Thank you, Open Source!

If you are a software developer it is very likely that you leverage from open source, either directly or indirectly. Several years ago I realized, that I had been using open source software almost exclusively for a long time. That's when I asked myself: "What have I done to contribute back to the community?".

How can we contribute? Here are some ways:

  • Publish your own open source project
  • Contribute to an existing project with fixes or new features
  • Donate to an open source project
  • Write a blog post about an open source project
  • Ask your company to sponsor an open source project
  • As a stakeholder, ask your developers which project they use and how they contribute

I decided to go with two options:

  1. I published own projects, and I decided to do this on github in context of a team (pubcore)
  2. I donated small amounts on a monthly basis to 2 favorite projects I was using. opencollective.

Even if most of the things you'll publish won't be used by others, it is an enriching experience to learn how to publish and maintain a project. You'll never know what other people might find useful: Even if something is "bad" it might be used as a "bad" example! That's how it happened to me as well: I'm not using most of the stuff I published anymore, because other projects did it better and I switched; yet some got used (e.g. iso-language-codes).

Contribution to open source is not a waste of time.