Learn by Contributing to Open Source

Presented by Joshua Simmons
Tuesday 11:40 a.m.–12:25 p.m. in Collaborative Lecture Theatre CB11.00.405
Target audience: Community


Josh started coding in the late 90’s and began hacking things together professionally as a freelancer in 2002. It wasn’t until 2013 that he started making contributions to open source software… suffice it to say, after years of learning slowly, editing in production, and eschewing tests, he began learning very very quickly. Contributing to open source is an excellent way to get real world software development experience while benefiting the common good. However, making that first contribution is difficult even for people who are confident in their skills. In this talk Josh will discuss programs and resources for getting started in open source, as well as highlight open source projects that are great for newcomers. Students and junior developers will leave with a clear idea of where to start, instructors and community leaders will be equipped to guide newbies, and project maintainers will be able to refine their projects to be more welcoming and supportive of newcomers.

Presented by

Joshua Simmons

Josh is a web developer and open source advocate with a penchant for armchair philosophy who has spoken at conferences around the world on community building, open source, and web technology. He worked as a freelancer and startup CEO before discovering his love of community work as a meetup organizer and professional community manager. Now he is a member of the Google Open Source outreach team where he manages the Google Open Source Blog and automates all of the things. Josh also serves as a volunteer CFO and board member for the Open Source Initiative. He uses his copious free time to organize North Bay Python and advise Libraries.io and Utah Open Source on community and outreach.