Hello activeCollab. I’ve been wanting to have more projects in Basecamp for a while, but am extremely resistant to shelling out money on tools. Now, thanks to activeCollab, I don’t have to. I downloaded it earlier this week and was going to set it up on one of my domains, then I noticed that it was a one-click install on Dreamhost (affiliate). Even better! 5 minutes and it was ready to go.
Now, it’s not a complete clone with features such as writeboards (use writely) and time-tracking not there (a feature which I’ve yet to look at in basecamp), and I think basecamp feels a little smoother and more polished. But, I can sacrifice these if it means it’s FREE! (assuming you already have a hosting account or server). Check out Slacker Manager for more detailed comparison of the two
Now, here’s the thing, I’ve read comments defending the Basecamp business model, saying how activeCollab won’t make an impact because it’s not hosted and you have to install it. Well, in my opinion, with the one-click install path, it’s easier to get activeCollab up and running than signing-up for Basecamp. Plus you’ll have a full-fledged hosting account (which you can run other apps on), all for less than a Basecamp account. Finally, for the concerned corporate people, you can keep the app (and the data) behind the firewall.
As a side note, I feel myself tiring of 37signals. I generally like their apps and message (I bought the 10 seat Getting Real to share with co-workers) and I’ve been inspired in many ways by them. But, I thought this post was complete bullshit. I mean, it’s a freakin’ magazine cover. Misleading? Sure, but aren’t most? That’s how they get people to buy them. 37signals gets lots of press, but as soon as a Web 2.0ish article appears that doesn’t include them and includes companies not following their mantra of no VC, they have to get all pissy. Let the guys enjoy their press. Digg may not sell for $200 million now, but it’s surely big enough to make Rose a lot of money someday.