MTG Forge is interesting because it gives me a different idea of what software development actually is. I receive feedback from users and I create new versions of MTG Forge with more cards and bug fixes. This is a continual cycle of feedback and program updates that all software projects have. Traditionally the cycle between feedback and software updates has been lengthy, but MTG Forge is updated at least monthly.
MTG Forge is free and is an open source project, meaning that anyone can look at the code and submit updates or use the code for their own project. While the source code is still complicated, like the engine of a car, a person can just update part of the code and doesn’t have to understand the whole thing. Recently a reader updated the user interface to show the small card pictures, thanks Nantuko. (Thankfully MTG Forge is a little bit flexible.)
Like Napster, a great software project does something that people really want. People love music, so they also loved Napster. People love Magic, so they like MTG Forge. MTG Forge is an approximation of a real game. MTG Forge is far from perfect but it still lets people experience the excitement of winning with only 1 life point left.
What is your favorite piece of software? Is it a Mac, a videogame, or just regular e-mail?