and Sun has not done itself any favours in disagreeing so publicly with Microsoft. "If (Sun) hadn't fallen out of bed with Microsoft, its (ISO) case would be a lot stronger," he added. Barnett believes that ISO is acting cautiously because it needs to be absolutely convinced it won't have "egg on its face in five years time with a load of de facto (Java) standards." Microsoft:legal battle In a new twist to the companies' legal battle, Microsoft last week countersued Sun, claiming the company had breached its own contract and had failed in its obligation to treat Microsoft on an equal footing with all other licensees. In the complaint, Microsoft stated that Sun had failed to deliver technology that passed its own test suites and ran on the Microsoft reference implementation of Java. It also claimed that Sun had failed to deliver a public set of test suites as part of the Java licence agreement. Microsoft is seeking to sue Sun for unfair business practices.
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