DEV Community


What are some newbie-friendly OSS projects to learn from?

_mascot6699 profile image Umang Shukla ・1 min read

Discussion (14)

Editor guide
jesseditson profile image
Jesse Ditson

This blog post has some really good guidance both for maintainers and contributors:

and folks inspired by it tag here:

There's a cool twitter account that posts good first time PRs here:

Ember has a "Good for new Contributors" label (I think this is the first repo I saw this on):

Finally, our very own Noms (the db we work on at Attic) has a GoodFirstBug label:

heytanmay profile image
Tanmay Khandelwal • Edited

You can add a language filter too in your Github issues search query:

tombyrer profile image
Tom Byrer

Well documented, each function is it's own file now, very descriptive & not cryptic variable names, plus jdalton is patient with bug reporters & is a lib many devs use every week.

codemouse92 profile image
Jason C. McDonald • Edited

At the risk of shameless self-promotion, I'd like to mention that my company works very hard to make all our open source projects easy to learn from and get involved with. The most mature project so far, PawLIB, is heavily documented and intent-commented, and contains some rather ambitious code that is fun to read, chew on, and improve.

albogdano profile image
Alex Bogdanovski

I'd like to invite all of you who are into web development with Java, to check out Scoold:

It's a lightweight Stack Overflow clone - just 4000 lines of code. I'm really friendly towards new devs and you can find me on Gitter.

kaydacode profile image
Kim Arnett 

Shameless Plug :)

I did an intro to iOS (Swift) talk and uploaded a simple example project for people to play with:

There's also an intro to Arduino project:

For me, I learn best by taking something that works and changing it/breaking it / fixing it. So I wanted to provide something simple for others to play in as well :)

janux_de profile image
Jan Mewes

OpenMRS seems to be a newbie-friendly OSS project.

E.g., they are participating in the Google Summer of Code where young developers are supported to develop real-world features with the help of mentors. See projects of this year:

They also have a nice developer guide and the remarks on one pull request I had a look at a few month ago where very friendly towards someone who seemed to be on beginner skill-level.

Developer Guide:


Here they are listing opportunities for contributions:

azizhk110 profile image
Aziz Khambati

Just go through the annotated source code of underscore and see how the various helper functions are implemented. Gives you deep insights on Javascript and little things in it.

_mascot6699 profile image
Umang Shukla Author • Edited

Few organisation from personal experience and my twitter feed.

All of these are web development type of stuff but are cause oriented and follow good release cycles and have great support. But what if you want to learn more backend oriented stuff?

trishul profile image
Built on react - look for label good-first-bugs

lpatmo profile image
peterdavehello profile image
ben profile image
Ben Halpern • Edited

Some projects reserve "first-timers-only" issues. Here's some more info:

jorinvo profile image

No specific project, but my advice would be to pick a smaller project.
It's less scary, the maintainers might have more time to help you and often there are more undiscovered issues to be found.