The widespread sharing of Government-written source code has been a brainchild of mine for years, but now it is finally possible!
With the help of OMB and their MAX Wiki, I set up a the Web Code Sharing wiki space at: https://max.omb.gov/community/display/WebShare/Home … and it needs YOUR code!
Guidance on how to share your code and download code from others is provided on the home page of the wiki space.
You can also use the wiki space to request code that others may have.
So have at it, and please be in touch if you have suggestions to improve the space. I know that sometimes the MAX Wiki is hard to access, so you have trouble, you can also just email me your source code at [email protected], and I’ll post it for you.
By the way, only Feds can participate in OMB’s MAX wiki at this time, but the MAX Team is working with us to open this space to State and Local Government too.
It is kind of a shame that you can’t use Forge.mil – or a real social coding structure like Github.com.
It is a good use of the Max Portal. They may develop code sharing functionality one day.
Here’s the fundamental problem. If I have to deal with zip files, categorization, and querying via an obscure scheme it really isn’t worth the effort. When “sharing” code – one should literally be just exposing the code from a repository (assuming it is in some project form) or displaying the raw code/script in a browser view. There are a ton of “freely” available tools for this such as Trac (which sits on top of Subversion), or multi-project structures like GForge, SourceForge, Redmine, Gitorious and now Github. The last two actually deal with the social aspects of sharing code, and the management of the relationship between repositories and developers – optimizing the workflow. Although, the wiki has been made to serve this purpose it just isn’t practical for really sharing code – the key being the code.
The whole reason the DoD instantiated Forge.mil (https://software.forge.mil) was because these other tools just didn’t cut it. I’m surely not suggesting that Forge.mil is the right answer – but at least it is the a source code/software project tool.
If you’ve not seen Github.com I highly suggest a look at how it works (http://www.github.com). Sure ‘git’ or any repostory/version control tool can be a bit daunting. But, using one will most assuredly improve the “sharing” workflow – and very quickly. Sorry Nicholas – wasn’t really wanting to be a PITA.
Can fed contractors gain access?
You’ll require a .mil or .gov addy
Thanks Nicholas. Will you submit another blog when/if this opens up to state and local government?
Thanks for all the awesome comments!
I will post another blog as more developments come along.
Kit, you are absolutely right, but this is a first step to prove the concept of sharing within the government. If I can build a business case for a better system, then you might see something like forge.gov come online before too long.