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Google releases some Glass source code (arstechnica.com)
283 points by coloneltcb 1632 days ago | hide | past | web | 127 comments | favorite



It's not as if they were making us a gift... As soon as they sold their first device it was required by the Linux kernel GPL2 license to release the kernel source code.


Technically, Google would only be required to make a written offer, and we could ship physical medium copies to folks who wrote them.


I dont care if I get down-voted for making a comment unrelated directly to this; Thank you.

You are my personal hero for today DannyBee, for speaking calmly and making sense on HN.


You should follow all his comments. He's like this all the time. It's a little freaky.


You can follow comments? I'd like to be able to just follow a user, and have their comments/submissions brought to my attention.


In the sense that you can bookmark the "comments" link off someone's profile, yes.


Well if we are going to be technical about it, why is Google even required to make a written offer under the GPL? They can, for example, never release the source code for software that didn't make it (in binary form) onto the devices. Right?

http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-faq.html#GPLRequireSourcePos...

Let's make this question more relevant ... if you write server code that isn't released 'to the public', but powers your website which is publicly accessible, must you release the source code if your server was "linked with" (whatever that means) GPLed code?



No to which question? I think you meant "Yes"


"Must you release the source code if your server was linked with GPLed code?" No.

("Must you release the source code if your server was linked with AGPLed code?" Yes.)


Thanks for the clarification!


But then the first recipient could post it online on github or whatever.


Sure, but the parent said "it was required by the Linux kernel GPL2 license to release the kernel source code"

This is not technically true.


Yes they are required to release it. 'Release' doesn't have to mean 'on the internet'. Even if it's sent out on 5¼ inch floppies by the slowest postal service known to man and only makes its way onto the internet by a 3rd party its still released.


1. Besides being an engineer, I'm an IP lawyer specializing in open source (and run open source license compliance for Google), so I tend to use very precise terminology since the licenses do.

2. I actually was the person who put up the current glass kernel release.

3. Again, the parent i responded to implied Google has some affirmative obligation to place the source code on the internet. They don't. They are only required to make a written offer. Someone can take them up on that written offer, yes, and then they could repost it to the internet, but Google definitely has no affirmative obligation to place the GPL'd source code on the internet as was implied. We do it anyway, because it's the right thing to do, but ...


1. You didn't have to tell anyone you were a lawyer. Just speak and it will remove all doubt.

2. Who you are is irrelevant to the original comment...

3. Your third statement only affirms your status of lawyer as you are twisting a statement to suit yours.

original statement: It's not as if they were making us a gift... As soon as they sold their first device it was required by the Linux kernel GPL2 license to release the kernel source code.

Your version: <He> implied Google has some affirmative obligation to place the source code on the internet...Google definitely has no affirmative obligation to place the GPL'd source code on the internet as was implied

I still can't see how releasing the source on the internet was implied regardless of your lawyering... ;)


1. Fair enough

2. I only pointed it out to show that I actually do GPL compliance all the time, and, more importantly, because one of the siblings said "Do you work for Google by any chance? It's good manners to technically declare any conflict of interest. Not technically required, but technically suggested by the technicians at HN".

Though i've mentioned in numerous comments that I work for Google, I felt it only fair to mention it again.

3. I have twisted nothing, IMHO, only asserted there was an implication. That is not twisting words. That is claiming he implied something.

In any case, the original statement is actually factually incorrect, even if you remove the clear implication. Let's assume for a second that we remove the internet part and stick with "obligation to release". It's still wrong, as there is no obligation to release anything, only one to make a written offer. That is not the same obligation as "release source code". The have an obligation to honor that written offer, which may later result in a release, but the obligation to make a written offer is not the same as an obligation to release.

(not to mention that twisting the language of the GPL to imply an obligation to make a written offer is the same as an obligation to release code, as done by my parent, shows that it's not just lawyers who do it ...)


> The have an obligation to honor that written offer, which may later result in a release, but the obligation to make a written offer is not the same as an obligation to release.

The distinction appears to be academic at best, and therefore your objection to the grand-grand-whatever-parent seems pointless - thus the confusion here.

edit : just saw your clarification as to why you made the comment in the first place. Fair enough.


FWIW: It turns out not to be academic in practice.

About 25-30% of the complaints about GPL violations i've seen (for example, on gpl-violations mailing lists, though at least there, there are more valid ones recently) are actually cases where the company has made a written offer, and the person's complaint is this is a GPL violation and they should have released the source instead.

