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The Software Internet Database 67

Larry points out an interesting project called The Software Internet Database, the goal of which "is to compile the largest database of software titles and credits on the Internet. This includes all types of software such as operating systems, security, financial, mapping, browsers, video editing, games, word processing, and more. They have made a good start but still need more titles. Please take some time to submit missing titles so that they may compile the database faster." It would be informative to have a subway-map overhead view to know which of these are still available from their makers,have been folded into other products, or are now abandonware.
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The Software Internet Database

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  • good luck (Score:4, Informative)

    by NynexNinja ( 379583 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:36PM (#15651119)
    sourceforge.net, freshmeat.net, tinyapps.org, packetstormsecurity.org, etc, etc have been around for a number of years and do this task well. I checked out that site, and it looks like they are attempting to use a vanilla CMS for the task of managing the titles... You really need some custom software to do it right (check freshmeat.net for an example of a good custom interface).
    • Re:good luck (Score:4, Informative)

      by tcopeland ( 32225 ) * <tom@NosPam.thomasleecopeland.com> on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:41PM (#15651160) Homepage
      > sourceforge.net, freshmeat.net, tinyapps.org, packetstormsecurity.org

      Yup, and rubyforge [rubyforge.org] and LuaForge [luaforge.net] as well. One hard part is sorting out duplicates... getting a list of the actual projects shouldn't be too hard since most project aggregation sites have RSS feeds with that info [rubyforge.org].
    • Re:good luck (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      sourceforge.net, freshmeat.net, tinyapps.org, packetstormsecurity.org, etc, etc have been around for a number of years and do this task well.

      I think you are missing the point. This site intends to have all software and its current status. Sourceforge.net and freshmeat.net generally only have OSS software. Tinyapps.org has hardly anything and what they do have only focus's on software with a small footprint. Packetstorm is really only security software.

      What I think that the authors of this site envision is
      • Re:good luck (Score:3, Informative)

        by drinkypoo ( 153816 )
        Sourceforge.net and freshmeat.net generally only have OSS software.

        Actually, I've found that the value of freshmeat.net has been diluted, since they include non-OSS software. Then again, for all I know I can filter, and I've just been too lazy to do so.

        • If you sign up for an account, then you have "Automatic Filters" that are applied to each search for you. One of them is license I believe.
      • the Wikipedia entry for Software Names.
  • by bofh69 ( 22591 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:37PM (#15651121)
    To find out how many degrees of separation I am from software written by Kevin Bacon?
    • Kevin Bacon was in Where the Truth Lies (2005) with Anna Silk Anna Silk was in Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002) with Matt Damon Matt Damon was in The Bourne Supremacy (2004) with Karl Urban Karl Urban was in Doom (2005) which you played when you were 13.
  • by jhines ( 82154 ) <john@jhines.org> on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:37PM (#15651122) Homepage
    Makes picking a name for a new project much easier, if you have the names of what exists in what genre.
    • You can never be sure their database is complete. I mean come on, this is 2006. It's safer to do a Google search. I did that when I started my project. There was 0 results on Google for the keyword, so I was pretty sure it was a unique and original name. (Now, 3 years after the project launched, there are 400,000 results for the word ;)
  • by The MAZZTer ( 911996 ) <<megazzt> <at> <gmail.com>> on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:38PM (#15651131) Homepage

    It only has somewhere between 100-200 titles... closer to 100. I can't even tell how many exactly, because their search tool is broken (can't go beyond the first page).

    Search for an empty string (like I did) and it dumps the entire list.

    Also their idea of web design leaves much to be desired. Who the hell stuck that black and gray logo on a white and off-white page? If they changed one to match the other it would look much better.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:41PM (#15651159)
      Or, you could have clicked the "Metrics" link to see..
      As of: 7/3/2006 1:35:17 PM
      Total titles: 83
      Total versions: 107
      Total organizations: 122
      Total names: 81
      Total credits: 90
      • Here are the titles (from "View All" on their site)...
        (P.S. I could've come up with a list larger than this on my lunch break)

