We’re excited to announce that Zed is now an open source project. The code for Zed itself is available under a copyleft license to ensure any improvements will benefit the entire community (GPL for the editor, AGPL for server-side components). GPUI, the UI framework that powers Zed, is distributed under the Apache 2 license, so that you can use it to build high-performance desktop applications and distribute them under any license you choose.

You can find all of the code on GitHub.

Why are we doing this? Most importantly, we believe that making Zed open source will make it the best product. Our mission is to build the world’s most advanced code editor and get it into the hands of millions of developers. There’s a ton of surface area on that problem, and we’ll need all the help we can get. Considering that all of Zed’s users are programmers, it makes the most sense sense to open Zed to the maximum pool of talent.

On a more selfish level, we also think going open source will be a lot more fun. One of our favorite aspects of software is connecting with people. We’re not only proud of what we’ve built, but also of how we’ve built it. We want to share Zed’s inner beauty with all of you, and we’re confident we’ll learn a lot from you in the process to make it even better.

Introducing Fireside Hacks
Motivated by our desire to connect with you all on a human level, we’re launching a new Zed feature called Zed Channels, which will make it easy for developers anywhere in the world to write code together in real time just by sharing a link.

Starting tomorrow, we’ll be using Channels to run a new program called Fireside Hacks, in which we’ll be working on Zed live in a public channel, together with whoever shows up. We’ll be experimenting with different formats, but we’re hoping these regular sessions give us all an opportunity to get to know each other better, beyond what’s possible in a static pull request. Come join the experiment to ask questions, make suggestions, and code with us in real time. We’re looking forward to meeting you!

Wait… Doesn’t Cash Rule Everything Around Me?
We strongly believe that the best way to build and maintain the world’s best editor is by associating it with a sustainable business model. It’s the only way we can continue to invest in a full-time team to spearhead development. Some may wonder whether making Zed open source undermines this objective. We’ve thought about this a lot, and we don’t think that openness is at odds with commercial success.

Rather than selling you a proprietary editor, we’d much prefer to sell you services that seamlessly integrate with your editor to make you and your team more productive. Zed Channels is one example of such a service. It’s free for anyone today, but we intend to begin charging for private use after a beta period of experimentation. Providing server-side compute to power AI features is another monetization scheme we’re seeing getting t
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