Of course, this has changed over the years for the worse (in the sense that the percentage of actual compliance seems to be dropping), but it's still not uncommon.


If you make me a written offer to provide source code and then I follow up and write to you asking for the source code, and then following that you ship me a CD with source code on it, for all intents and purposes you have released the source code to me. I'm pretty sure that the definition of "release" is the problem in this thread.


I have 2 different ways to respond...

1. It is required the offer be made, there is reasonable probability that the offer will be accepted and Once accepted google is bound to meet this obligation.

Wouldn't that mean there is a reasonable probability that google would be required to release?

2. if not... ill append the original comment myself for clarity... cause me and that guy are tight...

What he meant to say was: "It's not as if they were making us a gift... As soon as they sold their first device it was required by the Linux kernel GPL2 license to release the kernel source code [if an offer they are required to make is accepted]"

Wouldn't that be require to release by proxy anyway...

It's like I always tell my mother in law that the door is open. In fact I am required to say that the door is always open...

I can prey that the soul sucking spawn of the nether realms never comes knocking but in effect I am obligated to provide.


I'm not saying this is a bad thing...but my gut instinct is that this is a business decision and not "doing the right thing" unless by "doing the right thing" you meant doing the thing that makes good business sense.


> Again, the parent i responded to implied Google has some affirmative obligation to place the source code on the internet

from where did you extrapolate this? i can't find any reference to the internet, implied or otherwise. does the term "release" carry legal weight in court with implications i'm unaware of?


> We do it anyway, because it's the right thing to do, but ...

I don't really understand where this is going. Is there some implication that Google would stand to benefit in any way from not releasing the code?


No, it's just a common misconception about the GPL, and it actually pops up on GPL violation lists, so i figured i'd take the time to point out it's not correct, and apparently start a large group of random replies about it.

I personally think the written offer approach should never have been added, but ...


That written offer must accompany the physical product. Google did not do this as far as I know. I mean, if we are going to be technical about this, the GPL states that even if you distribute the code via a "network server", you still must provide, accompanying the physical product, a "written offer" (it's the same clause) to give the user said code via that path.

Really, all doe88's point was is that when Google sold this thing, they were already on the hook for this: he didn't even mention the "Internet" (your technicality), he just said "release", and providing a written offer in the box would have satisfied that. I don't even think doe88 was aggravated at Google: he seemed to just be pointing out that this isn't really news.


You are thinking of GPLv3, not GPLv2, when you speak of the network server distribution. :)


I can see you're trying to perform some kind of public service by splitting legal hairs about what is/is not required but by doing so you are actually hurting the interests of your employer.

By stating that Google is not required to provide the code as offered but only on written request you are very much going by the letter of the document and not by the reality of the situation, which is that by doing that you'd be putting up an unnecessary barrier.

So even if you are 100% on the ball in this thread you have still managed to score an own goal. When people use words like 'required' they don't mean this in the legal narrowest possible interpretation of the words, they mean as in morally obligated. You can then put on your IP lawyer hat and show how good you are at splitting hairs but consider that you are not just speaking for yourself here but for google as a whole by invoking them and appealing to authority in the way you do.


He's not trying to perform a public service. This is a thread demonstrably populated with whacked-out ideas of what the GPL says, he's a subject matter expert, and he's correcting them. He is performing a public service. You've been here long enough to see that, so I think you should start by acknowledging that.


He already said he thought they were morally required to release the code on the net. Also, what are you talking about?


Own goal? You're the one who put the goalposts there.


He's a lawyer, it's his job to split hairs.


must be the case otherwise why would they not release the Glass platform code? The kernel code is not that interesting anyways.


Are all of Google's lawyers also hackers/developers? I'm amazed/impressed.


It is sad to see Google get into the technicalities of things rather than doing the right thing in the spirit of doing so.


Errr, as i said, we do it because it's the right thing to do.

In any case, i'm a lawyer, they pay me to care about technicalities and argue about pointless stuff. What were you expecting?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUKmq7UMJys


Not blaming you. You did what you were paid to do. What I am disappointed at is the fact that Google chose to only open the code that it HAD to do. It did choose the mechanism that made it easier to consume but that is besides the point.

No point arguing here. Not trusting Google to do the right thing these days anyways.


