Here on the Underground (and occasionally in public) I mention my platonic man-love for the speed, simplicity and lack of malware offered by the Ubuntu Linux OS, typically to a lot of eye rolling and snickering.

Well, snicker at this, Windows slaves: Google uses Ubuntu Linux almost exclusively.

And they’re rich.

From ZDNet:

Why Ubuntu, rather than say Macs or Windows? Well you can run those too. Bushnell said, “Googlers [Google employees] are invited to use the tools that work for them.. If Gmail doesn’t want work for them, they can use pine [an early Unix shell character-based e-mail client] that’s fine. People aren’t required to use Ubuntu.” But, Goobuntu use is encouraged and “All our development tools are for Ubuntu.”

Googlers must ask to use Windows because “Windows is harder because it has ‘special’ security problems so it requires high-level permission before someone can use it.” In addition, “Windows tools tend to be heavy and inflexible.”

What there is though is “tens-of-thousands of Goobuntu users. This includes graphic designers, engineers, management, and sales people. It’s a very diverse community. Some, like Ken Thompson, helped create Unix and some don’t know anything about computers except how to use their application.”

Ahh, that scent you’re picking up is the Sweet Smell of External Validation. (Anyone care for a Hard Rock Cafe t-shirt?)

Back in the early aughts a former client was hired by Google and approached me about taking a job with the company (they were hiring aggressively, but I had zero interest in leaving my mountain hideaway).

Perhaps if I’d known they used Linux.

Keep writing (but you can stop with the exaggerated eye rolling), Tom Chandler.