Update – 7/28/2012: While the main KubeLabs.com url is up, any other link I click on the site appears to lead me to a nonfunctional dead link. I’ll have to revisit someday soon to see if it’s temporary or if they’ve hung it up for good over at KubeLabs.

PhpDug is an open source website script where users can post and share news, images, and videos. This software is another clone of the Digg website similar to Pligg which I’ve discussed briefly before. The only personal difference is I’ve actually installed and somewhat customized a site using Pligg, but not with PhpDug.

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With this kind of website framework, users submit their news which is then rated by others with the highest rated entries being seen first. A very simple concept with an extremely stickiness by giving the community the ability to decide what news is the most important. Running a site like this in a niche market is also a great way to tune in on what your community really finds the most valuable.

As I was clicking around the demo a few moments ago, I was about to say that the PhpDug one was hands down a more attractive default layout when compared to Pligg. However, just as I was traversing the categories, the site changed to a very dull, colorless site with incredible plainness. I still like the PhpDug look better though. It seems cleaner looking and appears it would be easier to customize.

I don’t think it’s worth competing with the big dogs using a clone, but I do believe this kind of site could be really effective if it was launched in the right community. Just think of what you could offer in your niche that people could rate. It doesn’t always have to be news either. It could be any number of things.

I just thought of a new one right now as I’m writing this so it looks like I’ll be installing PhpDug in the next few days. I told myself I’d write about all the great open source software available so I could avoid launching site after site from spur of the moment ideas. Instead, it has made it worse because that’s all I want to do lately.

If there were a hundred hours in the day, I’d still only get four hours sleep.