Effority/Benjamin Hermann is the undisputed "King of the Forge" and I doubt that I will ever catch him. However, you might.
IWeb along with "Code Endeavors DotNetNuke Templates for C# and VB.NET" was one of the first two projects when the Forge was created. Two months later, Benjamin started creating projects for the Forge.
Then Effority released EALO.
It was like signing Michael Jordan to your team. This module puts up such huge numbers no current module comes close. A year ago the module would get about 30 downloads a week. Two days ago it got over 50 downloads in one day. Not only is it the number one DotNetNuke module in the Forge but it's gaining speed.
As of 5/25/2009 lets look at the numbers for the 1st two pages in the DotNetNuke Forge:
|Person ||Project ||Votes ||Downloads|
|Benjamin Hermann ||Ealo - Localization for DotNetNuke ||57 ||7526|
|Jon Henning ||Code Endeavors DotNetNuke Templates for C# and VB.NET ||101 ||4768|
|Ian Lackey/Michael Washington ||IWeb - DotNetNuke WebServices Module ||121 ||3905|
|Oliver Hine ||Weather ||80 ||3790|
|William Severance ||Image Upload and Editor Control ||88 ||3094|
|Philipp Becker ||Magic Content ||44 ||3036|
|David Lee ||NB_Store - Free DotNetNuke Ecommerce Catalog Module ||14 ||2840|
|Benjamin Hermann ||User Directory Module for DotNetNuke ||51 ||2837|
|Philipp Becker ||dot.CRM ||64 ||1766|
|barbus ||DNN Content Builder WCMS ||8 ||1508|
|Donald Peter ||Downloads ||22 ||1160|
|ErikVB ||DotNetNuke IdentitySwitcher ||36 ||1128|
|Benjamin Hermann ||Workflow HTML / Versioning HTML Module for DotNetNuke ||2 ||1058|
|Charles Nurse ||The Family Tree project ||25 ||1013|
|Chris Hammond ||DnnCart - An open source shopping cart for DotNetNuke ||82 ||1007|
|Ian Lackey/Michael Washington ||IWebCF - DotNetNuke WCF Services Module ||3 ||994|
|CurlyFro ||Dotnetnuke Upcoming Events Addon ||7 ||820|
|Philip Beadle ||TestDrivenDNNModule ||6 ||751|
|Ian Lackey/Michael Washington ||SilverlightDesktop for DotNetNuke ||6 ||696|
|Charles Nurse ||DotNetNuke Module Toolkit ||18 ||692|
Now let's look at it by individual:
|Benjamin Hermann ||11421|
|Ian Lackey/Michael Washington ||5595|
|Philipp Becker ||4802|
|Jon Henning ||4768 |
|Oliver Hine ||3790|
|William Severance ||3094|
|David Lee ||2840|
It's not even close. Effority/Benjamin has more than twice the downloads of the nearest competitor (Ian and myself). Ian and I still have 10 more votes than Effority's projects but I expect that statistic will soon be history in a few weeks.
The reason I shake my head in amazement at these huge numbers is that the DotNetNuke Forge is a open even playing field. Anyone can create a project by just clicking on this link. When Effority dominates the field so decisively they have entered the arena with every module developer in the world and have emerged as number one.
Why Count the Numbers?
When you're giving software away for free you do it because you want people to use it. The more people the better. You also challenge yourself to become a better programmer. You will think twice about taking a shortcut when you know someone can easily look at your source code on CodePlex.com and post to the DotNetNuke Forum how stupid your method was on line 437 in "View.ascx.cs".
When you're up against other candidates for a job, the fact that 10,000 people are using your code might just put you ahead of the other candidates. The last time I was out interviewing for a job half the people I interviewed with were using Open Source code I wrote. Needless to say the only question was how much they could pay me not if I was qualified for the job.
The Era of the "Houses"
About a year ago I did a blog post about the "We are Entering the DNN Forge Era". I see a lot of great projects in the past year an I think the Forge is getting stronger every day. In the future I think you will see more programmers banding together and forming "Collectives" or "Houses".
There are no set rules for programmers working together but more can be accomplished when they do work together. You will notice I lump Ian Lackey and myself together because we are able to support more projects by working together. We have some really cool stuff we are working on that I would never consider if I were working alone.
A Level Playing Field
Yes you can put your module in the DNN Marketplace or try to become a "Snow Covered Millionaire", but to set yourself apart from all the other modules out there you may want to pluck down some money and buy yourself one of the ads you see to the right of this blog. The "big players" are serious and those ads are not cheap.
To compete in the Forge you only need to write a good module and support it. You don't even need to host a website, CodePlex.com will give you all the tools you need absolutely free.
Anyone can create a project by just clicking on this link.