The folks at JFrog have come out with a new repository called Bintray. The idea behind the name is that it can serve up all your binary packages on a silver tray. I got an inside look at Bintray (still in Beta) from JFrog cofounder and chief architect Fred Simon.
"So it's a little like Github?" I asked. "Well, yes but no," Simon tells me "Github manages the source code and Bintray is about delivering finished binary packages." On top of hosting and serving the packages, Bintray also keeps track of dependencies. "Oh," I say, "So it's more like Maven." Wrong again. Maven keeps track of dependencies in the libraries it hosts, but everything there is in a stagnant file system and it's hard to search through, according to Simon.
He says Bintray is supposed to make things clearer by adding a little bit of social flavor that lets end users navigate through to the code they need. It also lets them see what developer produced the code and what other projects that developer is working or has worked on. They also keep statistics on how frequently each package gets downloaded, so contributors and users can both see what's hot and what's not. Plus, there are options for keeping documentation right there with your binary packages.
All in all, I get the impression that Bintray is kind of like the Facebook for serious working developers. Not like today's weird Facebook where everyone and there great aunt is playing Farmville, commenting on funny cat pictures and leaving all too public personal or political rants. I think it's more like the Facebook of yore, when you had to be living on a college campus to use or understand the thing and the only features were the ones you'd actually use. But, and this is a big but, I'm not really a developer, I just write about this stuff. So please, do all of us here at TheServerSide.com a favor: check out Bintray and let us know if it lives up to its own hype.