Forking a 6 year old npm Github repo for maths!


As you may already now from my about section, I despise big tech for their actions.

Once again the problem is with one of them, this time Google. Allow me to explain.


Mathsteps is an “open source project” that gives step by step math solutions for everyone. Originally was behind a company called “Socratic” without any parent company…

The history of the project

Everything was going smoothly on the project before 2018…

In March 2018, Socratic was acquired by Google for an undisclosed amount. The acquisition was made public in August 2019, when the Founder and CTO (now engineering manager) Shreyans Bhansali announced that the company had joined Google.

This most of the times means bad news for foss projects.

This time it was not an exception.

Starting from August 2018, Socratic stopped updating the Mathsteps source code, user contributions stopped being taken care of; past contributions were kept, but no code continued to be developed.

The project effectively stopped in 2020.

This effectively makes the project transition from foss to source code available.

A user contributor commented:

Evykassirer: hi! I worked on this project as an intern in 2016, and since then Socratic was acquired by Google and then… I think they rewrote it and stopped using this [public] code? not sure what the state of this repo is, but I haven’t seen anyone maintain it for a while.

Which basically means that Google stopped maintaining the source code available “Mathsteps” Project.

Very unexpected. /s

What does this mean for the project or the people?

All their latest project’s ideas and future contributions were basically not going to be accepted or even taken into consideration.

And knowing Google’s past very well, I know they are project murderers. If you don’t believe me just check out the KilledByGoogle website.

Back to the present

Developers and contributors for Mathsteps in 2017 (before acquisition) were developing a web frontend for Mathsteps, so that people could use it without downloading the proprietary app that Google was developing.

What do I have to do with this then?

I want to take the open source code made from the original contributors and fix it to work today.

Evykassirer has an open repo in his profile where he published (6 years ago) the web frontend that Google deleted later for Mathsteps.

The project is built with npm, and has 6 year old dependencies that have over 20 critical npm vulnerabilities.

You will be able to use it soon (if I fix it).

Time will tell.