Whether it's found money from a Nigerian Prince or a favorable report from one of the firm's own units, a wise manager looks harder at positive numbers than negative ones. That manager knows he or she is more likely to be fooled by something that's too good to be true.
The lesson here isn't to avoid Oracle. Based on IBM's results, most customers seem to already be doing that. It's to avoid tricking yourself into ignoring problems until they are too big, or too far gone, to fix.
The other thing that occurs to me is that Hurd may be Ellison's Nigerian Prince. The next time Ellison hears Someday My Prince Will Come, will he recognize the personal connection and realize that for him, and for Oracle, the arrival of that prince was a bad thing?
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