Great writeup from Tim Bray about his experiences contributing to an open source project. Tl,dr: it's getting a lot easier, but you still need a lot of assumed knowledge (or helpful devs with time on their hands) to become a contributor. To get more people involved in open source development, we need to continue reducing the barriers to entry for new contributors. For better or worse, this is is the age of one-click cloud deployment and code generation tools; developers have limited time on their hands, and their attention is likely to go where it is easiest for them to make a contribution.
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