Hans van der Graaf

A picture of Hans van der Graaf Hans van der Graaf is born in The Netherlands in the summer of '65. He is, apart from being husband, father, employee and so on, fascinated by directories. Or better said Hans has a love and hate relationship with the current available directories.

Directories are great to browse, and browsing is often more fun than search. However, the current directories have some drawbacks. It is almost impossible to add your website to one of the current directories.

To much links

All link directories have the same problem. There are to much links for the editorial team to handle, so maintaining a link directory is hard.

When you are not part of the editorial team and want to add a link to a directory, you often run in one of the following problems:

  1. You have to beg, to get your website included in that directory
  2. There is a none working submission forms
  3. You don't get any response at all when you want to suggest a website (or it takes a very long time)
  4. You have to pay to get listed

The consequence is that all current directories, including Curlie* are getting out of date. They don't always deliver what you might expect. Often there are just a few links in a catagory while you know that there are much more relevant links. Even worse there are quite a few broken links.

* Curlie is historically known as the Open Directory Project (ODP) and as DMOZ. It is the largest, and probably the best, free link directory there is.

Hence Hans concluded that an alternative free directory shouldn't depend on editors, but should be a completly open wiki. You should be able to add a link hasslefree to a logical catagory without asking anyone. In other words, the goal was to reinvent DMOZ hence the name of this ZOMDir project.

In the summer of 2010 the first thoughts about the ZOMDir project where written down. January 2011 the domain name ZOMDir was claimed, and soon the first spin-offs were created. See also the blog blog.zomdir.com.

Due to the fact that ZOMDir started as a hobby project of one person, powered by other software projects, it took some time to build this alternative open directory project.

I hope you appreciate the result.