News & Announcements
Doubling down on the ecosystem: open source and integrations
Why do you write code? Is it because you are paid for it? To build something for yourself? To learn something? To be part of a community? Perhaps all of these reasons! I know that when I started coding it was because I liked learning and figuring out how to do something. I then built things for myself to try out new ideas, and often just to see if I could. Later I made it my career, so I also got paid for it.
Open source became an entry into more learning for me. Open source also enabled me to have a free operating system on my self-built PCs when I was studying. As I became more of a user, I wanted to give back. Over the years I’ve contributed to various open source projects, but only when I had the time and energy to do so. And therein lies one of the key problems: how can open source be sustainable when there are always competing demands of time or investment?
At Netlify, we recognize the importance of open source for enabling web developers and advancing what’s possible on the web, and we are working to address this. That’s why I joined in January to help build out an engineering group focused on ecosystem integrations and open source upstream contributions. We have an amazing team of folks, including Matt Kane and Tiffany Le-Nguyen, who have been building integrations and contributing to frameworks like Next.js, Nuxt, Gatsby and Svelte. And now we’re excited to have Zach Leatherman move into engineering to work full-time on 11ty 🚀 This is just the start of a group that will be focused on contributing upstream and to help and support such projects.
You might, quite fairly, ask why we are taking this approach with open source. So let me share more. Why would we want to help open source be viable? Won’t that open us up to competitors getting an advantage? Possibly yes, especially in the short term. But longer term we hope this will make things better for everyone. We want the best developer experience for the web and we know it takes a village. Netlify will also benefit from this - we just happen to want to bring everyone else along with us!
We want to foster innovation and collaboration across the Jamstack ecosystem. We pride ourselves on being an agnostic platform and supporting as many frameworks and integrations as possible. We also recognise that we don’t know it all. There is so much we can learn from the community in return for sharing what we’ve learned and built. For those who don’t know, Netlify also already supports open source projects with free tiers for collaboration and running project (and documentation) websites. For more on this see our open source policy.
We are always striving to improve what can be achieved on our platform, and for those achievements to be a great developer experience. Another key part of the Ecosystem is ensuring that frameworks have first class support on Netlify. Things should just work! We’ve made important progress here in the last year and already have more going on behind the scenes, and we’d love for you to join us on this journey.