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Author Topic: Looking for Open Source... So...  (Read 2667 times)

Renegade

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Looking for Open Source... So...
« on: September 16, 2007, 05:33:59 AM »
Of course I want to know what platform the software runs on. However, far too often you need to download the code (sometimes through CSV or some other hellish interface) to find out what it's written in and if you can use it.

Now I'm trying to figure out why this is. Why would you post OS software, but neglect to mention what the language and platform is?

Either that or I'm completely blind. Has anyone else run into this?  :huh:

Then again, there are projects that wear the platform and language on their sleeve much like they are just trying to evangelize the platform/language.

Any middle ground?  :'(

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Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

PhilB66

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Re: Looking for Open Source... So...
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2007, 06:52:04 AM »

How about Open Source Alternatives? Does it make your cut?

Eóin

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Re: Looking for Open Source... So...
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2007, 06:54:42 AM »
I'm not sure it's fair to describe CVS and it's kin as a 'hellish interface', they are not really meant to be tools for non-developers. And even with that lot of OS projects do offer a web based way of browsing the source code for the curious.

Other than that though I too find the lack of details frustrating for some projects. For example I generally stay away from Java apps so hate when I download a cool sounding opensource program to find it needs Java. I have similar irrational dislike of programs that are written in python.

I'm not sure that is what you are getting at though? Are you speaking from an end-user view wanting to know if the program will run on your pc or from a developers stand point wanting to know if there is code in there you may be able to reuse?

mouser

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Re: Looking for Open Source... So...
« Reply #3 on: September 16, 2007, 09:04:49 AM »
i'm not sure this is on topic, but personally i find cvs and even svn (which is a lot better) inexcusably confusing to log into and checkout new repositories.

f0dder

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Re: Looking for Open Source... So...
« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2007, 12:40:07 PM »
subversion :-*

...but you shouldn't need to grab the latest bleeding-edge nightly build with cvs/svn just to get an app. Fortunately, most of the time you don't, except if you want bleeding-edge.

Most of the opensource stuff I use do have mention of language/platform at least somewhere in the docs, although not everybody puts it up on the front page :)
- carpe noctem

Edvard

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Re: Looking for Open Source... So...
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2007, 01:45:59 PM »
I have a similar (perhaps unreasonable...) aversion to java and .net applications, none such for python. Perl I can't understand anyways, so :shrug:

My biggest gripe with opensource applications is when an app is really cool, but lacks feature X, which is a deal-killer. Turns out feature X:
1- was present (although implemented "experimentally") in version W, which lacks features G, M, T and S which are also deal-killers.
2- was left out of the stable release because the "experimental implementation" was unstable. Go figure.
3- has been re-written with stable code, has been in SVN for six months now, you're free to download and compile IF you can navigate SVN, and IF you can successfully compile it, and IF the REST of the app is stable enough for production use (the catch-all caveat from hell...)
AND:1- the next stable release of the version in question hangs on which of the two devs can get time off from work/school/life to tie up the loose parts and just release the damn thing
2- the whole UI code is being re-written for version Z which they are both hard at work on...
 >:(
Of course it's illegal to fault the devs because they aren't getting paid, so I won't mention the app I have in mind for fear they will abandon the project and leave it in 'other' hands which will further delay release, ad nauseum.

I hate to say such things as a dedicated Linux user, but it's true, all too true.

Renegade

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Re: Looking for Open Source... So...
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2007, 06:32:02 PM »
I'm not sure it's fair to describe CVS and it's kin as a 'hellish interface', they are not really meant to be tools for non-developers. And even with that lot of OS projects do offer a web based way of browsing the source code for the curious.

Other than that though I too find the lack of details frustrating for some projects. For example I generally stay away from Java apps so hate when I download a cool sounding opensource program to find it needs Java. I have similar irrational dislike of programs that are written in python.

I'm not sure that is what you are getting at though? Are you speaking from an end-user view wanting to know if the program will run on your pc or from a developers stand point wanting to know if there is code in there you may be able to reuse?

The few times that I've tried CVS/SVN I just couldn't get things to work. I'd wasted far too much time and just abandoned the idea.

But I'm usually looking as a developer. Not always for code reuse, but often just to get my hands dirty and learn a bit or to customize the app for myself. When I can't find out what language it's written in, that's a real pain. I don't code in Python, so I wouldn't download that. I don't run LAMP servers, so I'm not interested in those kinds of server apps except to peek inside at a couple interesting things.

Bascially, I just wish that a lot of projects would have a system requirements page or section. It would really help in deciding if spending more time there finding out if the product is right for what I need.

Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker