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. "We want to hire a couple of folks to help make OpenOffice better."
Google may not be releasing an open-source operating system or a desktop suite, but the company is promoting, supporting and using open-source software. In a Ziff Davis Internet interview, Chris DiBona, Google's open source program manager, said that while he can't "talk about any future products," he also added that, to the best of his knowledge "Google has no plans to release an operating system or an office suite."
"I couldn't help but make a joke with the title, because it's seemingly right on the money. You see, Google is getting ready to take the wraps off of a new service called Google Base. If it can be posted online, it would appear that they would, in fact, prefer it belong to them. At least, they'll store it for you and make it searchable."
Sources close to the joint efforts between Google and Sun say rampant speculation about hosted desktop productivity offerings and common operating systems is way off base. Insiders with knowledge of the joint plans to promote and enhance the OpenOffice.org desktop productivity suite say it is far more likely that Sun and Google will find ways to promote both OpenOffice.org and Google Toolbar, including having Toolbar included as part of OpenOffice.org, StarOffice, and even OpenSolaris and Sun's branded Solaris products.
It seems like all hell has broken loose in the internet services and instant messaging arena. Just yesterday, Microsoft and Yahoo announced that they will make their IM technology work together, and now Google and ComCast have shown interest in AOL. All this just shortly after Google and Sun teamed up.
Google co-founder Sergey Brin has quashed speculation that the giant ad broker is to introduce a web-based Office suite. "We don't have any plans," he told Web 2.0 conference organizer John Battelle. However Brin left the door open a little. Documents would be easier to work with in the future, he promised, but he didn't think a fat client was the way to go.
"If 'GoogleOffice' ever materializes, it won't be going head-to-head with Microsoft Office. Instead, expect some new MSN services in the pipeline to emerge as Redmond's secret weapons." On a related note, Sun's StarOffice 8 is now available as a free download for teachers and students.
San Francisco's plan to blanket the city with wireless Internet access at little or no cost to users might bring a smile to the face of residents who would like to save money. But an array of entrenched telecommunications interests, including Internet service providers and telephone and cable television companies, are far from beaming.
Sun and Google today announced an agreement to promote and distribute their software technologies to millions of users around the world. The agreement aims to make it easier for users to freely obtain Sun's Java Runtime Environment, the Google Toolbar and the OpenOffice.org office productivity suite, helping millions of users worldwide to participate in the next wave of Internet growth. More here.
In just seven years, Google Inc. has morphed from a bare-bones online search engine into a technological octopus that seems to sprout another intriguing tentacle every other week.
Google chairman and CEO Eric Schmidt will sit down with Sun Microsystems CEO Scott McNealy on Tuesday morning to outline a collaborative effort between the two companies. It's not clear what the partnership will entail, but Sun has already begun to hype the event. More about this here.
Google's Summer of Code, a program that matched computer science students with free and open source software projects and paid for results, is over. Despite some organizational problems, the SOC attracted an overwhelming response from both students and projects, and early indications are that the program has produced a wide range of projects and attracted a number of promising students to the FOSS communities. Whether the program will be repeated, however, remains undetermined.
Rumors are swirling around a FAQ page for Google Secure Access Beta (of course) software that appears to be a VPN client. "If you choose to use Google Secure Access, your internet traffic will be encrypted and sent through Google's servers to the Internet. The data that is received will then be encrypted and sent back through our servers to your computer."
Google's one-of-a-kind computer network gives it a chance to surpass Microsoft to become the most dominant company in tech, according to the author of a recently published book on the search giant.
When Google unveiled its instant messaging client yesterday, there was only one problem: Google Talk requires a Gmail account, which has been invitation-only since its beta debut in 2004. This changed on Thursday, however, as Google opened Gmail to anyone in the United States with a mobile phone. Other countries will follow.
Google has launched an instant-messaging (IM) program that allows text chat and computer-to-computer voice connections, a move that highlights the search giant's increasing competition with Yahoo, Microsoft and America Online. You can download Google Talk here. Google also makes it very clear that you do not need Google Talk to use their service, and they provide detailed instructions on using other IM clients to connect to Google Talk. Update: Micheal Robertson announces partnership with Google to promote the use of open standards in VoIP/IM.