Hacktoberfest 04: Last PR and Final Thoughts

André Rosa
Oct 27 · 2 min read

For the last Hacktoberfest Pull Request I was planning to work on something bigger, I forked and cloned the MilSymbol (https://github.com/spatialillusions/milsymbol), a library to create military symbols for apps such the ones that run Leaflet. Unfortunately, I spent so much time trying to run and fix one of the issues that I ended running out of time. I plan to go back to this library again because this library solves a lot of problems I faced in the past. How to dynamically create SVG icons in a map.

As time ran out, I went after another issue that I need in my everyday work, bash scripts, I found a repo that needed some upgrades in a bash script, something I could do without much hassle. The problem was to update a script originally made for Mac OS to Linux. The repo is here (https://github.com/noyoshi/summary) with the issue (https://github.com/noyoshi/summary/issues/2) and PR (https://github.com/noyoshi/summary/pull/5).

The Hacktoberfest experience allowed me work with Python and JavaScript and allowed me to put in practice my git skills. However, I found some problems when working with Open Source projects:

1) Find viable issues — Lots of problems are beyond my level of knowledge or simply bad explained for someone new. Additionally, most issues were not well documented, therefore it was hard to grasp the meaning of acronyms and words.

2) Make the code run — Twice I found myself in the situation where I was unable to run the cloned repo. I even tested codes in Windows and Linux and nothing. The reason is that there was not enough information to help a new developer to install dependencies. Even when the issue looked “easy” the installation could become the core of the problem.

On the other hand, I had some good experiences:

1) The community — It is always nice to deal with passionate people who wants to see their projects advance. I had some good experiences with maintainers who asked about my proposed changes and forced me to find good explanations for the solutions I made.

2) GiHub — I am very happy with the opportunity to work and help a little bit new people and their projects. Git is an amazing product that I used so little mainly because I never took some minutes to really understand how it works.

3) Finally, I feel that I became a better professional with the experience of participating in the DigitalOcean Hacktoberfest with the rest of my OSD600 class. I will proudly use my Hacktoberfest T-Shirt.

André Rosa

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Computer Programmer