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Author Topic: Free Software Magazine Essay on Google App Engine: Is It Evil?  (Read 4675 times)


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It seems to me that the Free Software Magazine website has started to turn out more interesting and relevant articles recently.

Here's a very readable piece on the newly announced Google App Engine, that takes a decidedly balanced and middle-of-the-road look at Google's policies and aims.

Make no mistake: Google App Engine is designed to make Google profit, not serve the public good. They could have based their service entirely on free software, and contributed any improvements they felt were needed, back to the projects that have supplied them with the tools for economic success. But they haven’t provided such a fully-capable system in the GAE SDK. So they’re not making it easy for you to deploy elsewhere—they definitely want deploying on Google to be the path of least resistance.

Is that “evil”? Well, no, not really. But it isn’t exactly “good” either. Which means, if you’re a developer, you have to make the same tightrope decision: will you choose convenience and merely try to “not be evil”, or will you choose freedom and try to actively “do good”? I can’t condemn either option, but you should make the choice with your eyes open.


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Google App Engine...
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2008, 01:48 PM »
It has been 6 months since the release of the Google App engine... has anyone used it? Is the SDK nice? Are limitations significant? What kind of apps can one build with it? Examples?

Basically, is it worth taking time to checkout this beast?
Real generosity toward the future lies in giving all to the present -- Albert Camus --