Hi to all of you out there!
The last couple of days I am itching about how I can start contributing to open source projects. This is something I wanted to do since always. Some years ago, me and my friend Lefteris contributed to a project called Dragora. It was kinda slow in the beginning and we had no patience. This project is one of the free GNU/Linux distributions which are completely free. This means free of proprietary code, not free of charge! Every line in this OS is open and non proprietary!
So, we started with the translation of the website in Greek (yes, we did not know how to write C++ or sth similar close to the metal) and then we wrote some articles on the Wiki and finally convinced Matias, the creator to open an account in LinuxQuestions.org, in order for the project to get some exposure to a broad audience and user pool. Eventually though, we fell frustrated by the slow progress of everything and gave up. To be honest we usually start projects together, get excited and then quit them. Isn’t this right Lefteris? 🙂
Honestly, I feel we were too inexperienced back then, therefore too impatient to wait for anything. All we did all the time was exploring new things and trying our skills against difficult and irrelevant projects. Now, things are different!
First of all, we now know what we love and what we hate doing! We also know better ways to accomplish anything we have in mind. Not just skimming through tutorials and starting projects for no other reason than learning something new! Nowadays, we feel obliged to cope with projects that really mean something to us and we contribute to everything that can give value to others too. Nonetheless, we always had this mindset of giving to the community as we are GNU enthusiasts and we love programming and helping other people out!
Apart from all these, I think during these years of coding, working, meeting new developers, reading and studying hard we finally got to the point where now we want to give back to the community from the wealth we accumulated within us. We are ripe like fruits ready to fall on the ground and spread their seeds around. So, yeah: now our knowledge and will to contribute comes from within mostly. It is not something like bragging or showing off, or even doing it for gaining a better job. We use open source tools million others made for us and now it is our time to give back anything that will probably benefit someone like they did for us.
Call to action
If you want to get involved in open source projects, here is my own starting point too. A great starting point in my opinion:
It is a great video series from Kent C. Dodds, a great guy who wants to help new people get involved with open source projects.
I really love this one here on his website:
If you’re unimpressed with my website it’s because I’m too busy
hanging out with my family,
building awesome things,
and doing stuff for the community.
UPDATE: And here it is: my first Pull request (PR) to the Eggheadio-github/stack-overflow-copy-paste repository waiting to get merged by Kent C. Dodds himself and finally merged to the repo:
The feeling is quite nice and rewarding, although I expected it to be harder!