I vaguely remember visiting the site while back, but it really got my attention by chance yesterday. I was googling Ketarin (because site was down as I noticed in Ketarin, very meta) and was quite impressed with its profile at alternativeTo – application directory that primarily aims to offer alternatives to software titles (much likes osalt but with more broad focus).
What it does
Basically site is a software directory – place where many software apps have profile pages with information. Where it goes slightly different is that instead focus on info about app itself it places spotlight on similar apps, that might serve as replacement.
Everything can be filtered by platform. Apps are properly tagged and it is always visible if they are free and what platform(s) they run on.
One of the simplest core metrics of software directory is how much of software it has and is it balanced against quality of selection and information. It is somewhat subjective metric, formed by gut feeling and years of messing with software.
Well, alternativeTo scores pretty high for me. There are a lot of titles, relevance of suggestions is quite good and really solid stuff seems to float to top.
Site gives that warm fuzzy feeling of fellow geeks doing what they love. It is packed full of integration with social services (such as Twitter) and nice extras if you want to do something with it yourself:
- numerous RSS feeds,
- JS widgets;
- WordPress plugin;
- JSON API.
My only gripe with site that a lot of information ends up being cluttered. Too much going on page, too many similar links and in many places font size it too small to be comfortable in such design.
I barely scratched surface there, this is one of those sites that allows some real digging (that often ends up in discovering some real gems of a software).