Here’s a Reason to Document

A search engine for code

This editorial was originally published on Feb 17, 2006. Steve is traveling in the UK this week and we are re-printing some old pieces.

A new search engine, Krugle, set to launch next month, is supposed to focus on code. Mostly open source code, but also places like SQLServerCentral.com, which has scripts and other types of code available. Wired has a good article on the idea behind this search.

It’s an interesting idea, though given the types of comments and the wide range of ways that things are described, I wonder if it will work. I know that we get lots of posts in the forums that I easily find answers for using Google when other don’t. I suspect that I am just searching on better terms than others. Course that doesn’t always work for my own questions, so perhaps it’s a second set of eyes that really help.

However this also depends on the actual coders spending some time to properly describe their system. That’s always a difficult task. But even assuming that they will describe their code well, how will you know if it will “plug in” easily to your system? I’ve seen lots of code that wouldn’t easily integrate with something I was writing.

And if I checked out 3 or 4 of these incompatible, or not easily integrated systems, from a search engine, I’d be tempted to just write my own. Actually I think lots of developers write their own code, or build on a base and then do everything themselves because it takes so long to integrate disparate code at times.

Still it’s a great idea and I hope it works.

Update Jul 13, 2011: Has anyone used, or is using, Krugle?

About way0utwest

Editor, SQLServerCentral
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