Two Views Of Larry Ellison

from the still-a-mess dept

Still one of the more intriguing Silicon Valley characters after all of these years, Larry Ellison probably loves all the attention he continues to get. There are apparently not one, but two new biographies of Larry Ellison hitting the shelf: Softwar and Everyone Else Must Fail. According to the combined review of the two books, they take completely different perspectives on Ellison, but can lead you to the same conclusion: it’s somewhat amazing that Oracle has stayed in business, let alone done as well as it has. The first book, Softwar, was written with Ellison’s approval – and (oddly) let’s him do a running commentary throughout the book. That is, he got an early copy of the manuscript and added his own comments, appended as footnotes throughout the book. The other book, though, was written by talking to unhappy customers, competitors and former Oracle executives to get a picture of how Ellison is viewed from the outside. Combined, the end result of the two books seems to paint a picture of someone who has built a company that has created top notch, but still overhyped software (often released too early, with many bugs) – which also bullies its customers and executives.

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