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From Simon Kitching <s_kitch...@paradise.net.nz>
Subject Re: new joinee!!
Date Thu, 06 Jan 2005 15:35:18 GMT
On Thu, 2005-01-06 at 14:00 +1100, ankur.kumar@axa.com.au wrote:
> Hi Guys,
> 
> I just joined this community and I would like to contribute also, but not 
> sure how to start.
> 
> If there is any piece of work, please let me know.

Hi Ankur,

Welcome to jakarta commons.

Regarding "projects to work on", you will find commons a bit different
from other open-source projects, mostly because "commons" isn't actually
a project at all; it's a collection of (mostly unrelated) useful
libraries.

Because of this, commons isn't really about completing some standard
API, or implementing some grand project design. Instead, development is
much more driven by specific needs people have in their day-to-day work
(open-source or commercial). And in general, code is not added to
commons unless there is going to be at least one immediate user of that
code; putting stuff in "because it might be useful sometime" is not
generally regarded enthusiastically here at jakarta-commons.

So in short, you may or may not get a response to your offer of help.

Please don't be disappointed if no-one suggests something. Instead, get
familiar with the existing commons libraries (and while you're doing
that by reading javadoc and unit tests, patches for those unit tests,
javadoc, etc would be very welcome). After that, look at the other
projects you are currently working on; are there pieces of code in there
that fit well with one of the commons libs and are likely to be useful
to many different programs? If so, then that is a good time to post a
proposal in commons-dev to enhance that commons library, but only if you
also intend to migrate that project to *use* the commons code.

One other place to look is in the bugzilla/Jira bugtracker system, which
lists both bugs and requested enhancements. But if you are thinking
about helping out with one of these, I suggest posting on the list first
before spending too much time on one; sometimes enhancement requests
suggest things the commons maintainers for the project don't agree with,
or would prefer to tackle in a different manner.

In general, I believe the way developers generally end up involved here
is because they are *users* of a commons library, and need extra
functionality or need bugs fixed, contribute for that specific purpose,
and just never leave :-). Alternatively, many have developed code that
they found themselves using in multiple projects, offered to move that
useful code to a commons library, and remained here as one of the
maintainers. 

So once you're familiar with commons, it might be better to get involved
with some other project that interests you and which *uses* a commons
lib (eg tomcat, slide, maven, jedit, ...). Those projects generally do
have long lists of "required features" or "unfixed bugs" that are
awaiting keen developers. And you may then find that some of those
bugs/features are best implemented by fixing/enhancing a commons
library!

Regards,

Simon



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