I'm curious. Do you also blame Apple and Microsoft and Facebook and Twitter for not doing the right thing when you don't see their full code base on github?


None of these companies you mentioned have a "Don't Be Evil" policy, nor they have a lawyer posting here claiming that they are doing a "public service"


Since Google doesn't share their bread and butter PageRank algorithm, does that make them evil? Also if releasing said algo would cause them to lose massive marketshare, wouldn't that also be evil (to their shareholders and employees)?


I am simply pointing the fact that if you are going to claim yourself as the "good guy" the community will hold you to a higher standard, in reply to the parent comment. No one is expecting Google to do any charity, but Google themselves sell this image of do-good and pro-open source, so why the surprise when the community asks them to walk the talk?


I guess for the HN crowd enough will never be enough. What if they are keeping part of their codebase closed because they want to make money off of it? And if this is so anti good-guy, then if they released it and then the project was cancelled because they weren't able to recoup their costs is this still good-guy? IE: No more development from Google on this cutting edge product could be seen as a net loss for everyone vs. a win for 100% open source demands.


choosing the mechanism that made it easier to consume is not beside the point because google didn't have to do that. we know two things; 1, they had to make the source available, 2, they released the source online. We cannot assume they only did this because they had to, especially when they went above and beyond the requirements. With this logic, anybody that doesn't break the law only does so because of the law.


You are not doing them any favors, first by not disclosing your employment at Google and second by what you said.

If I were Larry Page or Ballmer or...I'd force every employee to declare "Disclosure: I work for [Company,] but the opinions are mine"


As mentioned, i've disclosed my affiliation numerous times in these types of discussions, and it's certainly not hidden anywhere. I'm not writing public blog posts or articles, so i feel no urge to start and end every hacker news comment with "I work for Google". In fact, when I did, i'll point out someone said it wasn't relevant!

As for the rest, honestly, that just tells me I wouldn't want to work for you. If you don't believe your employees can have a reasonable discussion about the actual requirements vs perceived requirements of an open source license, that would be a sucky workplace, and it would make you a less desirable employer

The same is true if you can't have a discussion about random esoteric areas of licensing without making assumptions about the views of an employer.

If you want to know what Google's views are, i'm happy to tell you, otherwise, the world would generally be a better place if people would stop having to add disclaimers all over the place when having normal discussions (As a random aside, if you ever have the occasion to join a mailing list that has lawyers from multiple companies, about 95% of the text is disclaimers)


>> As for the rest, honestly, that just tells me I wouldn't want to work for you.

So we agree on something.

>>"If you want to know what Google's views are, i'm happy to tell you, otherwise, the world would generally be a better place if people would stop having to add disclaimers all over the place when having normal discussions "

A lawyer that twisted in a pretzel over some useless technicality (we'll send it to the person/s that requested it vs posting it online) is now a phony champion of straight talking. Wow!

They are two reasons why people should disclose their affiliations: one, so we know what's behind the words. If a company gives you a paycheck and you defend them or bash their competitors, people have to take that in consideration. Only in Google Land are bought opinions more important, or "ads are just more answers."

And then there's company policy. Google would fire you in a heartbeat if you caused them harm, make no mistake. But apparently you know "Google's positions" so go right ahead.

But frankly, if I could blacklist you, I would. Just for not disclosing that Google is your employer as you defended their "doing the right thing".


In the original post, he said "we could ship...". That's a pretty clear disclosure of his Googleness to me.


Wouldn't you also have to make a disclaimer for the mostly anti google/ google glass posts you have made?


Wouldn't you also have to make a disclaimer for the mostly anti google/ google glass posts you have made?

what disclaimer? That I am not their fanboy?


Again with this strain of comments that tries to demonize HN participants for where they work, as if direct experience with the subject matter of the thread is a bad thing. In this case, a subthread on OSS licensing and Google happens to be inhabited by the IP lawyer who managed the OSS licensing process for Google, and you found a way to be upset about that.


Please do not generalize.

One, I wished he had said right of the bat that "I am the Google lawyer responsible for...." and two, not twist words making online posting of the code a heroic act.


Ok, anonymous "if I could blacklist you I would" guy. I'll try to be more careful about generalizing.


>> Again, the parent i responded to implied Google has some affirmative obligation to place the source code on the internet. They don't.

He never said that. He said: As soon as they sold their first device it was required by the Linux kernel GPL2 license to release the kernel source code.

