Open Source is one of the most powerful ideas of our generation

The recent GitHub acquisition has put “open source” into the spotlight. That’s pretty cool and pretty weird when you think about it. Why should anyone care about the software they use on a daily basis, and what’s hidden inside the code?

I work for a company called Automattic that was created by one of the co-founders of the WordPress Project — and you can guess what their name might be based on the company name. Hint? The word “automatic” isn’t usually spelled with two-Ts.

Automattic Mullenweg firmly believes that open source is an important idea — and that’s why the Automattic Creed has it built-in to all of our employee values:

“I will never stop learning. I won’t just work on things that are assigned to me. I know there’s no such thing as a status quo. I will build our business sustainably through passionate and loyal customers. I will never pass up an opportunity to help out a colleague, and I’ll remember the days before I knew everything. I am more motivated by impact than money, and I know that Open Source is one of the most powerful ideas of our generation. I will communicate as much as possible, because it’s the oxygen of a distributed company. I am in a marathon, not a sprint, and no matter how far away the goal is, the only way to get there is by putting one foot in front of another every day. Given time, there is no problem that’s insurmountable.”

Pretty cool, huh? It’s time to wonder, “What’s inside the code of the things we’re consuming on a daily basis?” with the same kind of worry and concern we’ve known to ask these days about the things we eat and put inside our body all the time. We’re putting things into our mind all the time via the computer these days. Should we ask, “What’s inside?” The simpler answer is, “Heck yeah!”

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