Your First Open Source Project

olly profile image Onyebueke Emmanuel ・1 min read

Hi all, wanted to ask about the first open source project you contributed too, what was the experience like, were you scared your codes might not be standard, how did you discover the bug?


Editor guide

Hey there! Great questions & discussion!

My first contribution to open source was including my favorite pizza place in NYC here: github.com/stevekinney/pizza/pull/138 and perhaps my first "serious" one was for a library used in validating addresses that my previous company was using here: github.com/smartystreets/smartystr...

At first I was certainly nervous that my code wouldn't be "up to standard". But that fear subsides more as you realize that you are just trying to help and the maintainers of the project usually understand that & appreciate your efforts. Contributions are often not 'standard' and that is imo partly why open source is beautiful. Also I'll add, It is super gratifying when your pull request gets merged in!

Honestly the way I discover bugs is often documentation not matching what the behavior of the code. I think bugs become more obvious when we recognize that the developers are humans just like me & you. And that they are subject to making little bugs here and there ;)

Happy coding!


Thanks Edwin, I like the fact that yours was Pizza😂😂


:) Gotta start somewhere


My first open source project was a perl script that took a Netscape bookmark file, and converted it to one or more html files. I finally put it here on github a couple of months ago.


Howdy! My first project contribution was tiny, but I loved it. It was fixing a grammatical issue in the "You Don't Know JS" book series. As for code contributions, it's just been little things over the past few years, mostly that have to do with problems I'm encountering with use cases for some small libraries. I wasn't really scared at all - I was a professional writer before with hardcore editors, and they are much more brutal than a lot of developers reviewing my code! But that's not an experience many devs get.

A lot of people talk about OSS contributions in the form of "code". But I'd never leave out the value in documentation contributions.