        Activision AIM 5.9 Triton 1.0.4 American Chopper Version 2: Full Throttle XBOX Auto Control Beyond TV 4 CuteFTP 7 Home 7 Professional Digital Diary 3.3 Doom 3 Resurrection of Evil XBOX Doom III PC Doom III: Resurrection of Evil Expansion PC Fantastic Four PC XBOX FileZilla 2.2.22 Final Fantasy VIII ItsDeductible 7.0 JBoss Application Server 4.0 Kong: King of Atlantis GameBoy Adva
  • Good Idea (Score:4, Insightful)

    by denverradiosucks ( 653647 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:39PM (#15651138) Homepage
    This seems like a good concept. The search feature on sourceforge and other software sites always seems a little dated. Searching for video editing software brings every file with the words "video" and "editing". Not really very helpful. For example, It took quite some time to find some OCR software on there two weeks ago. Sorting and arranging these programs by type should streamline the process.
  • Not very complete (Score:3, Interesting)

    by trance9 ( 10504 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:39PM (#15651144) Homepage Journal

    I tried a few searches for projects I've worked on. No matches. Then I tried some searches for more popular software packages.. No matches for things like "Linux" or "GCC". What's this doing on slashdot? Nice idea but it's got a way to go.
    • Yeah I agree, the concept is fine but the database still has a long way to go, and it looks Windows-centric, the very first submitted app is Norton AV:
      http://www.softwareidb.com/?q=sidb/title/1 [softwareidb.com] (Notice the title ID in the URL) (2nd is Windows [softwareidb.com]), and the first submitted credit is Bill Gates: http://www.softwareidb.com/?q=sidb/name/1 [softwareidb.com].

      Oh, and Bill Gate's page could use a pic, why not submit one [monkeymethods.org]? ;)
      • Posting on slashdot when it is big enough to encompass most searches slashdotters might throw at is one perspective. Another is a big chunk of the information you need in order to populate your free DB is possessed by slashdotters and you are posting to get their contributions. I'd suspect it's probably the latter that got this posted.
  • Questions... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Danse ( 1026 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:41PM (#15651158)

    Is there supposed to be some kind of incentive for us to contribute to this effort? Will the info always be freely available? How can we be sure of that? What are they planning to do with the info? What is the business? Just selling ads? How do we know this isn't another Gracenote stunt? Why is this even posted here with so little info?

    • Out of all of the comments on this article, I believe that this one is the most telling.

      After a bunch of people do all of this work -- who will benefit? Who will get money? Will the information be accesible under a free license and in an open file format in 5 years?

      Wikipedia's template for software entries may not be as robust as this site's design, and on Wikipedia even legitimate articles about unique topics seem to be deleted left and right, but for my money that still seems like a better place to do thi
  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:45PM (#15651182)
    Um...pretty crappy "database". Anyone can submit a company? Then, when you submit a "title", you don't specify the company?

    Also, when you submit these things, there is no indication of what is done with the information or when it might be posted.

    Later, when you try to add a version, the drop-downs contain ALL companies and ALL versions. This is a recipe for future disaster - the author should probably have tried larger data sets when planning his interface.
  • Hmm, this would be a lot more useful if it merged the existing info from other sites such as mobygames.com. Now we have to start all over again.

    So far this looks like the description of most SourceForge projects (see subject)...

    (apologies to SourceForge - not trolling, honest!)
  • by vidarlo ( 134906 ) <vidarlo@bitsex.net> on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:46PM (#15651189) Homepage

    ...or it will be spamridden. We have tucows, which was useable, but only had windows software. We have freshmeat, which is useable, but mostly free software. We have sourceforge, which hosts free software. Point is, all those software catalogs is either narrow in scope, requires registration from the individual software project, is spam ridden, or disappears.

    And how would you rate programs? Ensure that links works? Whom should you credit for the programs? What if the homepage moves? Sounds like a lot of if's without good answers.

    And if they are submission-based, how many will bother? How many dupes will there be? Is MS Office 2003 seperate program from MS Office 2004 for MAC? Is Firefox and mozilla discrete apps? What about the different parts of the KDE suite?

  • by Malfourmed ( 633699 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:47PM (#15651192) Homepage
    The idea is a good one (though I wouldn't be surprised if there were similar projects out there already) but IMO the site is some way from having made even "a good start".

    For instance there are only 83 titles in the database. And while this deficiency can be addressed by people contributing data there are design choices which I find puzzling. For instance, How is Bill Gates' height [softwareidb.com] relevant to the purpose of the project? And would it not be an idea to associate names with titles via a "role", rather than just a credit? Ie, I'd be interested to know of the 200 people who worked on, say, Starcraft, who was the producer, the artist, the game designer, the beta tester etc. As far as I can tell there is no way of identifying this at present.

