Open source contributions aren’t always code. The creator of the Mastodon client Ice Cubes put out a call for a custom notification sound and just happened to see it on a rainy weekend morning, so decided to play around a bit.
I grabbed my phone and got to work. Took a few tries to find the perfect CLINK of the glass. It was a partially filled whiskey glass with two pieces of ice being dropped in, to be exact.
The sound needed editing, so I brought it into Audacity and made a few tweaks. Slowed it down, played with the pitch.
I presented a few options and forgot about it for awhile. With so many other features going in constantly, I wasn’t surprised and honestly didn’t know if it would ever make it into the app.
Today I woke up to a surprise - the first sound option made it into the latest build!
Don’t be afraid to participate - there are so many ways to be a part of something.
- Do you speak multiple languages? Contribute translations so the app can be enjoyed across the globe.
- Are you an artist? Create graphics for a marketing site or within the app.
- Update documentation - do you see a spelling mistake or some holes in a repository’s documentation? Fix it!
- Provide feedback or report issues - you don’t have to fix them - just find them and provide a report so they can be worked!
- Help out by spreading the word about a great project, answering questions you may see about it on social media.
- Donate money - most open source projects need funding to continue their work. Find their preferred contribution route (make sure it’s authentic) and pitch in what you can.
- And the obvious - write some code.
A big fear you have to get over is the initial jump into the waters. I suggest finding a welcoming community, watch for a bit, and then dip your toe into a small project.
What a great feeling to have something you built purely for fun in a creative moment being incorporated into something bigger. That’s what open source is all about, in my opinion, and I’m excited to continue contributing where I can.