Source code visualization tools can provide amazing, shiny and pretty useless videos. CodeSwarm is a well known tool in many OSS projects, another one is Gource. Gource is a tool for visualizing commit history in your version control system. Gource produce an easy to understand repository tree showing active areas and users. To produce a video, simply run this command.
gource -s 0.03 --auto-skip-seconds 0.1 --file-idle-time 500 --max-files 500 --multi-sampling -1280x720 --stop-at-end --output-ppm-stream - | ffmpeg -y -b 3000K -r 24 -f image2pipe -vcodec ppm -i - -vcodec mpeg4 gource.mp4
Here is the result for the first 6 month with tv4play.
Ok, that was nice!
But how could we use visualization tools to something more meaningful?
- It is possible to identify new development, large refactoring, collaboration and developmentspeed.
- Use visualiztion tools to evaluate OSS project, e.g. is the community solid?
- Explaining how software collaboration work and how developers come and goes.
Watch this Michael Ogawa video to learn more about Sofware Visualization.