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I did see the thread about an iPhone app, which was not too popular, but I thought this idea was unique enough that it should be posted.

I'm currently contributing to all four SO sites. Particularly where Super User and Stack Overflow are concerned, I'm finding it difficult to keep up. Perhaps I need to choose which sites to contribute to in order to keep myself from going nuts, but I also think a desktop app would have a chance at better integrating the sites for those of us who use more than one concurrently.

Also, it might help bring into prominence some of the SO family features which are currently a little underused, like favorites, notifications (one e-mail a day?) &c.

I am not capable of building such an application myself, but I'd be interested to see what people think of this idea.

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closed as off topic by Pops, jonsca, Toon Krijthe, kiamlaluno, animuson Sep 21 '12 at 23:52

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5 Answers 5

I have never seen any suggestion as far as a desktop app, but I would imagine that if/when a usable API is developed for the different StackExchange sites, any type of application could be developed regardless of their environment.

I don't know how well a desktop-app would do in comparison to a web-app that can be accessed from anywhere, but I imagine that it would be a popular idea for people to work on.

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Ooops, bit a blond moment, not thinking of an API. Should I start a new question for that do you think (couldn't find an existing one)? –  Ehtyar Jul 16 '09 at 1:11
    
@Ehtyar: I have not seen a full-blown API thread yet on Meta (it was very popular on uservoice). –  TheTXI Jul 16 '09 at 2:45
    
stackoverflow.com/questions/231847/… seems to be closed as belongs-on-meta but not migrated... otherwise this one is quite popular: stackoverflow.com/questions/350248/… –  fretje Aug 2 '09 at 17:41

I considered creating a desktop app using the Adobe AIR runtime, however I have delayed the project since there is no open API, and because screen scraping is rather frowned upon for large requests.

If and when methods to accomplish this become available, I'm sure I as well as others will begin to make applications focused around SO sites.

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I don't think scraping would be too bad, since you could do it based on just the "recent" activity for your account on each service. –  Nosredna Jul 16 '09 at 1:26
    
How do you get recent comments/questions/answers? Also there's no way to post remotely. –  Ian Elliott Jul 16 '09 at 1:31

RSS feeds and HTTP POST operations should suffice...

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Not for a fully functional application. –  Ian Elliott Jul 16 '09 at 1:31
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define "fully functional" [and please no Star Trek Mr. Data jokes] –  Steven A. Lowe Jul 16 '09 at 14:44

If there are no legal restrictions about a desktop 'frontend' (e.g. Jeff does incredible effort to make them non-working) it is possible. With bit of fear, I propose my desktop implementation:

Open Stack Overflow Frontend @ 0.62

It is fully open source (LGPL) and uses only public information (e.g no inpersonation). Please have a look at it if you wish. (and hope it remains functional). At the current level, it's quite operational but there are still much to do in terms of functionality, and of course testers and improvement suggestions are always welcome.

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That's some pretty awesome work kd304, thank you! Keep us posted with any further progress if ya can. –  Ehtyar Aug 2 '09 at 11:40
    
Just watch the site for new versions and report anything you discovered, or any feature requests you can imagine in my app. –  kd304 Aug 2 '09 at 13:10
    
Can you substantiate your assertion that Jeff works to block 3rd party applications? If so that is pretty hypocritical of him after his experience with CraigsList and I'd lose a little respect for him. –  joshperry Nov 4 '09 at 19:56
    
I think he was just saying that unless Jeff does that, all should be ok. –  Valentin Rocher May 1 '10 at 19:07
    
Wow dude @kd304 - your desktop app is amazing! I love the Analysis feature; brilliant! –  shane Jun 28 '12 at 4:27

An Eclipse plugin would be a nice touch - of course, if you use Eclipse, that is. It would allow for fast code lookups and mockups, and have the added benefit of seeming like 'work' to your employers!

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