Source Forge Open Source Again

Apparently Source Forge has gone open source again, and even is an incubated project at Apache. The source code is in git, and the new source forge looks like it’s all written in Python instead of PHP.

Source Forge has had a pretty storied history. It started Open Source, all those years ago, then in the dot com collapse they stopped releasing source and instead tried to sell an onsite hosted solution, Source Forge Enterprise Edition. The Linux Technology Center was one of their few customers, providing an internal source forge for the rest of IBM. I had the “opportunity” to help debug some of that code for performance reasons, and discovered that a lot of Source Forge’s slowness was due to a major lack of understanding by the development team on how database indexes work. Those fixes flowed upstream.

Later, one of the key developers from Source Forge forked GForge from the last open source release. So we had Open Source “source forge” again. Then a couple years later the GForge team pulled the same stunt as Source Forge, tried to monetize, and seal off the source code.

Then git happened, and all these CVS / SVN based hosting solutions looked really quaint. A couple years later we had github, and the center of gravity of Open Source has been migrating ever since.

Source Forge’s current owner is Dice, the job search company, so the economics of keeping it Open Source are a little different. “What’s your github id?” is now a standard job interview question, so I can imagine the new Source Forge team has a pretty broad brush to just make Source Forge as good as they can.

I wish them luck.

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