Searching for a specific open source software

Did you ever thought about how one can find an open source equivalent project for an upcoming new application? We just did. Company is going to create an entirely new application for an online reservation system using ASP.NET. This reservation systems is used to reserve time of a group of people (like lawyers) for another group of people (clients). But I’m going to suggest the boss to find a similar open source project and evolve it. By this, we can save some times of development hours, evolve an existing open source project and learn something new by contributing an open source project.

In order to convince the boss to use (and contribute in) an open source project rather than creating a new one, I’m forced to find a similar project. As I’m not very familiar with abbreviations, expressions and idioms of English, I asked a question in StackOverflow: How can I determine if there is an open source software for a specific purpose? Then StackOverflow folks directed me to search in sites like SourceForge, Google Code, CodePlex, CodeProject, Ohloh and even Google Search.

Using Google Search I realized that most off reservation software goes around hotel and airline reservation and also find phpScheduleIt that was not similar to our desired reservation system (a sample installation).

In SourceForge I searched for keyword “Reservation, Time Reservation and Person Reservation” and find 2 categories of reservation systems: 1. Hotel and restaurant reservations and 2. Equipment reservations. Which none of them fit into my requirements that deals with “Person and Time Reservation”.

CodePlex offered very little results. In CodePlex I found NerdDinner that was very irrelevant to my case. Then I found OpenReservation that was near my purpose but seems to be staled.

In CodeProject there was just some Hotel and Reservation projects but nothing more.

Ohloh was like SourceForge.

Finally searching in Google Code lead me to results like medical, hotel, classroom, restaurant, taxi and Airline reservation. So none of then were useful for me.

At the end of searching I realized there is nothing available for me, but I learned that SourceForge is the greatest and best place to search for open source project. And it seems that it’s always better to search for a project in open source sites before starting a new one even like my case, no previously started project is found.