Microsoft's GitHub acquisition comes with some worries, many of which we've already convered. Its user base wasn't expecting their millions of lines of code to be in the hands of a software giant, and many have jumped ship.
However, it's worth presenting some alternate perspectives and the philosophy behind the purchase. Soon-to-be GitHub CEO Nat Friedman took to Reddit to assuage developer's concerns about the acquisition, and he did so with considerable grace.
A key talking point since the purchase has been GitHub's ability to be independent under Microsoft's wing. Users are somewhat expecting they'll have to use their Microsoft account to log into GitHub, but Friedman says that isn't the case.
“We love GitHub login,” he told user clelwell. “Your GitHub account is your developer identity, and many users are accustomed to signing into developer tools and services (e.g. Travis, Circle) with their GitHub accounts. So, if anything, we may decide to add GitHub as a login option to Microsoft.”
Improvements and Praise
Friedman also says that GitHub will not see radical changes like advertising on public project repositories, and that Microsoft will continue to develop GitHub's Atom text editor, despite the cross-over with VSCode.
In terms of improvements, the tech giant is considering improving search, making signing easier on desktop and Atom, and GVFS for Linux.
Speaking of, the Linux Foundation has praised Microsoft's acquisition. The Redmond giant joined the foundation two years ago and has since seen a turnaround in its perception. Speaking on the official blog, executive director Jim Zemlin said:
“This is pretty good news for the world of Open Source and we should celebrate Microsoft's smart move[…] Open source developers changed our world. Microsoft gets that, which is why they purchased GitHub. I for one am excited to see the improvements they'll make and will be shocked if Nat were to screw it up.”