I thought I had a pretty good idea what Dana Blankenhorn’s post entitled “Yahoo, another list of open source projects” was going to be about before I read it. However, I was surprised to find out that it wasn’t another article about the recent Yahoo acquisiton of our very own Zimbra (which, yes, is very cool), but it was actually about Open Source God, a consumer-facing directory of open source products.
What caught my attention most was where Dana writes that “Sourceforge does a great job serving developers, and Slashdot does fine with kibbutzers, as we do with news, but it would be shocking to me if no one turned this basic idea into a full-fledged, full-time site with its own URL.” Perhaps I’m missing the forest for the trees, but the thing that really stuck with me was the first part.
You know, the part about SourceForge. It’s a mildly embarrassing condition I’ve developed over my time with SourceForge.net: I tend to focus on what people write about us and take it somewhat literally, even if it makes me miss the point completely. Not that I found the actual point of his article uninteresting – in fact, I think he’s got a great point – but it was the first part of that sentence that got my mind moving.
Initially, I was pleased that he believes our efforts over the years have paid off for developers, but as time went by I began to wonder whether that’s how the world sees us: as a site that serves developers. What is SourceForge.net, anyway?
So stay tuned as I do a five part series on The Many Hats of SourceForge.net, about the roles SourceForge.net plays in the open source ecosystem. Each post will explore the site from the perspective of a different type of user with unique needs and expectations. You’ll love it because it’s nutritious and delicious.
See you then.
[ Continue reading: Part one: Catalyst ]