Karl Fogel

Karl Fogel at

Hey, folks, what's your best current answer to a person who says "I'd like to get more involved in open source -- how do I find a project that will be appropriate for me?"  I get this question all the time.  I used to point them to @OpenHatch but alas it's now defunct.


Mike Linksvayer, AJ Jordan, Ben Sturmfels likes this.

Mike Linksvayer, AJ Jordan, McClane shared this.

Show all 6 replies
Sure project you use is the obvious answer and the many ez bug aggregators since, before(?), and including OpenHatch underwhelm, but here's another take: find something important to work on e.g., https://www.fsf.org/campaigns/priority-projects is one take.

Relatedly I'd love to see Effective Altruism evaluation of FLOSS generally, and methodology applied to evaluating FLOSS projects.

This seems like a good time to also plug https://www.appropedia.org/Welcome_to_Appropedia as sort of being at the intersection of open [everything] and distributed exploration potentially effective interventions.

Mike Linksvayer at 2019-06-30T17:27:33Z

Oh, one other obvious approach: tell them about a project you contribute to and can give pointers on contributing to, or even mentor.

For you https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/manual/html_node/emacs/Contributing.html ?

Another: projects that you have confidence are well run and welcoming, because you've evaluated them. For you https://sfconservancy.org/projects/current/


Mike Linksvayer at 2019-06-30T17:45:00Z

Reposted above comments at https://twitter.com/mlinksva/status/1145384664124706816 and added a few more, below...

Finally, https://opensource.guide/how-to-contribute/#finding-a-project-to-contribute-to … includes standard project you use advice, plus list of ez bug ~aggregators, plus quote from you @kfogel but some or all of that material may benefit from updating.

Finally', [project you use] but with a job/company bent: project your employer/company depends on that you can get permission/away with contributing to on the job. Super soft pitch https://opensourcefriday.com/businesses

Finally'' next level of Finally', appropriate project is one you can get hired to contribute to, so find job that requires contributing to an open source project. After hire, that open source project is the appropriate one for you to get involved in.

Mike Linksvayer at 2019-06-30T18:18:55Z

» Karl Fogel:

“[...] "I'd like to get more involved in open source -- how do I find a project that will be appropriate for me?" [...]”

In my opinion, if they are currently using FLOSS programs they can pick any of the ones they use so they won't need any FLOSS directory to find the right one for them. I think they must be honest with themselves about what their skills are (not just programming) and how much they want to get involved.

The most basic thing they can probably do to help is to spread the "FLOSS word" among their family, friends and acquaintances. To me, that's beeing involved in FLOSS already. Of course, the next steps could be help translating software, giving answers/support to other people using the same software and, finally, get involved in the development of the code.

EVAnaRkISTO@DM at 2019-06-30T20:47:17Z