    • For instance, How is Bill Gates' height relevant to the purpose of the project?
      I agree that without his weight it's impossible to extract any meaningful statistics. Very disapointing. Plus he's not even credited for the BASIC games in MS-DOS. :(
  • by oahazmatt ( 868057 ) on Monday July 03, 2006 @01:52PM (#15651222) Journal
    Oh, so they have the internet on software now?

    *throws away tubes*
  • The next step that should be included is the abandonware should have the product available (or a place from which) to download. Even better, with source code. The concern would be be insuring the integrity of the code from loss or trojans. One step further would be a code escrow for companies that the code would be released when instructed or the company disolved.

    Issues of embedded code would have to be dealt with, but that could be worked into the system.
  • Warning: mysql_connect(): Too many connections in /home/hsphere/local/home/moonwink/softwareidb.com/ includes/database.mysql.inc on line 31
    Too many connections

    Of course there are Web search engines. But there is still room for a well-edited repository of software meta-data, as long as they have good reviews, a very detailled taxonomy of software types (not just "games", "database", but rather "mobile text adventure", "embedded spatial database").

    The question is who is the audience, I couldn't tell be

  • IMDb (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Does everyone remembers when IMDb was totally free and now only paid members can comments? Such community sites tend to turn up their nose on the community which built it.
  • Probably shouldn't try to run this kind of project with a vanilla CMS (php-nuke???) on a shared server...

    Warning: mysql_connect(): Too many connections in /home/hsphere/local/home/moonwink/softwareidb.com/ includes/database.mysql.inc on line 31 Too many connections

  • Will Microsoft allow there software on it?
  • Success? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by spykemail ( 983593 )
    For this to be successful they need to develop a user friendly interface and attract non-technical users. This could easily become the IMDB for software IF it's made for everyone, not just us geeks.
  • Deja Vu? (Score:1, Insightful)

    I though we already have one [wikipedia.org].
    • Re:Deja Vu? (Score:3, Insightful)

      by belmolis ( 702863 )

      Some Wikipedia articles do have extensive lists of software, but Wikipedia is not supposed to be a link list. I've seen very useful lists of software deleted from Wikipedia articles precisely because they were just link lists, not references for the article. These deletions were correct under Wikipedia policy [wikipedia.org].

      • Some Wikipedia articles do have extensive lists of software, but Wikipedia is not supposed to be a link list.

        Sure, but what about having an article for each piece of software and just adding the proper category tag to it? Wikipedia's Category: Software [wikipedia.org] (and its sub-categories) lists all the articles for software already on Wikipedia, and it's already far more extensive than this new "Software Internet Database."
  • Down. Hellova start.
    Warning: mysql_connect(): Too many connections in /home/hsphere/local/home/moonwink/softwareidb.com/ includes/database.mysql.inc on line 31 Too many connections
  • There are already many sites like that out there already. What they could differ in is - provide some metadata about these software titles in machine-readable form.

    There is now DOAP (description of a project) [usefulinc.com] - a vocabulary / schema that allows to mark up such information.

    It would be much more fun to have machine-readable links between different titles that forked one from another, etc. Uses can be starting from "maps" of software evolution mentioned in above and to other uses yet to be imagined. (Note: I

  • MobyGames [mobygames.com] has been doing this with a custom interface specifically designed for game credits for over 7 years. Other sites like freshmeat.net have this covered for the OSS community. I don't really see the point of starting something like this... maybe half a decade ago, but not today.
  • This site is useless unless they categorize things. I shouldnt have to search for everything, let users browse also.
  • It was called 'archie'... And we all loved it.

    In case you arent old enough to remember the good old days of archie and gopher, this isnt a flame, its a joke.
  • How about a free software database, containing programs that are known to work on many different computer systems.

    It could be called... Debian!
  • For commercial software and share/freeware, I guess these guys have never been to VersionTracker [versiontracker.com]. It's been around for years, covers Windows, Mac 8/9/X, and PalmOS. It may not have everything, but it has a lot.

    For example, if you search on "Quark", the application comes up, as well as a ton of plug-ins ("XTensions" in Quark-speak).

1 Angstrom: measure of computer anxiety = 1000 nail-bytes