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What is gRPC ?

  • A logical place to start when answering, “What is gRPC,” is to first talk about what the letters mean.
  • It is an acronym after all. In the introduction, we briefly covered RPC: Remote Procedure Calls. This is the programming idiom that gRPC presents to application developers.
  • So what is the “g” in “gRPC?” This technology was created by Google as an open source evolution of their internal RPC technology named Stubby, and they continue to be the stewards of the official open source project. So the “g” is widely thought to stand for “Google.” Google has tried to make it clear, however, that they want a community collaborating with and accepting contributions and input from developers outside of Google. T o that end, the “g” has never officially meant “Google.” In fact, a new meaning is assigned to the “g” for each release. In August 2016 during the 1.0 release of gRPC the acronym stood for “gRPC Remote Procedure Calls.” In the numerous minor releases since then, the “g” has gone through equally numerous redefinitions, including good, green, gambit, glamorous, and glorious.
  • This history of what the “g” stands for is documented in their main repo on Github: