Google confuses me
Google donated $350,000 to support open source development. In
reference to that, Google's Chris DiBona is quoted as saying
that "Backing open-source projects also puts pressure on Microsoft and other software companies".
We all know that Google uses Linux and other open source software
for the humongous server farm that processes our searches. We all
know that Microsoft probably
wants to kill Google. We get it, Microsoft gets it, and
Google gets it.
So why do all their platform products appear in Microsoft versions
first and Linux or Mac versions later or never?
I understand that they HAVE to do Microsoft versions. I also
understand that Linux versions can be more difficult because of
all the different distros out there. Yes, the Mac and Linux
market combined is still ridiculously small so from a straight
product analysis, what they do makes sense. But it does not make sense
Microsoft is Google's enemy. Not because Google has any reason
to dislike them, but because Microsoft sees Google as a giant threat
and therefore turns against them like a rabid dog. This 350K donation
is a political move, but an even better political maneuver
would be to put platform products out in Mac and Linux versions
BEFORE the Microsoft versions. The Linux ports don't
have to be all inclusive; it's the gesture that counts: Microsoft
has to be second fiddle for a change. People coming to download
the latest whiz-bang tool from Google would find a Mac version and
perhaps one or two Linux downloads and a note saying to check back
later for the Microsoft Windows tool. Post that a week later,
and in the meantime you've got people wishing they had Linux
or a Mac.
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© 2009-11-07 Anthony Lawrence