Google throws bodies at OpenOffice
Google plans to hire programmers to improve OpenOffice.org, a demonstration of its affinity for open source initiatives and one the company believes also shows sound practical sense.
OpenOffice has its roots in Sun Microsystems’ StarOffice suite of programs. Five years ago, Sun turned its proprietary software into an open-source project. Only recently, however, has the competitor to Microsoft’s Office attracted serious attention.
Now Google believes it can help OpenOffice–perhaps working to pare down the software’s memory requirements or its mammoth 80MB download size, said Chris DiBona, manager for open-source programs at the search company.
“We want to hire a couple of folks to help make OpenOffice better,” DiBona said.
Google has shown an affinity for open-source software, which are programs developed in the open and available for free. Many of the company’s programmers came of age in the open-source era, so advancing the open-source agenda comes naturally, DiBona said. But the company also has business reasons to justify its open-source embrace.
“We use a fair amount of open-source software at Google. We want to make sure that’s a healthy community. And we want to make sure open source preserves competitiveness within the industry,” he said.
Full article: ZDNet