How I became an Open Source contributor

Software, Uncategorized / Saturday, February 6th, 2016

Folks, a long-pending dream of mine has come true: I’ve become an Open Source contributor!

It was a chance praise on Twitter that I expressed towards PyBeeWare. I loved their artwork, their passion, and the very interesting suite of tools they were building. To my surprise, the Bee asked me if I’d like to contribute! Now, my understanding was that one gets invited to Open Source once one has proved his mettle with some terrifying personal projects, and I was naturally thinking that the Bee had mistaken me for a highly skilled developer.

I clarified my position, but the man behind the project was persistent. I must contribute, he wrote, because one of the projects was especially suited for beginners: VOC.

And so it began. I spent a night learning the GitHub workflow of fork-push-pull. The code was daunting, as expected, and used every dev tool I was unaware of: Unit Testing, Continuous Integration, Java, Python Internals, not to mention advanced Object-Oriented Programming.

But Russell has been a godsend all the way. Email by email, my questions are getting answered and I feel I can look towards making my mark soon. As I write this, four of my commits have already been merged into the main project. Yay!

Moral of the story: If you are a newbie developer willing to contribute to an Open Source project, VOC is the place to be and Russell is the man. Go for it!

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