Six minute "Why git?"

When you successfully deploy a useful technology, you will see one of two things happen:

  • incremental (and possibly large) improvements to how things get done
  • a transformation to new ways of doing things that were unimaginable before

Distributed version control, such as git, is clearly in the latter category. I could make all sorts of detailed arguments about why this is true. (And in fact, I will be speaking about git as often as Jay will let me on the NFJS tour this year.)

But talk is cheap. Just watch this visualization of the Rails commit history. It is only six minutes long, so take the time to watch it full-screen, start to finish, with audio. Rails switched from svn to git in April 2008, just past the five minute mark in the video.

If you run a significant open source project that is not on a distributed SCM, it is a clear warning sign that you are a dinosaur. And this economy may be your meteor.