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Open Source Software

Ask Slashdot: Where Do You Get (or Share) News About Open Source Projects? 85

Posted by timothy
from the just-start-typing-random-ips dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Now that freshmeat.net / freecode.com doesn't accept any updates, I wonder how the Slashdot crowd gets news about new projects, and even new versions of existing projects. For project managers, where could you announce new versions of your project, so that it can reach not just those who already know the project. Freshmeat / Freecode had all the tools to explore and discover projects, see screenshots (a mandatory feature for any software project, even with only a console interface or no interface at all) and go to the homepage of the project. I subscribed years ago to the RSS feed and sometimes found interesting projects this way. You could replace these tools by subscribing to newsletters or feeds from the projects you follow, but that doesn't cover the discovery part." And do any of the major development / hosting platforms for Free / Open Source projects (GitHub, Launchpad, or Slashdot sister-site SourceForge) have tools you find especially useful for skimming projects of interest?
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Ask Slashdot: Where Do You Get (or Share) News About Open Source Projects?

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  • Google? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    What's wrong with just googling for stuff

    • Re:Google? (Score:4, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 26, 2014 @06:56PM (#47540409)
      I get all my news and updates from slashdot. It's the only source anyone needs.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        What you're saying is true these days. Slashdot is the best source of computing news around, even with the stupid beta site, the bad editors, and the sometimes stupid moderation.

        I used to get my software and programming and open source news from some subreddits and Y Combinator's Hacker News, but I can no longer stand going there. Things have really gone downhill at both places. There's just something totalitarian about their up/down voting. That, and a lot of the people there now are kind of shitbags (a.k.

        • Re:Google? (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 26, 2014 @09:57PM (#47540973)

          Yeah, but Slashdot has its own ideologies:

          - Linux and Apple good, Microsoft bad
          - copyright assertion bad, piracy good (since digital stuff was meant to be free). Big exception: GPL violations must be vigorously prosecuted
          - patents are bad (this one I mostly agree with)
          - privacy violation by the government for security is totalitarian and alarming, similar techniques by Internet companies is a necessary evil (as a business model)
          - H1-Bs and offshoring of US/Western European jobs to developing companies bad
          - technologies or companies promising to make programming and/or system administration dramatically cheaper and easier = quackery
          etc

          These biases are institutionalized and reflected on a daily basis in choices of stories, summaries, and (especially) moderation, which controls which posts will be read by most readers. If you happen to be on the majority side of these biases, you might not notice. But I find it annoying that thoughtful posts can be modded 0 so that they're well hidden while mindless rants parroting the view of the majority (often with F words that are apparently taken as evidence of passion) are modded up to +5.

          • by Anonymous Coward

            I can't imagine why anybody who so completely misinterprets Slashdot, its postings and its audience would spend time here posting such a remarkably inaccurate account. Clearly you're better than us. Why are you wasting your life here?

          • Yeah, but Slashdot has its own ideologies:

            - Linux and Apple good, Microsoft bad
            - copyright assertion bad, piracy good (since digital stuff was meant to be free). Big exception: GPL violations must be vigorously prosecuted
            - patents are bad (this one I mostly agree with)
            - privacy violation by the government for security is totalitarian and alarming, similar techniques by Internet companies is a necessary evil (as a business model)
            - H1-Bs and offshoring of US/Western European jobs to developing companies bad
            - technologies or companies promising to make programming and/or system administration dramatically cheaper and easier = quackery
            etc

            Heh! I might as well add some:

            - IPv6 is the best thing since sliced bread
            - NAT is always terrible and one must run public IP addresses and a real firewall instead
            - The Ribbon widget is awful
            - Ubuntu Unity is crap
            - Daylight saving time is a bad idea
            - Internet Explorer is a buggy and non-standards-compliant web browser
            - Everything must be open source and run the Linux kernel

            • by mitzampt (2002856)
              Some are common personal preferences that got accepted within submissions. Don't remember that much about NAT, though...
      • by Anonymous Coward
        Slashdot is full to the brim with Social Media Marketing types who'll make sure any Open Source project news (or anything else that'll compete with their proprietary sponsors) is buried in negativity and FUD. It's impossible to discuss the real merits of any news for nerds that actually matters here any more.

        Slashdot's not alone in that, of course. Social media is too big and too cheap a way of getting eyeballs to be ignored, especially with viral and astroturfing techniques. Reddit's /r/technology is bas

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by intermelt (196274)

      What's wrong with just googling for stuff

      Google only helps if you know what you want. Google doesn't tell you what you want that you didn't know existed. Freshmeat / Freecode was great for this. I always found things I didn't know I needed.