RELEASE to a person or to 5 billion, online or papyrus is the same. Technically and all. For a guy that clings to a word and tries to write a book on its meaning, you sure screwed up.


>> Sure, but the parent said "it was required by the Linux kernel GPL2 license to release the kernel source code"

>> This is not technically true.

You sir, are, technically...

Do you work for Google by any chance? It's good manners to technically declare any conflict of interest. Not technically required, but technically suggested by the technicians at HN


I've mentioned a number of times i work for google, and try to do so when appropriate. I removed it from my HN profile after I started getting folks bringing it up randomly.


So do you work for Google, or do you do work for Google? I only ask because in earlier comments you lectured on the correct use of terminology, yet having said explicitly you work for Google you now talk about the company in the 3rd person plural as if you are not an employee.


I think this is an unfair standard, and although I am a founder at my place of employment you can be assured that I will not use "we" to describe my positions on topics without sign off. As a general rule my opinions and those of the firm are divergent.

When I speak I speak only for myself.


It seems practically required, since the only thing such an action would by them is scorn.


They clearly planned for that, because if they'd preferred to keep it closed-sourced, they'd gone with BSD. Just like Apple did. And it's not like Google is lacking resources for making Glass run on BSD instead of Linux.


Just out of curiousity, if they didn't release the code given the GPL2 license, could they be sued in private courts to release it?


I'm not a specialist at all of these questions but I would say that kernel modifications are not worth taking such a big risk. And if they wanted to avoid publishing the code of some parts of their kernel implementation maybe they could instead make a kernel module and in this case I believe it is accepted of not releasing the source code of the module.

But in any case as mentionned in other comments I believe the interesting code is more high level, or server side.


They could be sued, but only by copyright holders of Linux source code.


...and wouldn't that be anyone who has ever submitted a patch that has been accepted by Linus?


In theory, yes, but at least in the US, you'd also have to register the copyright. Plus a random patch runs the risk of getting a decision that it was de-minimis, etc.


>you'd also have to register the copyright

But you can do that after the infringement has taken place, as long as you do so within some period of time (60 days I think?) after you become aware of the infringement.


Yes, you can do it after infringement, but it is a pre-requisite to actually filing a lawsuit (unless you want that lawsuit dismissed immediately :P)


Considering legal costs (which, while I imagine are lower than patent litigation, must be formidable for random Joe), I'd imagine that some 'entity' would have to do this on the behalf of said contributor(s).


That entity would probably be the Linux Foundation in this case.


Recipients of copies can still claim false product/advertisement. In EU law, if the consumer can claim that the expected product was one with source code included (thanks to GPL notifications), certain laws gets into effect.

First, the consumer has the right for compensation (normally the price of the product). Second, the company will be forced to stop claiming that the product is under GPL. This then leads to either willing infringement (ie, removing the GPL notification once its been there), or continue misleading the consumer (Very large fines).

So far, I have not heard of any case like that. The closest was a case regarding contract law, which is tangent.


Someone like this guy - http://gpl-violations.org


Probably more preventing them from selling it rather than forcing them to release it.


Misleading headline; they released the boring code and none of the interesting code.


It's not misleading headline, it's just a problem with tech blogs, they probably read this news on HN and stole it and tried to make it sensational to get some cheap traffic. The don't understand the code or it's implications for that matter. What is released is kernel source code (which hardly any one cares about) vs source code for google glass framework (which would be more interesting).


Which is rather sad, coming from Ars Technica; they weren't always just another tech blog. E.G. Jon Stokes published fantastic pieces on computer architecture there, and Ryan Paul's coverage of open source was well-informed.


>It's not misleading headline, it's just a problem with tech blogs, they probably read this news on HN and stole it and tried to make it sensational to get some cheap traffic.

While that's generally how these outfits tend to work, Ars has built a pretty solid reputation for in-depth analysis and not having link-baity headlines.


I like Ars, but today's Ars is less Anandtech and more Verge. Which is to say, they indulge in their fair share of link-baity gadget-blog-type posts. They're not beyond redemption by any means, but the sad truth is that Ars doesn't always do the kind of in-depth analysis that they once did.


What is the difference between kernel source code and the source code for google glass framework? I'm having a hard time understanding this concept. If they released their kernel code doesn't it mean they released their glass source code?


The glass code is an application running on top of the kernel.


ah ic. Thank You. So what is point of releasing the kernel code when no one has the glass code?


