Using Gource to Visualize Your Repositories

Today at the FLOSS Community Metrics meeting in Brussels, Belgium, I gave a short, 5-minute lightning talk about using Gource to visualize your source code repositories with a focus on navigating the myriad of Gource configuration options and how to tweak them to make Gource work better for your repository. In this blog post, I’ll give an overview of the talk, but for all of the details or to replicate the demo, you should have a look at the GitHub repository for the talk.

In the talk, I did a visualization of the MailingListStats (mlstats) repository from the Metrics Grimoire suite of tools, and here is the video generated using these options:

gource -f --logo images/bitergia_logo_sm.png --title "MailingListStats AKA mlstats" --key --start-date '2014-01-01' --user-image-dir images -a 1 -s .05 --path ../MailingListStats

Option Details:

  • --path /path/to/repo (or omit and run Gource from the top level of the repo dir)
  • -f show full screen
  • --logo images/bitergia_logo_sm.png
  • --title "MailingListStats AKA mlstats"
  • --key (shows color key for file types)
  • --start-date '2014-05-01'
  • --user-image-dir images (Directory with .jpg or .png images of users ‘Full Name.png’ for avatars)
  • -a 1 (auto skip to next entry if nothing happens in x seconds – default 3)
  • -s .05 (speed in seconds per day – default 10)

You can also manipulate the video while Gource is running:

  • Space bar to pause
  • Ctrl + / – to speed up or slow down
  • Use arrow keys to move camera
  • Mouse over timeline widget at the bottom and click on a date to move in time.

For additional information: