How to contribute to open source

Once in a while I talk to someone who sais something like this: “I love open source, especially project X – I would love to contribute back, but I don’t know how”. There are different variations. “I am not a programmer”, “I don’t understand the code – it’s so vast”, “I wouldn’t know how to submit these patch-things they ask for” etc.

To help these people I decided to create a small (seriously – 3 posts, excluding this one) series about contributing to open source projects. I hope this will help more people get involved as they realize how much they can help with little effort.

I intend to do the following:

  • How to contribute to open source without writing a single line of code
  • How to contribute code to open source project without knowing its inner workings
  • How to contribute code to open source – reporting bugs and creating patches

This should cover most of the ground to get people started. The topic itself is certainly much broader, and one could write a whole book about it, but why waste time for that, when there’s some great open source waiting for your contribution!


Posted 09-06-2009 3:00 AM by Krzysztof Koźmic
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Comments

Cygal wrote re: How to contribute to open source
on 09-06-2009 2:55 PM

I think it's a great idea, I wrote this kind of things in my language and people are interested. Don't forget to link to et.redhat.com/.../how-to-supply-code-to-open-source-projects which is very useful. :)

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