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Sandy Gupta Shows Up - Working at Microsoft - Updated
Monday, May 05 2008 @ 11:40 AM EDT

Guess where Sandeep Gupta landed after he left SCO? If I put a blindfold on you and told you to point on the map, you'd still guess Microsoft, wouldn't you? And you'd be right. From January, that is where he found a soft landing, as Director, Technical Competitive Strategy of the Server & Tools Division. The company that got him the gig say they are simply thrilled to have placed him there:
"Sandy Gupta is the kind of technology expert that Microsoft prides itself on having inside the company. We could not be more pleased with Sandy coming to Redmond,” said Jim Krouskop Partner, Laurel Group.
I think that means they maybe didn't read his affidavits/declarations in the SCO mess, specifically in SCO v. IBM. Or that Microsoft did, for you cynics out there. Would you like to see the Laurel Group's press release about this placement? Here you go, and for history's sake, I'll reproduce the meat of it here also.

Gupta was the guy that listed "infringing" code, like ELF, hardy har, and went along with the "methods and concepts" theory. You may recall Dr. Randall Davis of MIT's second Declaration, debunking Gupta's allegations. Dr. Davis looked at all the code Sandeep Gupta listed as allegedly infringing, and this world-famous expert concluded:
Despite an extensive review, I could find no source code in any of the IBM Code that incorporates any portion of the source code contained in the Unix System V Code or is in any other manner similar to such source code. Accordingly, the IBM Code cannot be said, in my opinion, to be a modification or a derivative work based on Unix System V Code.

And IBM wrote this about his work, in a Memorandum in Support of its Motion to Strike Materials Submitted by SCO in Opposition to IBM's Cross-Motion for Partial Summary Judgment:

"For example, Mr. Gupta opines that 'Linux RCU is substantially similar to UNIX RCU'. (Gupta Decl. ¶ 10.) Mr. Gupta's entire analysis, however, is focused on unprotectable ideas that must be filtered during any assessment of 'substantial similarity'. See Gates Rubber, 9 F.3d at 836 ('One of the fundamental tenets of copyright law is that protection extends only to the author's original expression and not to the ideas embodied in that expression.'). Mr. Gupta himself describes the allegedly similar material he identifies in his declaration as 'routine[s]' (¶¶ 3, 5, 10) and 'methods' (¶¶ 6, 7) that 'perform the same five acts' (¶ 11). This material is plainly unprotectable. See Gates Rubber, 9 F.3d at 836-37 (noting that 'the main purpose or function of a program will always be an unprotectable idea' and that 'the expression adopted by the programmer is the copyrightable element in a computer program . . . the actual processes or methods embodied in the program are not'). Moreover, when the actual expression--i.e., the code--in what Mr. Gupta calls 'Linux RCU' and 'UNIX RCU' is compared side-by-side, as in Mr. Gupta's own Exhibit A (in columns 1 and 4), even the untrained reviewer can determine that they are completely different and not even close to being 'similar'."

This was back in 2004. They may think we all forgot, but Groklaw never forgets. And if I need to remind you, the SCO v. IBM case is yet to be tried. So Microsoft has hired Gupta midstream.

Here's what another famous computer expert, Brian W. Kernighan, said after reviewing Gupta's work:

Furthermore, in places, Mr. Gupta's conclusions of similarity depend on his selecting isolated lines of code from disparate places and putting them together as if contiguous blocks of code were involved (which they are not) and important differences did not exist (which they do).

So. You may draw your own conclusions as to why he is being rewarded with a plum position at Microsoft after a performance so stunningly rebutted. Mine is that he knows too much and that he fits in perfectly.

Update: Bert Young has now surfaced also. Here he is, CFO at Benefitfocus in Charleston, SC, which provides benefits management for companies:

Bert Young leads Benefitfocus' accounting and finance strategies and activities. A seasoned executive with over 27 years of finance experience, Young has shown the ability to manage rapid growth. Prior to joining Benefitfocus, Young served as Chief Financial Officer of the SCO Group, the owner of the Unix operating system. He also held the CFO position at LANDesk Software, Talk2 Technology and Whittman-Hart Inc. Throughout his career, Young has demonstrated a talent for directing complex financial transactions and the ability to leverage complex technology.

Young earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Utah State University.

They forgot to add his stints at Waste Management and marchFIRST. Perhaps he didn't want to list two companies that went bankrupt on his resume, or people might start to wonder about that sentence regarding managing rapid growth. It's true, as far as it goes, I guess, in that SCO went up for a bit, as did marchFIRST, but it leaves out the crash afterward. My point is just this: if you compare this bio with the one SCO provided, and earlier ones, he doesn't just copy and paste them, the way most of us do. And he remains a "true believer," I see. "The owner of the UNIX operating system." And the SCOfolk dare to talk about Linux zealots.

Here's the Laurel Group's press release:

*************************

Laurel Group Secures Technology Veteran for Microsoft
January 07, 2008 | Seattle

The Laurel Group, the leading executive search and human capital firm in the Pacific Northwest, today announced the appointment of Sandy Gupta as Director, Technical Competitive Strategy of the Server & Tools Division at Microsoft. Jim Krouskop, Partner at the Laurel Group led the search and completed the assignment in only 73 days.

Gupta will lead technical analysis and oversee competitive positioning for Microsoft’s Server & Tool Division. Microsoft develops creative solutions to business problems, including the most widely used operating system and productivity software products in the world.

Prior to taking the post at Microsoft, Gupta was the Chief Technology Officer and President of the SCO Group where he oversaw and managed SCO's key technology product deliverables for IT infrastructure and SCO Mobile Server. Prior to that, he held a number of senior positions, including VP of SCO Engineering and Senior Director of UNIX Engineering while working for the SCO Murray Hill office in New Jersey.

“The people at Microsoft make the company the premier technology organization in the world. Sandy Gupta is the kind of technology expert that Microsoft prides itself on having inside the company. We could not be more pleased with Sandy coming to Redmond,” said Jim Krouskop Partner, Laurel Group.


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