I’ve been shopping this idea around to some people because I don’t want to build it myself.
If someone wants to make a tool that’ll parse all of the dependency files in a set of github repositories, for example, all of the repositories in the Stanford HCI group’s github page, and generate a list of the packages, tools, etc… that are used by the group, as well as sets of people who use various dependencies, and render a page with all of the common tools that people in that group use.
So, for example, if you looked up AngularJS, you might find that Niloufar and I have both (independently) worked on projects where Angular was listed as a dependency.
This idea has come to light because our Slack organization has a channel called #slack-overflow where people can drop in with a question about any random thing. We’ve fielded questions about tons of different topics, but we’ve also failed pretty badly in a lot of cases.
I have, almost literally, no idea what she’s talking about.
My hunch is that the problem with this setup — a slack channel for tech support — is that you’re in this catch-22 where you can’t notify everyone naively to ask for help (I sure as hell don’t know anything about TensorFlow, and I don’t want to be notified about these kinds of questions), but I do want to be notified about questions that I at least might know something about.
As a technical solution, this is kind of clever, but
as any social scientist could probably tell you,
it’s not especially clever.
There’s a lot of knowledge that’s being overlooked and ultimately lost here,
but I would argue that this is a good way to bootstrap something.
We could use it to pre-populate a database with seeded information about a person.
For example, here’s the output from running a quick analysis of
package.json files on some of my projects:
So if you’re interested in building something like this, either have at it or just contact me or whatever. I don’t really feel like going and building it unless at least some other people think they (or their groups) would benefit from this.