Krugle

20 02 2006

krugleIt might be a bit early to say something interesting about krugle, given that it hasn’t launched yet, but I’ll try.

Judging from the product brief alone, it should really rock. But of course, all that matters is execution. I think relevance can be a big issue here. One of the screenshots shows search results for “java hash map”. How do you decide that a search result from Eclipse is more relevant than a search result from Apache Portals?

Koders has the same problem here, though. However, searching for “java hash map” is not very meaningful: Any competent Java programmer would just use a java.util.HashMap. It would be more useful to search for, say, “red-black tree algorithm in java”. There Koders fails miserably, whereas Google does find some results which seem relevant. How will Krugle fare? I don’t know, but if I manage to be accepted in the beta program, I will surely report.

I have also some reservations about the emphasis on componentized software:

The world has shifted from inflexible, monolithic applications written in isolation to applications built with components that can easily be modified and leveraged.

Unfortunately, at least in my humble opinion, the promise of reusable, modifiable components has failed to materialize so far, except maybe for VB programmers. It’s true that you can find many freely available libraries, toolkits and frameworks, but try to find an application-level component that you can readily reuse without extensive rewriting and you’re suddenly faced with a much harder task.

Anyway, this shouldn’t detract from the fact that a search engine for Open Source code can actually be useful, if properly implemented. I’m currently thinking whether it would be possible and worthwhile to mash up The Open Source Zone with Krugle. Do they provide an API?

Last but not the least, they have Chris Locke on board as “Blog Wrangler”. Well, this probably shows that they have a clue, at least. 😉

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5 responses

20 02 2006
Matthew Langham

Hi Ugo,

I chatted to the Krugle guys in San Francisco last week. 3 additional pieces of information:

– Krugle actually sucks in all the source code into their own repository

– They have been asked about maybe providing a version of Krugle that can be deployed say inside large companies. They are looking into this.

– If I understood this correctly, they plan on “selling” space on the results :-). One example I was given – if you search for something that results in code from SUN being shown then you will be able to download the code if you have signed up on the SUN page. If not then you will have to sign up there first before you can download the source. Other examples being say placing your ad on the results page for specific code snippets.

Again, this as I understood it is currently the idea they have. As to exactly what they plan on implementing – that remains to be seen I guess.

Matthew

20 02 2006
Anjan Bacchu

hi there,

“The world has shifted from inflexible, monolithic applications written in isolation to applications built with components that can easily be modified and leveraged.”

I believe what they’re saying is “Yes, java et all should follow VB’s component model” and we will help lead such a change. As of now, we’re not there BUT maybe a component industry around the open source/commercial (java) world will emerge where one can quickly borrow nice chunks of tested real-world code.

It is a shame that more than 10 years after VB established a component marketplace, the other languages have not picked up and built a decent component model that works! An open source lead in such an area would help — the GNOME desktop had some component model project but that did not spread to other open source projects. Open source should certainly help except we should first put down such a model.

BR,
~A

BR,
~A

20 02 2006
Bessed.com » Blog Archive » Krugle

[…] 4. Krugle at Agylen.com – Blog post from Ugo Cei about Krugle conveys excitement about the launch but not full confidence that the execution will match the hype. (agylen.com) […]

21 02 2006
Gregory Cosmo Haun

You might give http://www.codefetch.com a try. It searches code from books.

You can use the generous snippets to easily see if the results at hand are relevant:
http://www.codefetch.com/search?qy=hash+map&lang=java

Here’s a search for red-black tree:
http://www.codefetch.com/search?qy=red-black+tree&lang=java

21 02 2006
federico

You might even consider using JExamples.com, if you are searching only for java code

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