Its rare I blog about really technical stuff here, so I want to forewarn you that this blog will be very technical in nature and very cool like my other blogs. Originally, I thought about posting this over at the WebTech blog however these are my personal opinions and I am not speaking on behalf of the WTG or anything like that. Just me, writing over here.
As most people know, Concerto uses SVN for version control. Its worked really well for everything that I’ve needed it to, and I have no reason to complain or dislike it. I’ve started to play around with Git for my work on the bonsai-video project and I like some of what I see. The ability to commit locally and then send it up to the main server is a neat feature… though I’m not sure why I would every want to not push my changes to the server right away… its still neat to have the “offline” support.
The coolest thing about git isn’t even a feature of git itself, its github.com. I really like the social components introduce into the programming area. People can freely make their own copy of the code and start doing their own stuff… with a moderately useful web interface to tie it all together. Typically I would download the source code for a program, make my changes locally, and call it a day. With github there is an easy way to share those changes with others without having to formally submit a patch to the maintainers.
This social coding stuff makes me think twice about my general dislike for git and I’ve actually considered looking to switch Concerto to GitHub. It has nothing to do with git vs svn at all actually, if the site was SVNHub we might already be there…well maybe not, there is also the issue of locally hosted vs remotely hosted repositories. Github would certainly be a quick and easy way to track what other people are doing with their own copies of Concerto.
On another note, this past weekend we’ve finished work on the Concerto public site: http://www.concerto-signage.com which means you can finally download Concerto and start to do cool things with it! For those of you who don’t know, Concerto is an open-source digital signage system that was developed at RPI. I’ve been working on it since the spring of 2007 and I’m glad to see its being publicly released for everyone to enjoy. If you just want to check out what you can do with it, the demo page has instructions to login to a demo system we’ve setup. If you have any feedback, I’d love to hear it!