This is another not-yet-fully-formed thought. This iteration of the thought came up again through a conversation with Bret Mulligan, a classics professor I work with, who wants a way to use git with open educational resources for classics.

I keep coming back to this dream of bringing together the two different systems we are referring to when we talk about repositories. There are repositories, by which we usually mean institutional repositories, which have some really wonderful features – the benefit of great metadata being one of the most notable. If not in practice, at least in theory. They also contain an ‘of record’ version of a project. Then there are “repos”, on the other hand, by which we usually mean git repositories. They have many great qualities! They have the benefit of allowing for new commits, for branching and forking and sharing in robust and powerful ways. And, they are extremely widely used and adopted, and so learning git helps you learn many other things. What I want is a repository of repos?

That can’t be right.

What I want is a system that will allow for rich metadata, structure, etc to be created about and including git repositories.

What I want is a repo of git repo that doesn’t have such a steep learning curve for novices, and that can include controlled metadata about its pieces. That can be nested comfortably into a hierarchy of other repositories…

I want to find/make/use that.

Opendataphilly links to lots of git repositories, which is awesome. It’s almost perfect but it’s not quite what I’m thinking of.