My First Hacktoberfest

This October marked my first venture into open source via Hacktoberfest, an annual open source contribution challenge and celebration led by Digital Ocean in collaboration with DEV.

The concept of open source has always intriged me. From my admittidly rather limited exposure to software, collective development seems to produce more accessible, flexible, and reliable software. Primarily because the development process engages a broad population of developers with different strengths, ideas, and views. Additionally though, open source software is open to any stakeholder which allows users or non-technical folk to explore and contribute. Collectively we can produce more responsive, better tailored, and more interesting software.

Participation in Hacktoberfest had been on my to-do list for a few years now. I'd refrained from joining in due to intimidation. The organizers had always advertised and structured it as a beginner-friendly event so the hesitation was entirely due to my own confidence. This year I had been feeling more like a developer than ever before. Not just do to greater internship experience because my own side projects had become increasingly sophisticated.

Throughout the month I discovered some incredibly unqiue and innovate projects. While I was not ready to contribute to all the projects that peaked my interest, I did star a great number of repos that I will hopefully be able to lend a hand to soon. I was able to get four non-trivial pull requests merged and two additional pull requests that had functioned as my introduction to the process of contributing.

As the month came to a close I was able to reflect on Hacktoberfest. It is an excellet introduction to open source not only because the event is structured well but because the developer community is quite welcoming to newcomers. It also serves as a time for experienced developers to discover new projects and learn new skills. Thank you Digital Ocean and DEV for this year's Hactoberfest, here's to many more!