Two years ago, as Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was preparing to acquire LinkedIn for $26.2 billion, he started thinking about what it would take to acquire open-source code repository GitHub. But Nat Friedman, CEO of Xamarin, another open-source startup Microsoft had just acquired, told Mr. Nadella that Microsoft hadn’t yet won enough trust from open-source developers, according to this report from Forbes.
This anecdote shows how far Microsoft has come in building relationships with open-source developers. Microsoft acquired GitHub earlier this year for $7.5 billion, and Mr. Friedman is now CEO of GitHub. What’s ironic is that open-source software, which Microsoft once saw as an existential threat to the software industry, is now widely seen as the most important part of its future.