    • Re:Google? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by stephanruby (542433) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @08:16PM (#47540647)

      What's wrong with just googling for stuff

      Googling usually works for me, but I browse the results with the image tab. This way, I only take a look at open source projects with actual screenshots.

      In any case, the original question seems to be asked from the point of view of a marketer. A developer will often know where to advertise his open source project for the type of community he's catering for. That's the key. Know your community of users. Know where they hang out and what they read. And once you have a couple of users that recommend your open source project (assuming they like it), then your project will start to gain page rank in Google, and other indexes.

      Just to give you a personal example. As an Android developer, I often hear of relevant open source Android projects I can use on DevAppsDirect [google.com], Android-related meetups, StackOverflow questions, and through Google searches. And obviously, if I was a different kind of developer, or if I was a different kind of project manager with a different kind of community/user focus, my sources could be very different.

    • Re:Google? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by westlake (615356) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @09:00PM (#47540825)

      What's wrong with just googling for stuff

      Time.

      Ideally, what you want is a list of projects which are simply and accurately described, not dormant or defunct, and generally regarded as useful or promising in their present state.

    • Re:Google? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by kallen3 (171792) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @10:34PM (#47541047)

      As someone pointed out you have to have some idea of the project you are looking for. I have found many software projects on Freshmeat/Freecode just by going there 3 or 4 times a week. Sometimes there will be things listed that I had not given any thought to and then I see it listed there found it intriguing went to the web page and checked it out. Later on I would go back and download it because I would recall months later when the need arised it was there. Trying do that with google, what would be the search string, "New software"? Especially for us not searching for anything specific and just wanted to find new open source software in general.

    • by asmkm22 (1902712)
      Agreed. Since the vast majority of open source projects are designed to be free alternatives to paid products, my source of "news" usually comes in the form of "open source sharepoint" or "open source office" type searches. The main problem with this is that, like most things in the open-source world, tons of projects exist without any updates for years. So while googling can offer a wide range of results, I usually have to cross-reference them with Wikipedia since they seem to do a good job of showing c
  • by Rinikusu (28164) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @06:58PM (#47540425)

    Honestly, /. still gives me some leads on occasion. hacker news, reddit.com/r/, and then just googling for shit.

    • by TeknoHog (164938)
      The Bitcoin 0.3.0 release article on Slashdot in July 2010 changed my life. For example, by getting me into FPGA and GPU hacking.
  • The Place to B...SD (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    For news about the BSD family of open source operating systems, there is a weekly video podcast, http://www.bsdnow.tv

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Yeah, too bad they only care about operating systems to include other BSD licensed software. If it did include other software the audience might grow beyond the select sysadmins that want to install a bunch of different BSD distributions.

  • Linux sites I visit (Score:5, Informative)

    by DoofusOfDeath (636671) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @07:35PM (#47540527)

    linux.softpedia.com [softpedia.com]

    osnews.com [osnews.com]

    Linux Today [linuxtoday.com]

    Linux Weekly News [lwn.net]

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Warning: Visiting some of these terrorist-oriented sites [linuxjournal.com] may put you on some lists [eweek.com].

    • by Teancum (67324)

      While this is good, not all open software is restricted to just Linux or Linux-based software.

      • True though that may be, any FOSS project that doesn't support Linux is useless for the vast majority. If you use Windows then you are, by definition, not interested in FOSS, regardless of the contemporry M$ spin. There are many good FOSS projects with Windows ports, but if you want to use Windows and you don't want them you are basically screwed since FOSS relies on a community of competent developers, and by definition, "Windows only" developers that are competent are virtually non-existent.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    For those of us still refusing to join modern networks, IRC is vibrant as ever.

    • by westlake (615356)

      For those of us still refusing to join modern networks, IRC is vibrant as ever.

      would it kill the geek to bring the IRC and USENET client into the 21st century?

      • There are plenty of clients for both ... google is your friend.

        And I don't get what is wrong with a 20th century client anyway.

        • IRC should be steamrolled and a better system brought to replace it.

          - It does not come with encryption
          - Netsplits are handled crudely
          - A lot of functionality (such as nickname registration or channel ownership) is not in the spec and is handled by hacky bots or modified servers
          - It unnecessarily exposes the network layer to the user
          - It can be confusing and overly technical to a newbie

          • There are already better systems, since decades.
            But people don't adopt them ... not IRCs fault.