They are legally required to release the kernel code.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_General_Public_License


Okay, Thank you for all your help in helping me understand. From what I understand, this article was written by a clueless writer that wanted to jump on the 'glass' bandwagon. He falsely claimed that google released glass source code when what Google actually released was kernel code that means nothing to developers and it was code that Google was legally required to release.

Instead of letting this article die off, some people in HN were equally clueless and upvoted this article because of the misleading title. They upvoted either without reading the article, or read the article and did not have the technical ability to detect the bullshit.

This article should not be trending on the front page.


Saying that the release means nothing to developers is probably more of an exaggeration than the headline in question.

Even if it is legally required it is still interesting that it has been done for those who are following the device.

I'm guessing the code release contains drivers etc. specific to the device, which would be very useful for hacking.

(Note also that they explain that the entire stack's code wasn't released early in the article.)


I can't upvote this enough


Once it became the top comment on this discussion, further upvoting would be redundant.


> Android code is released in two parts—changes to the Linux kernel are released under the GPLv2 free software license, just as Linux itself is, while most of the code that makes Android recognizable to users is released under the Apache License. With Glass, just the Linux code has been released.

Agreed


Can you elaborate? Which parts are missing?



Surprised it took me this long to realize that Ars doesn't have much better quality control than VentureBeat et al, but it's crystal clear now. Tim Bray's twitter is obviously unofficial, and the headline uses broadness and extrapolation to make it misleading in a way that makes it seem more interesting.

Farewell, Ars Technica of old...


Did you see the "A-Z of Ubuntu" gallery recently? It was literally a few screenshots of Ubuntu variants and less than a paragraph under each.


Nope, missed that.


I've heard that Ars' commenters are of higher qualities than other sites. Does this still continue despite the decline of article quality that you describe?


I suspect it's true in general - it's the one thing that still draws me to /. No point of view doesn't get an impassioned defense thrown at it no matter the individual merit.


Hey Google, disrupt the industry and open source the hardware as well.


Not sure why you are being downvoted. Google open sourcing Glass could bring on lots of manufacturers in very quickly and also create lots of derivative works. Google would theoretically have its core Glass software running on every device.

It's essentially taking their model with Android, which IMHO has been enormously successful, one step further. In two years time ZTE could be making 'The Reflector' a $100 version of Glass that has been been created from Glass' open designs. Of course their will be software modification as well, but theoretically just like Android, Google will remain at it's core.

I can see why Google will probably make more money by selling them for $1,500 a pop. But I think they could also make money by shear volume of increased search, maps, play store, etc. This seems to be inline with what they try to do now.

I hope that Google does not pull a Facebook and start forcing advertisements into everything. If that is the case it could be at the expense of the entire Glass platform which I think will be very cool.


I think it's being downvoted because it's got very little information. It's a seemingly naive random thought about Google's go-to-market strategy for Glass and considers nothing about Google's businesses or the opportunity cost of taking that action. Your post is probably the elaboration that it needed to avoid being downvoted. (I didn't downvote - just trying to explain why someone might)


Your right. My comment stemmed from my frustration as the many close sourced hardware being pushed by the OEMs and ODMs. I should have elaborated my comment further. Lesson learned.


I hear you. I'd love for Google to fully open up Glass. Might not be as appealing an idea from their perspective, though.


dumb question here (and I do apologize for it) - but I never really understood how you can see someone is being downvoted. I know when I'm downvoted because I lose karma - How do you know what someone else is being downvoted?


If votes is <= 0, the text color changes from black to light grey. He is now in the black, but the comment would have been made when that wasn't the case.


thank you!


Disrupt what industry? Google is the only player right now.


The consumer hardware industry.

There are a few shops that sell/release open source hardware, but I guarantee open sourcing Glass would make gigantic waves.


The industry for capturing data, the industry for ubiquitous information presence, the industry for augmented assistance for the disable, list could go on.

Imagine if IBM did not build the first PC with an open architecture, would it have caught on the way it did? Google should take the lead the open up the hardware and really make the glass affordable for everyone.


Just throwing code over the wall is such a poor imitation of open source.

Develop in the open--reviews, patches, bugs, design discussions--everything should be visible. Let's not pretend that this is really what "open source" is about--it's about everyone making contributions, visibly, as they happen.

