Developers
developers

[Public Lab software](#Projects), including this website, is written collaboratively by a community of contributors. _Above: a diagram of the various [Public Lab software projects](https://publiclab.org/notes/warren/05-22-2019/draft-of-a-public-lab-software-roadmap-comments-welcome)_ **We're so happy to meet you! This page is to welcome new contributors.** We especially welcome contributions from people from **groups under-represented** in free and open source software! Our community aspires to be a respectful place. Please read and abide by our [Code of Conduct](/conduct). ## How to contribute **We are actively seeking contributors**, so please **[visit our welcome page](https://code.publiclab.org#r=all)** and ask about how you can help keep these free and open source software projects working (and improving) for our thousands of community members! ### First-timers only If this is your first time, **welcome**! We're so happy to meet you! This page is to welcome new contributors looking to get involved in coding with Public Lab. We especially welcome contributions from people from groups *underrepresented in free and open source software!* Please see [our welcome page](https://code.publiclab.org). If you'd like to quickly jump into an issue, see the following list for any available [first-timers-only issues](https://code.publiclab.org#r=all): Read more about our [software outreach work here](/software-outreach)! **** ## Activities [activities:software] **** ## Questions [questions:software] **** ## Projects For an in-depth overview of all PL software projects, see https://publiclab.org/software-overview Project Description Source Code PublicLab.org Ruby on Rails This very website!PublicLab.org - a collaborative knowledge-exchange platform. github:publiclab/plots2 MapKnitter Ruby on Rails Assemble aerial images into maps. github:publiclab/mapknitter Spectral Workbench Ruby on Rails Material analysis using DIY spectrometry. JavaScript core on GitHub github:spectral-workbench PublicLab.Editor JavaScript A general purpose, JS/Bootstrap UI framework for rich text posting, with an author-friendly, minimal, mobile/desktop interface. github:publiclab/PublicLab.Editor Leaflet.DistortableImage JavaScript Leaflet plugin built for MapKnitter. Enables images to be distorted. github:publiclab/Leaflet.DistortableImage Leaflet.BlurredLocation JavaScript A Leaflet-based interface for selecting a "blurred" or low-resolution location, to preserve privacy github:publiclab/leaflet-blurred-location WebJack JavaScript a JavaScript library that uses an audio software modem to communicate with an Arduino via a headphone jack github:publiclab/webjack ImageSequencer JavaScript/Node.js Prototype sequential image processing system, inspired by storyboards github:publiclab/image-sequencer Infragram JavaScript Analyze plant health with infrared imagery. github:publiclab/infragram Public Lab is on Github at: https://github.com/publiclab ## First time contributors New to open source/free software? Here are some resources to get you started: Our welcome page for newcomers looking to get involved in coding: https://code.publiclab.org#r=all ### Resources #### Getting started * http://www.firsttimersonly.com/ * A very in-depth guide: https://app.egghead.io/playlists/how-to-contribute-to-an-open-source-project-on-github * https://guides.github.com/activities/contributing-to-open-source/ #### Setup * Lots on Ruby, Rails, databases and more: https://www.theodinproject.com/courses #### Pull requests * https://www.freecodecamp.org/news/how-to-make-your-first-pull-request-on-github-3/ * the basic GitHub Flow workflow: https://guides.github.com/introduction/flow/ #### Git * Rebasing step by step: https://thinkup.readthedocs.io/en/latest/contribute/developers/devfromsource.html#workflow-diagram * guidance on rebasing: https://www.atlassian.com/git/tutorials/merging-vs-rebasing * revert a single file to a specific revision in Git: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/215718/reset-or-revert-a-specific-file-to-a-specific-revision-using-git * @warren: I've found if I get in real trouble rebasing, sometimes I'll try to squash my feature branch commits /without rebasing/ before then rebasing just one commit: https://gist.github.com/n00neimp0rtant/9515611 **** ### Contributing for non-coders Not interested (or not yet interested) in coding, but still want to help out? Have a project you really need to get your work done, and trying to encourage coders to tackle it? You can still help out; in fact, **helping to clearly describe and document problems and new feature proposals is at least as important as writing the code itself**. When creating or editing an issue, try to: 1. Clearly describe the problem, linking to pages where it can be observed, or where a new feature might live. Include screenshots to be very specific! 2. (for bugs) If you don't know the problem, do what you can to help others narrow it down: provide contextual information like your browser, OS, and what you were doing when it happened. Did it used to work? Does it still, but only sometimes? Help them reproduce it! 3. Propose a solution. Whether or not you code, describing what **should** or **could** happen, or even what you expected to happen is always helpful to someone looking to fix it. This can be as simple as "It should show a notification." or "There should be a way to hide it." Once an issue is well documented, we can tag it with `help-wanted` to get the word out that we're looking for someone to try to fix it. If you're not sure if it's ready, ask [on the plots-dev list](#Sign+up) Finally, if your issue is well documented, try to get involved in some outreach to new contributors to match someone with the project! Tell them what it'll help you achieve and why you'd appreciate help. And coordinate with the [plots-dev discussion list](#Sign+up) to get the word out. **** ### Preparing issues for newcomers Related to the above, even if you are a coder, we need help "rolling out the red carpet" (as the [Hoodie project](http://hood.ie) calls it) for new contributors, to grow our contributor base. The steps in [Contributing for non-coders](#Contributing+for+non-coders) are a good starting point, but as a coder, you can also deep-link to the relevant lines of code, with Github links and pointers like: > Then, the keyword `:medium` in JavaScript