I don't know any engineers who value github activities of a candidate to the point of letting a her in easily. In my experience, mostly recruiters jump onto those with a fair-looking github profile (like me). I have worked with many talented engineers who were more experienced and better programmers than myself, and they barely did anything outside of private repos.
It just so happened that I write code outside of work, but that's changed a lot since I gave birth to my daughter.
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