Update, 9:57am: Well, I feel a bit foolish. Looks like Google is planning to host some open source projects.
Brian thinks the world needs google projects. Unlike Brian, I am not a committer on any open source project, but I do use a fair number. I also have believed in the principles of open source for years.
Does the world need yet another projects website? As I said above, I can’t speak for committers, but as a user of their work, I’d like the environment to be as productive as possible for them (how generous of me, no?).
But as a user, I can tell you that a real problem is just finding some of the great work that has already been done. As an example, Google and Yahoo had no idea that the CalendarTag library was out there, at least in the first 30 pages of results. Perhaps I was choosing poor keywords, but I had a tough time finding what I was looking for. Perhaps a microformat for open source software projects would help?
SourceForge has flaws, but the fact is that its search found what I was looking for, probably because SourceForge search is by nature limited to software projects. The fact that you have to go through three pages to download a tarball is an annoyance, but not a capital one. It’s overweighed by the fact that SF has a enormous number of projects (126,520, as of today) and is relatively fast.
Brian and I are approaching the problem of a new projects database from different perspectives, but I believe that one very real problem in management of open source projects is location of the appropriate project; search in other words. Sites like CMSMatrix are a start, but don’t work as well for smaller components. And adding Google Projects to the mix isn’t going to solve this problem.