(2018-06-06) Ford Github Is Microsoft's $7.5 Billion Undo Button

Paul Ford: GitHub is Microsoft’s $7.5 Billion Undo Button

GitHub represents a big Undo button for Microsoft, too. For many years, Microsoft officially hated open source software. The company was Steve Ballmer turning bright colors, sweating through his shirt, and screaming like a Visigoth. But after many years of ritual humiliation in the realms of search, mapping, and especially mobile, Microsoft apparently accepted that the 1990s were over

Git is one of those things that, in my experience, people who love computers … just love

When you drink and talk about git, the conversation tends to drift into strange territories. If only everything worked like this! Why are we still sending files around via email? Why aren’t there multiple branching versions of everything? Why do we pretend that there’s any canonical version of anything? (Because we have to make money.)

Git acknowledges a long-held, shared, and hard-to-express truth, which is that the world is ever-shifting and nothing is ever finished

The way you truly win big in software is to take something deeply abstract, weird, and confusing, then put an interface on top that makes it look like the most normal thing in creation.

I had idle fantasies about what the world of technology would look like if, instead of files, we were all sharing repositories and managing our lives in git

For years, I wondered if GitHub would be able to pull that off—take the weirdness of git and normalize it for the masses, help make a post-file world. Ultimately, though, it was a service made by developers to meet the needs of other developers. Can’t fault them for that. (CollaborationWare)


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