Anyone who takes this kernel and actually adds features is risking duplicating work or breaking future compatibility if Google ever decides to implement the same or otherwise conflicting features in different ways. This happens frequently with Android. Everyone is still stuck waiting on releases, and the fact that there is code involved is basically an afterthought.


Why not open source all the code? What does Google have to gain from closed sourcing even part of Google glass?


There are three possibilities:

  1. Google wants to monetize the novel features of Glass
  2. Google is bound by licenses for the technology, and is unable to open source certain bits
  3. They will open source everything eventually, but decided to rush this bit for publicity reasons


There are lots more possibilities, but the one that I think makes the most chance is:

  4. Google is required to release the kernel code under the GPL
No such requirement exists for the other code.

The big pay-off for google is that to use glass you need to use google. If the devices were 'open' then you would not need google to use glass and they'd be in a cue-cat situation.


I sadly agree with this. I love Google and their open web attitude, however you cannot look at Apple's success over the past 5 years and not go green with envy. I fear that Google is going to want to try to copy Apple's business model. Of course it's the obvious thing to do but it's sad from a consumer's standpoint.


Or they're trying to not help the amazon's of the world that just fork their product and remove the monetizing bits of it, and replace it with their own monetizing bits.


cue-cat didn't retail for $1500


The absolute price is not important. What is important is whether or not it is subsidized at the current price.


Money.

Also, the Ars Technica article does not discuss what I suspect is the most interesting part of Google Glass: the code they run on their servers.

There, it's more or less the same story: they release commodity lower layers, but keep the more interesting upper layers to themselves, for the same reason: money.


Maybe to protect this product from the competition ? Why releasing the source code if they provide some good API ? I understand that open sourcing is better for us, the consumers, but Google is still planning to make money out of these glasses.


I'm still betting it'll be largely impossible to run a standard Linux distro on the device without a massive amount of hacking.

The kernel will no doubt require binary blobs for OpenGL drivers (IIRC it's an OMAP CPU so this is likely) and because they decided they don't like glibc the OpenGL drivers on the device will be a pain to link against. I always find this annoying while hacking on Android devices.


So they only released the Linux ... and now we can have Ubuntu for google glass.

On I side note - it is a sad world when the fact that device is unlocked is news instead of the norm.


We've been living in that 'sad world' to a while.


For completeness of the headline (specifically 'declares platform open'), Google needs to also make the Mirror API available to those, who are not part of Explorer Program, may be via a simulator.


Judging by the threads, no good deed goes unpunished.


So it's open now but you're still not allowed to make money with applications? That's a strange definition of open to me.


Hey Saurik - don't take the hating so personally man. Google gave you Glass precisely because they knew you'd rock the boat and piss a bunch of people off (and get people talking about Glass in the process). You're doing a wonderful job of that. Be proud.

In reference to: https://plus.google.com/118343182830485155505/posts/ERUJ8e1y...


As a side note, that's a good example of my biggest problem with Glass as a product. Not even Google knows what to do with it, and they are expecting hackers to "show me something cool" -- Wait, what?? No, YOU TELL ME FIRST what Glass is supposed to do, then I might think about devoting some of my unpaid time to hack some "shit" for you.

Unless Google also open sources the Glass hardware, any "contributions" to their source code will be benefiting only Google and not the open source community.


Wow I totally thought this guy (linked in parent) was an actor when I saw him in last year's Google Glass ad campaigns, not a Google employee.


That's nice.

Can we have the source code for Google Reader too, while we're at it?


Why? It would be useless to you; the effort required to write a web-based RSS client is as nothing compared to re-implementing all the internal infrastructure that Reader depends on.

If you want to run your own RSS client, starting with NewsBlur[1] or Tiny Tiny RSS[2] would get you much further than being able to see the Reader source.

[1] https://github.com/samuelclay/NewsBlur

[2] http://tt-rss.org/


What was so special about google reader that you couldn't just code yourself? It's an RSS reader, right?

http://code.google.com/p/feedparser/

I wrote a website that read RSS feeds for me years ago using that. It's really straight forward...


There are many other RSS readers out there that are open source; having the source of Google's wouldn't be much different. And the part that would be different is all the code to integrate it with Google's infrastructure, which wouldn't be particularly useful to anyone who doesn't run said infrastructure.


This reminds me of Steve Jobs iPhone first presentation and hackers jumping onto the platform. However, Jobs had vision and charisma to follow. This doesn't make me as excited.




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