Google's new "open" warfare

I like this new Google. It's a company that has the potential to win in a very different way from how Microsoft won the desktop wars: Through open, rather than through closed.

ReadWriteWeb's Richard MacManus had the chance to talk with Google's Tom Stocky, a director of Product Management, about its increased emphasis on developers . The result is an interesting look into the mind of Google as it pertains to developers.

MacManus asked Stocky about Adobe's and Microsoft's efforts to blend the web with the desktop through Rich Internet Applications. Stock's response is highly intriguing:

Stocky replied that typically companies sell the underlying proprietary platform and then try to get developers to build on top of that (he didn't specifically mention them, but he's obviously referring to MS and Adobe). However, he said, Google's mission is to build on top of the open web platform. Stocky said that Google not only aims to build on the open Web platform, but actively improve it.

I like that. Google wants to make the web a first-class application citizen, and is committed to investing the resources to make this happen. To get there, it needs to engage developers and, in turn, the open-source communities of which they increasingly take part.

I like this new Google. It's a company that has the potential to win in a very different way from how Microsoft won the desktop wars: Through open, rather than through closed. Yes, proprietary software will play an active role, but not the only role, as in Microsoft's empire. The times seem to be a'changin'.

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About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.

     

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