NPR (National Public Radio) has just issued a press release announcing that they have made the source code for their Android application public. For those who have never heard of public radio (shame on you), it is a member supported radio service providing (usually) unslanted news coverage, classical music, and entertaining programs such as the Car Talk and This American Life. Google it. You won’t look back.
With the release of the application’s source code, NPR is hoping Android community programmers, in conjunction with Google developer Michael Frederick, will contribute cool new code that will make this app better. Not a programmer? NPR still wants to hear from you, as they believe user ideas are key to building innovative new functionalities.
So, all you programmers interested in helping create a truly wonderful public radio application as well as you Android users who simply want to share a brilliant idea you have, Tweet at NPR’s Android Twitter account (@nprandroid) for more details. Full text of the press release can be found below.Show Press Release
It’s almost organic.
Since its bazaar beginning, NPR’s Android app has been an experiment, allowing NPR to test the waters of collaborating with the open source community.
We didn’t know how fast the Android platform would grow or what kind of an impact it would make. The last six months show us Android’s incredible trajectory and that our audience gravitates toward that momentum. Since the app’s release in December, we’ve seen astounding growth, and now over 100,000 people use this new platform each month.
In the spirit of the Android operating system, we’ve decided to make the code for NPR’s app public. We believe this matches perfectly with NPR’s public service mission. Public media implies our audiences have a stake in our product, and open source projects are a means to better connect to our stakeholders.
We want to connect with you.
If you are a programmer, you know what this is all about. If you find yourself spending your free time hacking up cool things just because it is your passion, then put your energy to a noble cause. Spend some time poking around our app. Not only are you helping NPR and your local member station, but you will get a chance to work with a developer at Google, Michael Frederick. Michael has been responsible for the majority of work in building the NPR Android app and is ready to engage with anyone contributing code to the project. Thanks to Michael’s generosity this project is off to strong start. But we don’t want it to stop there.
If you don’t spend your free time digging through the guts of your latest attempt at artificial intelligence, you can still be a part of this community, because no matter who you are, you can still have good ideas.
We need to hear from you. If you love NPR and believe in what public media stands for, join us. The more the better. Come talk to us on Twitter @nprandroid or wherever you engage with NPR.