All The Code – New Search Engine for Programmers

The announcement in TechCrunch about the launch of All The Code prompted a deeper dive into this highly specialized type of vertical search.

All The Code at this time is a source code search engine for the Java language only. Plans are in the works to add more languages later. All The Code has no mechanism for submission of code. This too is promised for the future. It looks like there is a lot of development still to do. According to the engine's FAQ a relevancy algorithm that takes into consideration the code and its frequency of use differentiates All The Code from the other code source engines.

This new entrant will have to run against some formidable competition that has a running head start, most notably Google, Krugle and Koders. In October 2006, Google launched Google Code which is a searchable repository of publicly accessible code gathered from across the Internet. The archive includes code in a number of different languages and results can be filtered by language.

Koders' CEO Darren Rush in November 2006 told WebProNews that Koders does not rely on public domain code, like Google Code, and is now transitioning beyond the code on the web, into more closed environments, to serve the needs of all developers from open source and enterprise.

In October, Ken Krugler, posting in the Krugle blog noted that:

the single biggest task that all code engines face is that the code itself represents an implementation of an algorithm, some functionality, business logic, whatever - but it's hard to derive the intent from (most) function and variable names
.

It remains to be seen how this challenge will be met, and all of the code engines appear to have their work cut out for them. Today a coder's best bet is to use multiple engines to try and find code that will meet the task.

About the author

Amanda Watlington is the owner of Searching for Profit, a search marketing consultancy focusing on the interaction of the consumer with businesses using search engines, RSS, blogs, podcasting or other new media to deliver their message. She is a frequent speaker at Search Engine Strategies, WebmasterWorld and other industry conferences. She's the author of three books and has written feature articles for over thirty magazines and journals. She has twenty years of experience as a communications, sales and business strategy consultant, and over ten years as a search marketer.