Before diving into my personal story of open-source contribution. Let me get you all on the same page.
What is an open source?
"Open source refers to a type of software that is released under a license that allows the source code to be freely accessed, used, and modified by anyone. This means that anyone can view, modify, and distribute the source code for an open source software program, as long as they follow the terms of the license."
If you currently search on google, you will find the definition filled with technical words as above. If I have to explain it. Then I would explain open source like this:
An open source is a project/software whose source code is public and you can use that code to learn, customize and earn without getting into trouble. By trouble, I mean legal trouble.
Why should we contribute to open source?
There are a number of reasons why you might want to contribute to open-source projects. For one, contributing to open source can be a rewarding and fulfilling experience, as it allows you to contribute to projects that are important to you and make a positive impact on the world.
Additionally, contributing to open source can also be a great way to learn and develop new skills. By collaborating with other volunteers on open source projects, you can learn from their expertise and experience, and gain valuable knowledge and experience in areas such as software development, project management, and collaboration.
Another reason to contribute to open source is that it can help to build your professional reputation and network. Many open source projects are highly visible and well-respected in the tech industry, and participating in these projects can help to showcase your skills and expertise to potential employers and colleagues.
Furthermore, contributing to open source can also provide opportunities for professional growth and advancement. Many open source projects offer leadership and mentorship opportunities, which can help you to develop your skills and advance your career.
In summary, contributing to open source projects can be a rewarding and valuable experience that offers a range of benefits, including the opportunity to learn, grow, and make a positive impact on the world.
My story of open source contribution
The first time I contributed to open source is during hacktoberfest 2022. If you don't know about hacktoberfest then it is a global event where developers across the world, no matter if they are experienced or just starting out contribute to open-source projects via code or no code. And every year, it is conducted by the digital ocean.
I started out with some open-source projects. I remember I opened my first-ever pull request in a repository that wasn't super popular. It was a weather app. And the thing I did over there was, I changed the default city of the app and made it display the weather about that city.
And there was another project, I think it was something called 'TextUtils'. It was a web application made in react that featured all of the operations we can perform with text inside of a browser. For example:
I actually added a paste from the clipboard button there. Yes, it worked. And when I opened it up on firefox, the app crashed and I opened up the console, I found an error.
And that right there I opened up the first issue. I opened up the pull request with the paste button implemented and went to sleep. The next day I found out the maintainer of the repository wanted to solve the bug and she asked if I can solve the bug. I agreed and I was assigned the bug. I tried hard to fix it only to realize that SpeechRecognition isn't supported in Firefox. Then I just remove the feature on firefox. And yes the bug was fixed.
After that, I continued contributing to some more projects and started opening up issues in the open-source projects that I actually use like material UI.
To conclude my whole experience, I can say that collaborating on some projects that have different coding standards and that have a huge impact on developer society is a big opportunity. Also, the real perk that comes when engaging with an open-source community is awesome.
And at last, I want to show my contribution graph for 2022 where you see a huge spike after October.
Copying text on the clipboard
Pasting text from the clipboard
Changing the case of the string
Using speech recognition to take input
Text to speech