25 April 2007

Google Does the Decent Thing

A criticism sometimes levelled at users of open source who make changes to the code but do not distribute it is that they don't give it back to the community (which they are generally perfectly to do, under the GNU GPL, say). So it's good to see one of the highest-profile users of free software, Google, giving back code changes of its own free will. Let's hope others follow suit.


Anonymous said...

Question: where is the boundary between contributing code to a community for review, and forking a project?
I lead up to this question less abruptly in the post I've just made at changingway.org

Glyn Moody said...

Forking is a question of support: if no one uses your fork or extends it, it's not a fork, it's just a contribution.

Equally, if enough people find it useful, then the fork serves the purpose of applying pressure to the main branch to fold it in.