FORTUNE -- Watching Apple's (AAPL) patent infringement trial from afar -- today, it's from Prague -- I can't tell if the jury got as clear an explanation of where Apple's so-called "quick link" software came from as the one Daniel Eran Dilger posted Sunday on AppleInsider (How Samsung & Google teamed up to steal Apple Data Detectors for Android).
But reading Dilger's deep dive into the history of the technology I'm reminded of what Steve Jobs told his biographer the day Apple sued HTC, the first of the Android manufactures to feel the litigious wrath of Jobs:
"Our lawsuit is saying, 'Google you f***ing ripped off the iPhone, wholesale ripped us off. Grand theft.
"I will spend my last dying breath... to right this wrong. I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product. I'm willing to go thermonuclear war on this. They are scared to death, because they know they are guilty."
Well, if Google (GOOG) is the company that copied Apple's technology -- and in the case of Apple's data detectors, it would seem they are -- why is Apple suing Samsung?
Samsung's lawyers raised this question in their opening statement two weeks ago, and it's an argument that could resonate for the jury.
I took a crack at it in August 2012, right after the first Apple v. Samsung trial ended in Apple's favor to the tune of $1 billion.
"In retrospect, [suing Samsung, not Google] was smart move. As Apple laid out its narrative for the jury in its closing arguments, the Samsung story was an easy one to tell. Not only had the Korean manufacturer imitated Apple's designs down to the boxes the devices came in, but it left a paper trail that showed the company scrutinizing every aspect of the iPhone touchscreen for ways Apple's design decisions could improve Samsung's products.
'The mountain of evidence presented during the trial,' Apple CEO Tim Cook told employees after the verdict, 'showed that Samsung's copying went far deeper than we knew.'
"Whether Google left a similar paper trail remains to be seen. Moreover, Google can claim, as it did when it was sued by Oracle, that Android doesn't produce any direct revenue for the company, so there can be zero damages. Android may generate billions of ad dollars, but that's a harder story to sell a jury.
'It's all about tactics,' says FOSS Patents' Florian Mueller. 'There's no reason Apple would have to be afraid of suing Google directly. It's just tactically more convenient to go against other device makers.'"
Mueller, by the way, has so thoroughly changed his tune on Apple's patent litigation strategy that on Sunday, after a brief exchange with Dilger over the AppleInsider piece, Mueller blocked Dilger's Twitter account.
Tempers, it seems, are running high.
New evidence in one of the most contentious issues in the Apple v. Samsung II patent trial.
FORTUNE -- AppleInsider's Daniel Eran Dilger and FOSS Patents' Florian Mueller have locked horns in a fierce debate over whether Samsung ought to be held liable for copying Apple's (AAPL) slide-to-unlock patent -- one of five patents at issue in the $2 billion infringement trial that began last week.
Dilger posted his piece on Saturday:
Apple unlocks MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 6, 2014 5:41 AM ET
Is he being blackmailed? Has his child been kidnapped? Did he merely sell out?
FORTUNE -- The questions in the subhead are not mine. They were posted Thursday on Investor Village's AAPL Sanity board. But questions along those lines are being asked by more than a few long-time readers of Florian Mueller's FOSS Patents blog, including executives at Apple (AAPL) headquarters.
Mueller, for those unfamiliar with his work, may be the world's most-quoted expert on smartphone patents. MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 3, 2014 9:18 AM ET
"I don't merely disagree with Apple but am rather wondering whether it has lost its mind."
FORTUNE -- Apple (AAPL) for several years has had a loyal supporter in Florian Mueller.
Nobody followed the company's myriad patent disputes more closely. Or criticized more sharply the claims made against Apple by Samsung and Motorola/Google for their so-called standard-essential patents.
But this time, he writes in his FOSS Patents blog, Apple has gone too far.
Having read the transcript MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Mar 11, 2014 8:58 AM ET
Wonder what the trial that starts today is all about? Florian Mueller has the answers.
FORTUNE -- Nobody covers high-tech patent litigation -- especially lawsuits involving Apple's (AAPL) patents -- more closely than FOSS Patents' Florian Mueller.
So it's probably appropriate that Mueller provide the definitive Q&A for the damages retrial that starts Tuesday in San Jose.
Click the links below for his full answers:
Q: Is this a patent trial?
A: Sort of. MORE
Did the International Trade Commission blow it by ignoring Dean Pinkert's dissent?
FORTUNE -- His dissent was heavily redacted and buried in a long official filing. But everything you need to know about how the U.S. International Trade Commission punted when it granted Samsung's request for an import ban on five Apple's (AAPL) devices -- forcing the first Presidential veto of one of its decisions in a quarter century -- is contained MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Aug 5, 2013 6:13 AM ET
April was the cruelest month yet for Google and Motorola on the patent front.
FORTUNE -- It was Google (GOOG) against the world last month, as it fought and lost patent battles directly or by proxy with Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT), Nokia (NOK), HTC and ZTE. "Google shoot blanks in smartphone patent wars," wrote Thomson Reuters' Reynolds Holding. Or as The Verge's Nilay Patel put it: "Does anyone know why Google bought Motorola?"
FOSS MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 3, 2013 8:27 AM ET
How could the press get the effect of a judge's high-profile ruling so wrong?
FORTUNE -- When Judge Lucy Koh last month ordered a new trial to determine the proper damage award for 14 of the 28 Samsung devices found by a jury last summer to have infringed Apple (AAPL) patents, nearly every reporter covering story followed Reuters' lead:
"Apple had a major setback in its ongoing mobile patents battle with Samsung Electronics MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 1, 2013 6:35 AM ET
Sir Robin Jacob issued harsh sanctions after Apple's half-hearted "not as cool" apology
FORTUNE -- Remember the British case that Apple lost to Samsung last July in which the judge ordered Apple to publish a notice in newspapers and on its website correcting the impression left by the trial that Samsung's Galaxy tablets had copied the iPad?
It's back in the news, with a twist.
Apple (AAPL), you may recall, complied with the MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Feb 28, 2013 7:45 AM ET
Apple accuses Samsung of taking a slash-and-burn approach to evidence preservation
FORTUNE -- Samsung's failure to produce evidence in a timely manner is emerging as a pivotal issue in the California federal court where Apple (AAPL) has sued the Korean smartphone manufacturer for allegedly infringing Apple's iPhone patents.
Last week, FOSS Patents' Florian Mueller reported that the judge in the case had ordered harsh "preclusive sanctions" against Samsung for what Mueller described MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 11, 2012 11:58 AM ET
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