Android Dev Blog · It’s been around since November 2007, way before I’d ever heard of Android. In recent times it’s been used somewhat like a press-release channel; each of the pieces heavily group-edited into just-the-facts mode. Perfectly OK (if a bit tedious) when that’s the kind of channel you want.
It seemed obvious to me that there was scope for a real bloggy kind of blog, since there are a ton of interesting stories inside Android crying to be told. So I said that a few times and I suspect irritated a few people, and the upshot was I got the whole thing dropped into my lap.
Let me drive a stake in the ground: If you want to know the actual technical substance of what’s being built here, or to read inside-Android stories, that blog is the place to come, or rather subscribe to if you really care.
Blogging at Google · It’s hard, way harder than I’d realized. There’s this thing in the company culture where everyone is very free with information, internally, and expected to be very close-mouthed, externally. Within a few days of arriving, my brain was bulging with more Really Big Secrets than I’d picked up in years at Sun.
In fact, I now know how much storage we’re dedicating to support... hold on, even mentioning what it’s being used for would probably get my ass appropriately fired. And so on. There are a million stories around here and a person like me who can’t not write is dying to tell them; but it’s really hard to keep track of which ones are fair game.
To make matters worse, Google is interesting. Since I’ve come to work here, my blog readership and Twitter follower-count have both ballooned, and I’ve noticed that more or less anything we say, whether or not I think it matters, is news.
On top of which there are many out there who are kind of scared and nervous about Google, for a variety of reasons some of which are perfectly reasonable. And there are those, including some who write for large audiences, looking to pounce with glee on any whiff of evil or hypocrisy. Fair enough, I suppose, since Google presents what we in the trade call a Large Attack Surface.
Which means that Google in general and the Android project in particular are careful, verging on paranoid, about what gets said in public.
Since I’ve been here, I’ve argued repeatedly that there are a lot of people who would like to like us, and that there are lot of stories here that would be good to tell; that the rewards of open-ness greatly exceed the risks. There are people here, including some very important ones, who are unconvinced. But they’re still giving this a chance. Let’s hope I’m right.