How Google Does Open Source


TORONTO — Marc Merlin has been working as an engineer at Google since 2002 and has seen (and done) a lot of open source and Linux work during that time. Speaking at the LinuxCon North America event this week, Merlin provided a standing room only audience with an overview how Google uses and contributes to open source.

“Google wouldn’t be around today without open source software,” Merlin said.

Merlin noted that in its early days Google had limited resources to contribute back to open source. Additionally the first generation of Google’s software was all written to be for internal-use and wasn’t originally designed to be open source. He added that it’s not easy to open source software, after the fact.

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