Sun is always a bit late to the party.
Sure they have given us great technology back in the 90's when DEC owned the campuses.
They also gave us Java (Just didn't capitalize on it as a way to make revenue)
Now they spend 1billion for MySQL? (Rather their latest forray after supporting JavaDB/Cloudscape/Derby)
Hey! Back in 2000/2001 they could have bought Informix Software (The database division of the "reversed" merger Ascential aka 'Ass-n-tail') for a Billion or so dollars.
Instead IBM bought them and of course life has been miserable as the bastard step son to Janet Perna's DB2. (Now that Janet has left the building, Informix is getting some more attention).
But I digress.
Informix had about $100 million in revenues when they were bought. How much revenues did MySQL have? And has Sun been able to convert those sites which run MySQL in production yet fail to pay for the product?
Sun Microsystems would have been better off purchasing a company that supported an advanced version of Postgress which would have been more competitive with IBM and Oracle.
There they could have further aligned the engine with their advances in core cpu improvements.
Then they would have JavaDB as a lightweight engine, and SPDB as their core engine.
(SPDB = Sun/Postgress DataBase).
This would have allowed them to develop a services/consulting arm and database technology that could compete on the OLTP and distributed DW front.
Now the best engine is IBM's IDS (Informix Dynamic Server). Its the greenest engine (efficient) and probably the best suited to take advantage of the Rock generation of CPUs.
And you heard it hear first.
The pirate... Its not to late to have Sun change course and take charge.