Seeing through Google’s nontributions

I have been aggravated and annoyed for some time by Google pretending that their use of open source software entitle them to say they contribute. My personal open source contributions rival their entire corporate contribution. Google have some great open source developers working for them – on closed source software. But Google do not contribute significantly to open source. Indeed by ignoring Linux in many of their intiatives they threaten it.

So it was with some pleasure that I happened along a blog entry by Navaneeth Krishnan on his attendance at FOSS in India. It is reproduced below.

2:30 pm
“Google and Open Source” by Zaheda Bhorat begins. The whole Google thing looks like a recruitment and PR drive. They have a “We are hiring” caption right in their presentation slide. Google’s contribution to open source is that they run on Linux. I wonder if that’s Google’s contribution to Linux or Linux’s contribution to Google. And of course it seems they have open source examples of how to use the Google API.

The next 30 minutes is about the Google Summer of Code. Zaheda discusses how the whole stuff works and how successful the program was. She then gets a student on stage who shares his experiences being a participant in the Summer of Code. I hear him say “Thank you google” at least thrice.