Good to know the old Microsoft play book of dubious business practices is still alive & well
All that is old is new again.
Kite, a San Francisco-based development tools startup, has managed to alienate developers by quietly altering open-source projects for its benefit. Kite makes a Python programming plugin, called Kite, for various code editors to boost developer productivity through automatic code completion and other enhancements. The company …
IIRC Python has pretty good facilities for adding packages to the language already.
As for sending your IP to
"anonymous server farms in unknown jurisdictions" the cloud that gets latency and security issues for free.
No doubt something that sounds a great idea at the end of a 25mbs pipe in SF, but less attractive elsewhere.
@John Smith 19 - These are Atom editor plug-ins. It's not really anything to do with the Python language itself, except that they happen to be intended to add functionality to the Atom editor when editing Python source code. Because of this, the Python packaging system is irrelevant to this particular issue. The Atom editor supports most of the major (and a lot of the minor) programming languages.
This is an optional plug-in in a minor code editor, it's not the end of the world. As mentioned in the story, if people don't like it, someone will fork it. This is on top of the fact that some of the people running the Atom project don't seem to think it's a bad idea.
I suspect that if Kite had been open about what they were doing, it would have been accepted as a good feature.
As an aside, I have read that what Kite is doing is trying to collect large numbers of samples of "work in progress" code so that they can train their auto-completion engine. Offering this as a free service is simply their way of getting unpaid guinea pigs to work for them providing those code samples and what choices they subsequently made. I'm not sure I'd really want to volunteer for that aspect of things.
PPS - I listen to a number of Python related podcasts. I can't recall any of the interview guests saying they use the Atom editor (one of the standard questions which these sorts of podcasts ask is "what editor do you use?"). Everyone seems to use either VIM, Emacs, Sublime, or PyCharm. Occasionally it will be something else, but I can't recall Atom ever getting a mention. There's loads of IDEs and editors which have syntax and other support for Python, so if the Atom developers decide to "do evil", they could lose their user base pretty quickly.
I tried Kite and didn't find it very useful in my workflow, but I can see why some developers who are not as familiar with the standard Python libraries may need a cloud based autocomplete engine. I use PyCharm in my day job as a Python developer although I do occasionally use Atom for quickly editing text files. Atom is useful because of it's plugin architecture although personally I prefer Sublime Text.
Well to be completely accurate you should call it "anonymous server farms in unknown jurisdictions"
Because that's what they are.
Might be in the US, might not be.
For an extra dose of paranoia*:
"And there many links between you and them enroute, and you never know Who might be watching the links, or when the links might change."
*Is it still paranoia, if it's true?