Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Today, Google launched a new web browser called Google Chrome. At the same time, we are releasing all of the code as open source under a permissive BSD license. The open source project is called Chromium - after the metal used to make chrome.
Why did Google release the source code?
Primarily it's because one of the fundamental goals of the Chromium project is to help drive the web forward. Open source projects like Firefox and WebKit have led the way in defining the next generation of web technologies and standards, and we felt the best way we could help was to follow suit, and be as open as we could. To be clear, improving the web in this way also has some clear benefits for us as a company. With a richer set of APIs we can build more interesting apps allowing people to do more online. The more people do online, the more they can use our services. At any rate, we have worked on this project by ourselves for long enough - it's time for us to engage with the wider web community so that we can move on to the next set of challenges.
We believe that open source works not only because it allows people to join us and improve our products, but also (and more importantly) because it means other projects are able to use the code we've developed. Where we've developed innovative new technology, we hope that other projects can use it to make their products better, just as we've been able to adopt code from other open source projects to make our product better.
How will we be working with the open source community?
Today, you can visit our project website at www.chromium.org, where you can get the latest source code or the freshest development build. If you're interested in keeping track of what's going on, you can join one of our discussion groups, where you can participate in development discussions and keep track of bugs as they're filed and fixed. Maybe you'll want to fix a few, too! You'll also find information on reporting bugs and all the various other aspects of the project. We hope you'll check it out!
This is the Chromium blog. The posts here will be of a mostly technical nature, discussing the design theory and implementation details of work we've done or are doing. Over the next few weeks there'll be a number of posts that give a high level tour of the most important aspects of the browser.
Finally, if you've not yet done so, take Google Chrome for a spin. You can download it from http://www.google.com/chrome/.