Analyzing First Contributions on GitHub: What do Newcomers do.

Authors: Vikram N Subramanian Ifraz Rehman Meiyappan Nagappan Raula Gaikovina Kula

Venue: IEEESW   IEEE Software, 2020

Year: 2020

Abstract: The popularity of Open Source Software(OSS) is at an all-time high and for it to remain so it is vital for new developers to continually join and contribute to the OSS community. In this paper, to better understand the first time contributor, we study the characteristics of the first pull request(PR) made to an OSS project by developers. We mine GitHub for the first OSS PR of 3501 developers to study certain characteristics of PRs like size and nature of change. We find that PRs were a mixture of trivial and non-trivial changes. Studying a smaller sample, we find that 47% of all changes were bug fixes, 35% of changes added new features and 13.25% of changes changed documentation. By using the data presented, OSS moderators can organize their project's issue-tracker to attract more developers and first-timers can learn from other first-timers and understand what they should focus on.


    author = "Vikram N Subramanian and Ifraz Rehman and Meiyappan Nagappan and Raula Gaikovina Kula",
    title = "Analyzing First Contributions on GitHub: What do Newcomers do.",
    year = "2020",
    journal = "IEEE Software"

Plain Text:

Vikram N Subramanian, Ifraz Rehman, Meiyappan Nagappan, and Raula Gaikovina Kula, "Analyzing First Contributions on GitHub: What do Newcomers do.," IEEE Software