on this line must be changed to `:large` too: https://github.com/publiclab/plots2/blob/main/app/assets/javascripts/dragdrop.js#L64 -- does that make sense to you? This is especially great for attracting coders who are not only new to our code but new to coding in general! Learn more about [how to make a good `first-timers-only` issue here](/notes/warren/10-31-2016/create-a-welcoming-first-timers-only-issue-to-invite-new-software-contributors). **** ## Reviewers Mentoring for [Summer of Code programs](/gsoc) has a lot in common with being a software "reviewer" with Public Lab throughout the year; to welcome and support our community of coders, we need to: * always be kind and respectful! (remember our [Code of Conduct!](/conduct)) * help people to become better coders and don't make them feel bad * encourage people to open a PR with their work even if it's not finished * go through recent PRs to help people who are stuck * use emojis! Some specific things you can do: * add links to relevant lines of code to help people see where to start, or for an example of a similar feature * suggest writing a test to *protect your work* from future issues * tag things as `break-me-up` if it's possible to do a project in separate simpler parts Here are some guides to different ways to help others contribute: ## Summer of Code Activities [activities:soc] **** ## Summer of Code Lots of development on Public Lab software happens as part of the [Rails Girls Summer of Code and Google Summer of Code programs](/soc), that latter supported generously by Google. Looking at the [GSoC Ideas list](/wiki/gsoc-ideas) is a great place to find projects which our community really needs to get done, whether or not you're in the program. Read more at our [Summer of Code page](/soc)! **** ### Miscellaneous Note that we encourage the use of external libraries -- it's certainly easier and more maintainable than developing our own code -- but we also encourage very clear links to such libraries' documentation, source code, and of course, attribution. ...


Author Comment Last activity Moderation
warren "Thanks for the input, Dave. I had another idea -- we've talked about asking for things after someone presses publish (like, for example, tagging) ..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
stoft "Looks like a good starting point. For the moment, I'd first suggest incorporating some form of sub-topic list for the 'Body/Content' section which ..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
pdhixenbaugh "Thanks for all your responses! They are all exciting! Especially, even publishing as a draft and soliciting input/review as discussed in the comme..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
warren " reuse of popular tags for sure -- hoping to have a "recent" or "popular" tags, and maybe eventually a "suggested" tags, though that's technically..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
pdhixenbaugh "Thoughts on tags: some sites (Stack Exchange, ArcGis, etc.,) require a minimum number of tags, and also encourage reuse of popular tags. This ensur..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
gretchengehrke "@warren, I think that's great. Would there be a place to explain (maybe on the "How to write a research note" wiki) that you can make a unique seri..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
warren "Super duper, thanks Gretchen! Great ideas. I'll respond to the Rich Editor one for now, since design for that has begun: Can we power-tag researc..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
gretchengehrke "@warren, this is great. Thanks! I'm also interested in: (1) both in-line and post-text commenting (like how we comment on research notes). (2) bein..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
warren "Thanks all for your input! Good idea on movement from note => wiki -- and on authorship metadata. We should also do more generally to make wiki..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
mathew "I'm interested in the interconnection between research notes and wikis. Currently only an author or admin can move markdown from a note to a wiki ..." | Read more » about 8 years ago
viechdokter "Hi Warren, this is great news. As a newby with the PLab spectrometry I find it still a bit difficult to navigate on the spectrometry pages. (Where..." | Read more » over 8 years ago
warren "Thanks, @stevie. I actually added a section to our developers page outlining some of these suggestions (mostly from Gregor and Hoodie) to encourage..." | Read more » over 8 years ago
stevie "I love this idea! Thanks for sharing. " | Read more » over 8 years ago
warren "Also @liz @stevie this post was really good for helping me make some of our issues easier for first-timers to jump into: http://hood.ie/blog/starte..." | Read more » over 8 years ago
warren "I used some of Gregor's material to respond to this post on the Google Summer of Code discuss list, from a student who's new to open source: https:..." | Read more » over 8 years ago
warren "Also https://egghead.io/series/how-to-contribute-to-an-open-source-project-on-github " | Read more » over 8 years ago
warren "@liz and @stevie you gotta check out this great set of resources on developer outreach!!! " | Read more » over 8 years ago
patcoyle "Nice talk. " | Read more » over 9 years ago
liz "this is a great presentation! we can use it for developer outreach at Open Source Bridge in Portland this summer! @mathew @natalie @becki " | Read more » over 9 years ago
navonod "Follow-up: I was able to solve the first problem by allowing the framework to instantiate the icon for me - i.e. only worrying about creating a L...." | Read more » over 9 years ago
navonod "@justin - Many thanks for the great efforts you made in getting leaflet.illustrate to this point. I have 2 implementation questions, if you don't m..." | Read more » over 9 years ago
patcoyle "Jeff, Nice quick walk through video. Thanks again to the whole team. " | Read more » over 9 years ago
warren "Hi, @geraldmc - I guess I have a slight preference for using PublicLab.org wikis, but I'm relatively agnostic. I tend to think that putting more do..." | Read more » over 9 years ago
geraldmc "I had a quick look and noticed we don't maintain wikis for any of the PL repositories. Any opinion for or against using Github wikis? A README is ..." | Read more » over 9 years ago