1 Month of Contribution for RAILS GIRLS SUMMER OF CODE

Ananya Agrawal
Published in
5 min readApr 14, 2018



My introduction to opensource community happened through opencode which helped me to slowly get comfortable with git and basic web development.

I got to hear about Rails Girls Summer of Code(which helps empower women who code) in January for the very first time. It is basically a GSOC(Google Summer of Code) exclusively for girls. This organisation was initially started for rails(ruby) but now it accepts projects in all language.

Being a first year and having a very limited set of skills I was just too scared to apply for the same, but thanks to my seniors to encourage me to apply and to give me the confidence that I could always contact them for help (later they became my mentors for RGSOC). Thus, I finally decided to give it a shot though I was so blank about what I could or could not do.

RGSOC works in pair. So now I was in a need to find someone to be my partner in crime(code). My search ended when I met a senior of mine in third year named Neha Kandpal.

Now I had the motivation to participate, teammate and all that was needed now was to find two mentors. Gautham Santhosh and Saptak Sengupta were kind enough to mentor us.


The very first step was to write an application.
If you ever had written any application then you will be knowing how hard it is to start. We procrastinated a lot. Everyday we discussed on what to write but the paper was always blank.

After thinking a lot on content finally we finished writing it and it was terrible. And we knew it. So now after having a clear idea of how to write a bad application, finally we started from the very basic to write the application again. And yeah, this time it was pretty decent.

The projects we applied for were:

  1. Karrot (Foodsaving Worldwide)
  2. Cosmos Search

The reason why we decided to contribute to karrot was its idea itself. The project is meant to provide web support to food saving groups worldwide. I was really interested to witness how technology can help solve a very basic problem. Moreover, the project is based on Python thus perfectly suits my and Neha’s previous experience and interest.

The objective of the second project i.e Cosmos Search is to minimize the time we spend searching and increase the time we spend learning. Being a college student this was something I could relate to very well. I wanted to contribute to a project that was aiming to revolutionise the way we interact with code and flourish discussion as the primary source of learning.

So now when I had everything required to submit the application i.e a brilliant teammate, helping mentors, projects to contribute and an application in hand I was ready to apply.

To give it a start and to get ourselves familiar with the project we both decided to start contributing to karrot(it was our first preference). And with this, we both started to have a look at the issues and at the website as a whole.


  1. The very first issue I decided to give a short was to upgrade the version of Font Awesome Icons used in the website(currently was using version 4 and was upgraded to version 5).

To solve the issue all I need was to upgrade the version and then change class names which are modified in the new version. But it wasn’t that simple as it seemed to be. Upgrading the version was a cake walk but same doesn’t happen while changing class names. I had to check each and every icon class and then upgrade it. While doing so sometimes I ended up changing to a wrong name or to left it unchanged which leads to the creation of bugs. But yeah, at the end it was completed and merged(was my first merged pr).

2. The second issue I worked on was to show profile picture in the search result.

The Issue was meant to add user’s profile picture in the search result. The main problem I faced while doing this was to generate random image displayed as profile picture when there is an absence of the same. To incorporate this I was supposed to write the whole piece of code again. Currently, I am working on it and have an open pr in this respect.

3. This issue was based on a bug in the website. There is a feedback form on the website in which weight was made mandatory. This issue was based to make entering weight optional.

I was able to complete the issue but then it was appearing like it is a bug that weight is coming as “?” so now I had to make a toggle button to make it work.

These are some of the issues my teammate Neha worked on :

By contributing in Karrot I got a good idea about vue.js and python. Moreover this 1 month of contribution made me more comfortable in using git commands. I got experience of applying code to real project and to contribute in a professional way.

Though we didn’t get the selection mail but still this 1 month of contribution gave me experience and knowledge to cherish forever.

At the end I want to thank my mentors and maintainers of karrot( Tilmann Becker and Lukas Gebhard) for there guidance and help which made me learn a lot in such a short period of time.

Thank you for reading. If you like the article give it a clap 👏

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I am Ananya Agrawal. I am currently working as a software engineer at Gojek. I am working on building Feature Monkey a customer feedback tracker that can be used for feature request tracking, internal feedback, public roadmap, etc.
Reach out to me over https://twitter.com/AgrawalAnanyaa.