Microsoft snaps up GitHub for $7.5 billion

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As we anticipated yesterday, Microsoft has reached an agreement to buy GitHub, the source repository and collaboration platform, in a deal worth $7.5 billion. The all-stock deal is expected to close by the end of the year, subject to regulatory approval in the US and EU.

Decade-old GitHub is built on Git, the open source version control software originally written by Linux creator Linus Torvalds. Git is a distributed version control system: each developer has their own repository that they make changes to, and these changes can be propagated between repositories to share those changes. GitHub provides a repository hosting service: a place to put those repositories so that other developers can readily access them. Since its inception, it has become a mainstay of the open source world, with countless projects—including Microsoft projects such as the Visual Studio Code text editor and the .NET runtime—using GitHub repositories as a place to publish their code to the world and coordinate collaborative development. In total, some 28 million developers use GitHub, and there are 85 million code repositories.

Microsoft has reportedly acquired GitHub

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Microsoft has reportedly acquired GitHub, and could announce the deal as early as Monday. Bloomberg reports that the software giant has agreed to acquire GitHub, and that the company chose Microsoft partly because of CEO Satya Nadella. Business Insider first reported that Microsoft had been in talks with GitHub recently.

GitHub is a vast code repository that has become popular with developers and companies hosting their projects, documentation, and code. Apple, Amazon, Google, and many other big tech companies use GitHub. Microsoft is the top contributor to the site, and has more than 1,000 employees actively pushing code to repositories on GitHub. Microsoft even hosts its own original Windows File Manager source code on GitHub. The service was last valued at $2 billion back in 2015, but it’s not clear exactly how much Microsoft has paid to acquire GitHub.

Microsoft has been rapidly investing in open source technology since Satya Nadella took over the CEO role. Microsoft has open sourced PowerShell, Visual Studio Code, and the Microsoft Edge JavaScript engine. Microsoft also partnered with Canonical to bring Ubuntu to Windows 10, and acquired Xamarin to assist with mobile app development.

Microsoft is also using the open source Git version control system for Windows development, and the company even brought SQL Server to Linux. Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code, which lets developers build and debug web and cloud applications, has soared in popularity with developers. Microsoft’s GitHub acquisition will likely mean we’ll start to see even closer integration between Microsoft’s developer tools and the service. At Build last month, Microsoft continued its close work with GitHub by integrating the service into the company’s App Center for developers.

Apollo 11: do they accept pull requests?

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The system responsible for the first moon landing is now readily available online, after an enterprising former NASA intern uploaded the Apollo Guidance Computer code to Github this week.

Although the code for the MIT-designed system has long been available to interested researchers, it's never been quite this at hand. Quartz has an excellent, thorough breakdown, but the jokes and asides are a special point of interest.

Reddit has already taken a look under the hood, and uncovered some of the best tidbits. For one, you'll find "BURN_BABY_BURN--MASTER_IGNITION_ROUTINE.agc" in there. In another spot, you can see a note about "TRASHY LITTLE SUBROUTINES."

One particularly poetic coder even included a bit of Shakespeare, although the reason for it is a little opaque now:

# THE FOLLOWING QUOTATION IS PROVIDED THROUGH THE COURTESY OF THE AUTHORS.

#

# "IT WILL BE PROVED TO THY FACE THAT THOU HAST MEN ABOUT THEE THAT

# USUALLY TALK OF A NOUN AND A VERB, AND SUCH ABOMINABLE WORDS AS NO

# CHRISTIAN EAR CAN ENDURE TO HEAR."

You can explore the code yourself here.

ChakraCore GitHub repository is now open

In a December 2015 talk at JSConf US, we announced that we would be open-sourcing the key components of the Chakra JavaScript engine that powers Microsoft Edge. Today, we are excited to share with you that we’ve just made the sources for ChakraCore available under the MIT License at the ChakraCore GitHub repository. Going forward, we’ll be developing the key components of Chakra in the open.

The ChakraCore repository provides a fully supported and open-source standalone JavaScript engine, with the same characteristics as the Microsoft Edge’s Chakra engine, to embed in projects, innovate on top of and contribute back to. We will be accepting community contributions and input to ChakraCore. Once the changes from any pull request have been vetted, our goal is to ensure that all changes find their way to be shipped as a part of the JavaScript engine powering Microsoft Edge and the Universal Windows Platform on Windows 10.

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We are also publishing a roadmap for ChakraCore on our GitHub repository. With today’s release, you can build ChakraCore on Windows 7 SP1 or above with Visual Studio 2013 or 2015 with C++ support installed. In the future, we are committed to bringing it to other platforms, starting with Linux, and will keep the roadmap updated with details and status updates as we make progress. As a first step towards this goal, we have cleanly separated out Chakra’s JIT compiler, producing a build configuration that builds just the interpreter and runtime. This smaller build target is what we will initially enable cross platform porting. We also invite developers to help us in the pursuit either by letting us know which other platforms they’d like to see ChakraCore supported on, or even by helping port it to the platform of their choice.

In addition to cross platform support, some of the other  milestones on our roadmap include submitting a pull request to Node.js mainline to enable it to run with ChakraCore, continuing to make progress on JavaScript language innovation and standards, and improving the diagnostics support for ChakraCore. This includes advancing support for ECMAScript 2015 (aka ES6) and future ECMAScript proposals and making progress on Time Travel Debugging, which enables travelling back in time and across callbacks when debugging your app’s JavaScript code.

We look forward to seeing contributions from developers across the world and are eager to see what apps and solutions are built with this technology. Of course, we’d love to know where and how you use it, so keep sending us your feedback! You can reach us on Twitter at @ChakraCore or visit ChakraCore’s GitHub repo and leave us a note by opening an issue.

It’s an exciting day for the JavaScript community and everyone who’s been involved in this effort so far. We believe that developing in the open will allow the team to collaborate even more deeply with more developers around the world, resulting in better products for everyone.

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