            E.g. Jabber ... most online games I play, people use Jabber.

      • some guy was gushing about irccloud.

        I don't really have that muchtrouble keeping track of IRC on irssi on my 24x7 server though. That makes me a dinosaur I guess.

    • by FyRE666 (263011)

      I used to be a regular user of Freenode, but it's a total cesspool of meglomaniacs who have somehow managed to crawl up someone's ass to get op status, and their toadies. Here's how the average conversation goes in most of the old channels I used to frequent:

      A: Can any one help me with XXX?
      Twat1: Why do you want to do that?
      A: {explains}
      Twat2: That's stupid
      Twat1: Yeah, who told you to do that
      A: Well, I'm just looking for help to do XXX
      Twat1: Nobody does that, so why are you asking?
      Twat2: Well said Twat1
      A has

  • by Fnord666 (889225) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @07:50PM (#47540575) Journal
    Hey Timothy, have you ever noticed that submenu over on the left of the front page? You know, the one that lists the various sections that you can posts stories to? Ever notice that there is one called "Ask Slashdot", which just happens to match up exactly with the premise of this story, not to mention the title. Why don't you do all of us who filter by section a favor and try posting "Ask Slashdot" stories to the "Ask Slashdot" section every once in a while?
    Thanks
  • www.openhub.net (Score:4, Informative)

    by vladmihaisima (772832) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @07:52PM (#47540583)
    This is the former ohloh.net, can be very useful also to understand how active a project is and how did it evolve.
  • In the old days here, freshmeat and sourceforge, but not post-dice. Not really seeing much point in any of them now.

  • I miss freshmeat/freecode for showing the (lat/new)est additions & up(grad/dat)es on its home page without an account. :(

  • I subscribe to the Yahoo Group for the software I use (JMRI).

    For the weird and wonderful stuff, right here baby!

  • by physicsphairy (720718) on Saturday July 26, 2014 @09:56PM (#47540969) Homepage

    Perhaps it's now hidden somewhere, but I no longer see the search function, which I wouldn't mind having even for a static archive. My typical first operation in looking for a peace of software was to go to freshmeat, do a search, and sort by popularity/vitality.

    Variety in open source is wonderful, but unless I have very specific requirements, I often just want to install one of the 'community approved best' options and not worry about deciphering reviews and forum posts to find out what is featured, active, and stable. In my experience, freshmeat was always the best place for that.

    sf.net and the ubuntu software center do have some decent rankings. I recently used the later to preload Ubuntu for a friend with software I thought would showcase what opensource can do for him.

    What would be awfully nice, however, would be some sort of cross-platform aggregation of statistics which includes downloads from package managers.

  • There's a subreddit for cool github projects. http://www.reddit.com/r/coolgi... [reddit.com]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 26, 2014 @11:41PM (#47541293)

    http://freshcode.club

    From their about page:
    "freshcode.club is a reimplementation of FreshMeat/FreeCode, which shut down in June 2014. It's intended to become a community-driven website again.
    It's initially also a lookalike. Yet it's planned to differentiate the feature set and provide different frontends with shared datasets. A few notable design differences are:
            No forced user accounts, just OpenID logins.
            All content is licensed under CC-BY-SA to prevent another data loss situation.
            JSON-based database exchange feeds and defining releases.json.
            Automated release updates from VCS systems and project websites.
            No commercial ads, no tracking cookies.
    The project name freshcode.club is an amalgamation of freshmeat and freecode. Both domains have been reserved as placeholders for partner projects or varied frontends. With the new .club TLD signalising a more community-inclusive direction."

  • /. debian.org/news, and my local Linux Users Group (LUG)

  • by Anonymous Coward

    On http://www.freshports.org/

  • various (Score:4, Informative)

    by taikedz (2782065) on Sunday July 27, 2014 @03:40AM (#47541701) Homepage Journal

    From a user's perspective, three sources: the Linux Action Show podcast highlghts fun/useful items once a week.

    Then there's tuxmachines.org which talks about.... well pretty much anything, you'll have to sift through the deluge...

    Then just following what's generally popular, and using alternativeto.net to find open source counterparts...

  • so I can use http://www.freshports.org/ [freshports.org]
    I have subscriptions for the stuff that I use, build, or that I'm generally interested in (I run my on own build-server and build about 1200 packages these days) and I get an email every evening (local time) that lists all the updates to these projects.
    It will sometimes take a longer time for a port to be updated (for various reasons) - but it works well enough.
    In these cases, other news-portals often carry the news of a new release (like it's the case for PHP).
    In

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