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Thread: Contributing To Open Source

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    Junior Member amitection's Avatar
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    Post Contributing To Open Source

    Hello Friends,
    I am doing Java since 5 or 6 months, so i am basically a beginner in Java.
    But i have done C/C++ for like 2 years.

    I would really like to contribute to Open Source & to learn from the experts there. I know i am a beginner but i have read forums and blah blah on the net and they say that even a beginner could contribute. I signed up at GIT hub & when i see the projects there & they are quite interesting. But when i try to read the code i don't understand a single line of their code.


    Its not that i don't know anything about java. I have made my own simple text editor and am currently working on another project of my own. I know its not something very difficult but ya you can say i know a little bit about java. I am good a Data Structures & Algorithms.

    I would really appreciate if you could tell me how my approach should be towards understanding the open source code on GIThub & to start with some simple projects suggestions or if you know of a project on GIThub or any other OpenSource foundation where i would be able to understand the code & and then contribute some of my own.


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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Not really sure what you're asking. It's hard to interpret someone's admission that they "don't understand a single line of (someone else's) code" they've read, That just doesn't make sense coming from someone who's been programming for 2.5 years. Something's missing in this story.

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    amitection (May 6th, 2014)

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    Junior Member amitection's Avatar
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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Hello Sir,
    Well when i said that i don't understand a single line i literally dint mean it
    All i wanted to say was i see folders inside folders and many files and god knows what those files are for & lines of code inside those files.
    I don't know how to start where to start, maybe you could suggest me a simpler project which i could grasp & later on as time passes & i learn more i could try for the difficult ones. :0

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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Sounds more like you get overwhelmed and don't know where to begin. For larger projects, becoming familiar with the infrastructure is not immediate for anyone. One avenue which might help you comprehend the inner workings are to step through the source code line by line. Say, as an example, for a stand-alone program find the main method and step through the code line by line. A debugger might help by allowing you to set breakpoints and step through and into methods at runtime. Of course starting with smaller projects would make becoming familiar easier - the best way is to find projects that interest you and go from there.

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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Shameless self-promotion: I have a project on Github called SvgExe: https://github.com/KevinWorkman/SvgExe

    This project is relatively small (especially compared to big projects like Processing or libGDX), so it should be pretty easy to get into (in fact that was one of my goals). Despite it not being very large, it's become a contributed tool to Processing (which means you can get it straight from the Processing editor) and is one of the standard ways to deploy Processing projects: Tools \ Processing.org

    I've also been adding feature requests to the project, which you can peruse here: https://github.com/KevinWorkman/SvgE...ues?state=open

    Note that not every feature request is a code issue, so if you aren't comfortable diving into the code, you can start smaller by doing equally useful things like contributing to the wiki on github.
    Useful links: How to Ask Questions the Smart Way | Use Code Tags | Java Tutorials
    Static Void Games - Play indie games, learn from game tutorials and source code, upload your own games!

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    Junior Member amitection's Avatar
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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Well i don't know how to thank both of you. These answers have finally ended my turmoil. I was searching for how to and where to start contributing to open source for weeks and finally I think the search is over now.
    Thanks a Lot!!!

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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Quote Originally Posted by amitection View Post
    Well i don't know how to thank both of you. These answers have finally ended my turmoil. I was searching for how to and where to start contributing to open source for weeks and finally I think the search is over now.
    Thanks a Lot!!!


    I really hope you are still on the forums and see this...

    I was curious, what exactly did you do to "end your turmoil" ?

    You see, I came onto this forum because I am in the same exact position that you were once in. I have a large amount of programming experience but I have absolutely no open source experience yet I want to start somewhere. I tried looking at projects at places like GitHub but I was also overwhelmed and didnt know what to do or where to start.

    So I am wondering, do you have any suggestions? What did you do?

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    Junior Member amitection's Avatar
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    Default Re: Contributing To Open Source

    Quote Originally Posted by Midgar77 View Post
    I really hope you are still on the forums and see this...

    I was curious, what exactly did you do to "end your turmoil" ?

    You see, I came onto this forum because I am in the same exact position that you were once in. I have a large amount of programming experience but I have absolutely no open source experience yet I want to start somewhere. I tried looking at projects at places like GitHub but I was also overwhelmed and didnt know what to do or where to start.

    So I am wondering, do you have any suggestions? What did you do?


    Like you said that you have a tremendous amount of experience. Then it should not be difficult for you to understand the projects on GIT hub.
    KevinWorkman has posted a link of one of his projects in one of the posts above.
    https://github.com/KevinWorkman/SvgExe

    Well it actually didn't end my turmoil
    It was difficult to understand the code. The first thing "Self Extracting Jars" I dint't get what it means. So u can there was no use of reading the code.

    Then later i thought i should have a look on the source code of the simple open source applications i use.
    For example: There is this Garena Auto Joiner Application. I use to join rooms on Garena. The application was pretty simple so i thought why not have a look at the source code.

    At first it was difficult to understand. But later on after spending quite some time reading the code i finally understood it. Though not the full code but 70 - 80% of the code. I didnt contribute anything cause there was nothing left to be done. It was all perfect "according to me." But that gave me an insight and i knew how the things were supposed to be done.

    I started with a project with my friend who is also interested in programming. So I am still trying to complete it. Its about 30 - 40% complete. It will host it on GIT Hub in a few days so even others could join me. It will also give me some experience on how the things are done on Open Source sites. After that is done, I will look some "SIMPLE" Open Source applications that i have and then will start contributing.

    So the whole point is
    Look for some simple open Source applications on your PC. Search for its code on open source sites and if you find it. And then you know the rest. Read it. Understand it. Contribute!
    ăϻі

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