September 16, 2013

Gratuitous Shiny: Gource

Helix Swarm

A couple weeks ago I wrote about the version control history visualizer code_swarm. code_swarm provides an interesting view of how files connect developers to each other, but it doesn't give any insight into the relationship of the files themselves. To get a sense of how the tree structure evolved over time we can use the popular visualizer Gource.

Gource is an open source project written by Andrew Caudwell that visualizes changes to the file and folder structure of a project over time. Gource is very nice in that it can actually run in real time unlike code_swarm and users can adjust the visualization as it runs. Gource is also under constant development with a regular stream of features and bug fixes.

My favorite part of watching a Gource animation is the developers flying around the source tree shooting laser beams like angry laser laden bees. My only complaint is there is seemingly no way to have the beams shoot from the developers eyes.

The data generation script from the last blog post conveniently also works for Gource. Grab the data generator and Gource and have at!