I was waiting for Luca to start talking about it publicly before I said something, so now that he’s put public word out that he’s working with us at AdMob I get my chance to talk about it a little as well. First I would like to just get this one thing out of the way: W00T!!
Like Luca said in his note, a big part of what we’re doing is just funding a necessary piece of infrastructure that lots of mobile publishers use. It’s in our best interest. Whenever I talk to people at the MoMo events, and frequently when I talk to publishers at AdMob, they’re using WURFL to do their device detection. In many cases, if it weren’t for WURFL they would have to seriously degrade the functionality of their site or stop running it completely. And we ourselves use WURFL at AdMob for parts of our targeting. Sometimes it’s hard to see why a company would fund an open source project. This is one of those cases where everything is aligned however. WURFL directly makes my life easier, and indirectly makes my life easier by making publishers lives easier. Simple.
But also it’s because Luca has been around the block quite a few times when it comes to working on the mobile web. He has a bunch of knowledge kicking around related not just to current practice, but all the legacy that goes into what has become current practice. So we get to pick his brain when we need to understand problems that seem to be environment specific. And while he was out here visiting last I got him to sign my copy of Professional WAP for me, how’s that for geek cred? We’re proud to be supporting Luca and the WURFL project, and I’m personally excited to have him as part of the team.