I still know a lot of Sun people, and so avidly watched yesterday's press conference where the muck-mucks from Oracle described how they plan to assimilate the Sun assets...at least the ones they think will make enough money to justify the trouble...
What they didn't talk about is their plan to subjugate Sun culture.
Most of the people I know who are still at Sun are active participants on a site I helped to create: Blogs.Sun.Com. Back when we set it up, the rules of play were revolutionary, but pretty simple (my paraphrase): "Don't defame people. Don't disclose confidential or trade secret information. We hired you because you are smart...Don't screw up."
Sun was the first large tech company to create an employee blogspace. The right to blog was a huge perk of working for Sun for the past nearly six years and brought many Sun people satisfaction. Heck, it made some careers as people discovered it was cool to be passionate about your job. It was cool to expose a little of your life online and discover your voice. It was cool to mix life and work in writing...but alas, no more!
As part of this next phase of assimilation...Oracle recently made available the new rules for blogging. If you work for Snoracle starting now, you must obtain your manager's permission before each public posting that relates to work. In theory that means before every tweet. Remaining Snoracle employees have until May to migrate their personal blogs to a non-Oracle-owned hosting service...but if even after such migration, anyone who mentions work on a personal blog forfeits their editorial self-determination, as Oracle believes the blog then becomes Oracle property subject to their draconian rules.
This isn't the only act of cultural imperialism we'll hear about as Oracle teaches Sun that "resistance is futile", but for me its a particularly poignant reminder that the party is truly over.