Give It Back – Getting Involved in Open Source

What runs Where do the servers come from and who runs them? Who writes the website? How about the docs, the tests (that are written in PHP) Who takes care of bug and pull request triage? The answer is – VOLUNTEERS There's a lot to running a large successful open source project besides just dealing with the source code. There's also a lot to deal with politically and people are often amazed when they offer to rewrite the core of something and the current users flame them out of existence. Learn ways you can help up and get involved with open source (even touching C or fighting with toxic mailing lists) and learn how it can help your career and your people skills. Page

by Elizabeth Smith @auroraeosrose

I am glad this talk was given as a keynote rather than a regular session. This content is important for all developers to hear, not just the PHP community. I think it would have been better to have this keynote in the morning rather than as the last session to make sure more people were in attendance. Elizabeth was just as engaging in this talk as she was in her session on extensions, though I would suggest the be careful to avoid comments that may be seen as condescending or overly judgmental. Calling someone a “terrible human being” for example. Also, while I think it is a good message to this audience to “ignore the drama” it would be nice to hear that effort is being made to reduce the drama if you want people to contribute to PHP specifically. To me drama = instability. Overall the slides were great and I would definitely attend another talk by Elizabeth.

My notes from this talk can be found below:

  • Richard Stallman – father of free software, catalyst for open source, really smart guy, “terrible human being”
  • free software movement
  • in a world where all software is closed source nothing will get better.
  • the cathedral & the bazaar by Eric S. Raymond
  • in 1998 the Mozzila foundation released their software to the public
  • open source software came from Eric Raymond and friend
  • – open source initiative
  • problem for the future – die-off of gurus, knowledge transfer
  • freedom isn't free – open source will die without community
  • businesses that make open source software and don't give anything back are stealing
  • Give 15 minutes a day – not coding but contributing in other ways
  • nomadphp – online user group
  • answer questions, write/update documentation
  • ignore the drama
  • irc – #phpmentoring, #phpinternals