New Developers

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Welcome![edit]

Participants of the Wikimedia Hackathon 2017

You want to work on Wikimedia code and need ideas where to start?
Wikimedia's technical community always welcomes new contributors to our projects.
Become part of a global community and help making access to free knowledge easier for everybody!

Contributing to Wikimedia is a four-step process:

  1. Choose a software project
  2. Set up your development environment
  3. Choose and solve a task (write and test your code)
  4. Submit your code changes

Some basics to know[edit]

You can skip this section if you are already used to free and open source software culture.

Wikimedia has hundreds of software projects in many different areas. (You could take a look at this diagram or check these slides if you want to get an overview.)

The maintainers of each software project are pretty free to choose the infrastructure they prefer. In general, basically all software projects have

  • a task tracking tool where software bugs and enhancement requests are reported, managed and discussed. Examples are Wikimedia Phabricator, GitHub, or Sourceforge.
  • a code repository where the source code can be "checked out" to everybody. Examples are Wikimedia Git/Gerrit, GitHub, or Sourceforge.
  • a code review tool where proposed code changes (so-called patches) get discussed and improved. Examples are Wikimedia Git/Gerrit, GitHub, or Sourceforge. Once your proposed patch is good and is merged into the code repository, your code changes will become available to everybody. (You could read more about good practices for code review here.)
  • general places for discussion of the software project and/or for receiving help and support. Those places can be mailing lists or IRC chat channels or wiki pages or other places. The exact places depend on each project.

At any point, if you run into problems or need help, please ask. If you want to ask good questions in the right places, we recommend you read the section "Feedback, questions and support".

Choose a software project[edit]

This is the recommended way to start. Choose one of the following projects and follow the project's documentation to set up your development environment, choose a task to work on, solve the task, and submit your code changes for review:

Huggle
Screenshot

An anti-vandalism desktop application for Wikimedia projects. (Read more.) Project URL https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Huggle

Kiwix
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An offline reader for Wikipedia web content. (Read more.)

  • Skills required: Java (Android app), Swift (iOS app)
  • Get in touch: Chat in #kiwixconnect on irc.freenode.net
  • Get the source code: GitHub
  • Read the documentation
  • Check the recommended tasks to work on: Android, iOS, JS on GitHub
  • Mentor(s): TBD
Screenshot

Subscribe to newsletters and publish newsletters for other wiki users. (Read more.)

Screenshot

An app for Android devices to upload your pictures to Wikimedia Commons. (Read more.)

Screenshot

A web application that supports Wikipedia education assignments, provides data and course management for instructors and students. (Read more.)

Are you a maintainer and want your project to be included in the list of software projects above? Find out more and join!

Outreach programs and single tasks[edit]

Apart from the recommended software projects above, there are more ways to choose a project or task to work on:

Wikimedia offers internships in programs such as Google Summer of Code and Outreachy.
And if you are a high school student, you can participate in Google Code-in.
Find out more.

There are many single tasks (across many software projects) which are suitable for newcomers.
However, you are more on your own here: We cannot guarantee that mentors are available or that your proposed patches will receive fast reviews.
Find out more.

Looking for additional resources?[edit]


Want to contribute something else?[edit]