Later today (or whenever the reported deal is made official), Microsoft will have plenty of questions to answer for concerned developers and programmers who rely on the platform to host their code.
Microsoft is reportedly buying the code-sharing site GitHub, a developer-focused startup that has become a crucial part of the programming industry since it was founded in 2008. The company chose to sell to Microsoft partially because of Microsoft's CEO Satya Nadella, according to the reports and those close to the project. Their spread threatened Microsoft's control over what software got installed on the world's PCs.
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But despite its popularity with enterprise users, individual developers and open source projects, GitHub has never turned a profit and chances are that the company decided that an acquisition was preferable over trying to IPO. This act by the software giant would be a move described by many, as going back to the roots of how Microsoft started in the first place.
Others wondered about Microsoft's renewed power in software, particularly since Microsoft also owns LinkedIn, potentially giving it a huge leg up in the field of technical recruiting. Now, assuming Bloomberg's report holds, the code repository service and developer community will be absorbed by Microsoft. Other coders are then able to tinker with and improve the code. "Acquiring GitHub helps them with this but more strategically, and gives easier access to Azure services and tools", he said. While GitHub's losses have been significant - it lost $66 million over three quarters in 2016 - it had revenue of $98 million in nine months of that year. Former Xamarin chief Nat Friedman will replace the outgoing GitHub CEO and co-founder, Chris Wanstrath.
While GitHub is home to more than just open source software, if such a migration came to pass, it would be a very bad look both for GitHub and Microsoft. However, there are Microsoft products and services - for example, Visual Studio Team System (VSTS) - that Microsoft will need to decide how to integrate with GitHub.