A friend of mine recently turned me on to a project named CDE, a packaging utility designed to make transferring apps between systems clean and simple.
When working “in the cloud”, its quite common for researchers to have a program they are working on and need to deploy that program with all its dependencies on many systems. Under heavy development these programs and their dependencies can change quite rapidly. Updating the environment on multiple systems can be time consuming.
CDE’s aim is to help alleviate this. By their own admission, this is not a replacement for time-tested production distribution systems like apt and yum. But for researchers looking to quickly deploy a rapidly changing application without worrying very much about the current state of the systems they are deploying to, this project could prove to be very useful.