The question is an important one for the entire high-tech sector, but especially for "cloud" providers, many of them users of APIs cloned from Amazon Web Services. If Alsup rules that companies can copyright their APIs, those cloud providers would suddenly become the target of lawsuits.
The second phase of the trial is less complicated than the first. It involves two patents and is expected to last about two weeks.
Damages will be considered in the last phase of the case. Oracle originally asked for a billion dollars in damages and a permanent injunction against Google from using infringing code. Most of that would come from the alleged copyright violations, as experts peg the maximum damages for the patent infringements to be $150,000.
Oracle also wants a cut of any profits Google may have earned by using the infringing code, a demand that Alsup reportedly said "bordered on the ridiculous."