The day my Raspberry Pi failed at faking my GitHub activity

It started as an experiment around this time of the year in 2016, and today I can finally show my 99.7% busy, “certified” hard worker, lifeless GitHub bar.

What was this experiment about?

In case you haven’t guessed already, it’s mostly about recruiters and how badly our Open Source activity as developers can be wrongly evaluated via some basic statistics anyone can fake just with an old RPi 1 hanging around.

Add daily pushes to private or random public repositories and that’s it.

You’ll soon probably receive more offers than usual with recruiters “coming across” your profile ’cause you’re hard worker and “yada-yada”.

The amount of GitHub commits means absolutely nothing!

It’s not just because these are easy to fake; basing any developer evaluation on the amount of commits is as useless as the LOC (Line Of Code) metric.

A developer that does one good, well tested, problem-solving commit per week day, is 10X valuable than a developer that just “horse-push” whatever code change happened in the last hour.

A developer that pushes one feature that won’t require any maintenance for months, is 10X valuable than a developer that pushes a broken feature and pushes other 5 times to fix issues maybe already landed in production.

A developer that experiments some architecture, spending the right amount of needed time to come up with a proper solution to a problem, won’t ever be measured like “the monkey pushing git-bananas” at the adjacent desk.

These are the only “10x developers” you, dear recruiters and managers, are looking for, but you’re using a meaningless metric like the amount and frequency of commits to judge people skills, devotion, and professionalism.

Not only GitHub

I’ve also worked with excellent developers that have family, or other interests, and not much extra time to work on Open Source projects at all, and they’re all thousand times more valuable than this little Raspberry Pi connected 24/7.

It’s not that I don’t appreciate the work this little friend is doing for me, it’s just that its life is about doing exactly that, working 24/7 on more or less exciting tasks and nothing else.

But thanks gosh developers love to do many other things too!

They love to have a life.