4 Tips for Finding Your First Open Source Project
Alright, you made it to the second post! 🎉🎊(If you need a refresher or have no idea what Open Source projects are, check out the previous post here).
Now, we’re at the hard part…finding an open source project.
When I first started my Open Source journey(well more like finding it by accident like most great inventions) I’m not going to lie to you, it was very difficult to find an open source project because there were so many out there.
Exactly Emir! It’s like being in a buffet restaurant and not knowing which food to pick!
Now, don’t worry. Eventually, I found some open source projects that align with my interest, and I’m going to share 4 tips that have helped me achieve this.
Now, let’s get started in
1. Think about your passions
Are you passionate about animals, women’s rights, making education accessible, or just a lover of fanfiction? There are so many open source projects out there and it can get overwhelming sometimes, so asking yourself these questions will make it easier for you to stay focused. For me, making education accessible is my passion, so I decided to zero in on open source projects that have this purpose. Eventually, I found projects like Accessibleforall.
2. Ask your colleagues
I know asking for help can be very intimidating (trust me, I’ve been there), but getting recommendations from your colleagues is a great way to find open source projects. Consider asking your Computer Science professor about open source projects they recommend for you or post the question on Stack Overflow or whatever online coding community you’re part of. If it weren't for my colleagues at Scrimba’s Discord community, I probably would have never discovered SheSharp’s repository.
3. Use online tools
It can take a while to find an Open source project that suits you, so I highly recommend going to websites that provides lists of projects to contribute to. Here are my personal favorites:
4. Read other sources for advice
While I am flattered that you decided to give little ole’ me a chance 😀, I’m not the only person who shared tips on how to navigate the jungle called Open Source. Like they always say, “It takes a village to find an Open Source project”(yes, I’m aware that’s not the actual quote, but you get the message). Here are some guides that have helped me find open source projects:
Finding Open Source Projects you can commit to by Eddie Jaoude
How to Find Open Source Projects for Beginners by Ashutosh Mishra
Step up your front-end skills with these 5 sources by Kevin Powell (skip to 10:01)
I know finding your first open source project to contribute to can be scary (trust me, I’ve been there), so whenever you get stuck, ask yourself the following questions:
What am I passionate about?
What projects have my friends worked on?
What websites can help me find projects?
What other advice is out there?
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