So you have always wanted to contribute to an open-source project but you are still actively looking through a lot of projects and feeling overwhelmed? u checked a lot of projects but can’t find the perfect issue to get started? Listen/Read on because Nabarun has some tips for you.
For those who don’t know @theonlynabarun, he is an OSS Engineer at @VMware and was also the release head for @kubernetesio and during his coffee session with the community @fastprogrammer he shared a few interesting tips on how to get started with OSS
It’s all about the people/community. OSS is not about the code but the community. his approach was to find out projects he wanted to get involved with and then find the maintainers or other top contributors and reach out to them personally. Maintainers love to help people get on board if you ask properly!
Ask the maintainers to suggest an issue you can work on. Once you have found some people to reach out to, write a well-crafted message telling them about your areas of interest and expertise and ask them to suggest an issue. Works better than searching for
A good mentor is gold. Finding a senior who u gel with early on can be a game-changer, they will help set u up for success. Be on the lookout for opportunities like this. Personally, the people in OSS are some of the nicest people out there so your chances are very high.
Break down your goal into small parts you can get a bit dizzy, especially with large projects but the key is to focus on the small wins. read the tutorial, try that out, try building from source, reproduce the issue you solving etc. Make small wins and keep moving forward.
Stay consistent “the best things in life come from compound interest”. once you have your first PR in, don’t go looking for the next good-first-issue. Stay with the project, get to know the maintainers better, get more familiar with the codebase, build your network. Keep at this and slowly you will see your dev life-changing.