“I was lucky that I met the right mentors and teachers at the right moment.” ― James Levine
Everything started from meeting with Chandan Kumar in my engineering third year. Till then I had only heard terms related to open source like github, code repositories, forking, etc. But I had never tried anything, hands on with open source contribution. I met Chandan in a Firefox club event at my college department. He was acquainted to me by Aman Sehgal. Then we had a chat of many things like using bugsahoy to find easy bugs also he asked me to ping him on IRC if I had any doubts, etc. But then college studies crept in and my regular routine began. Alas! I could not start with contribution then.
Fast forward to December 2014 i.e. my last year in engineering, when I was also learning Python for my final year project. Luckily PythonPune had its reboot under Chandan and then I started attending meetups from January 2015. Through meetups I learnt many new things and got a chance to network with people. In March 2015 first PythonPune developers’ sprint was conducted, and I selected project Salt to work on. And got my first open-source contribution.
I used to watch documentaries related to Computing where I saw people would meet share knowledge and do all sorts of fun stuff, but I couldn’t find any club or something like that, but then PythonPune came to my rescue, a place for geeks to hangout and meet new people.
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.” ― Steve Jobs
In the year 2015 Pune witnessed two major open-source conferences. First GNUnify, which happened in February, where I got to know about many open source projects like Docker, Salt to name few. This is how I was acquainted with Salt and thus chose to contribute to Salt in PythonPune March 2015 Developers’ sprint. Second conference was FUDCon, where learnt many things like DNF, Security in Open Source, networkd, etc. FUDCon left quite good impression on me regarding Red Hat and Fedora community altogether.
“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” ― Benjamin Franklin
After my college and engineering completed in June, I was now free to try things out related to opensource with full dedication. Also #dgplug training started in month of June, and knowledge started to flood in. I learnt many things in dgplug like manners and etiquette of mailing list, using IRC, python and many things that books cannot teach you. In this time I was looking for some networking project written in Python to work on and selected project Scapy. I kept working on that project, mentored for Scapy at PythonPune July meetup, conducted a workshop in PythonPune August meetup on Scapy.
“Don’t reinvent the wheel, just realign it.” ― Anthony J. D’Anjelo
Another thing that I learnt was, on dgplug when somebody was conducting a class, for posting some code snippets folks would use pastebin. One day on fedoraproject’s pastebin I found that I can post the text using APIs, so in the excitement of creating my own client, I wrote a python script, packaged it and uploaded it to pypi. But later I found out that fedora already comes with even better and sophisticated software called as fpaste. So lesson learnt was before investing your resources into creating anything from scratch just see if there is any opensource alternative to what you want, if there isn’t any create one, if there is any use it and if you want improve it.
“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” ― William Arthur Ward
Then came the best part of this journey called as PyCon India 2015, there I mentored for project Scapy and also met with all the dgplug mates. We use to meet everyday on IRC but meeting there face to face was very nice experience. At Pycon India got acquainted with Kushal very well, where he asked me to do a Scapy session after conference on IRC. Kushal is a river of knowledge, I experienced this in the conference, if you are standing next to him you will surely receive some knowledge. He has been an inspiring figure in respect of introducing more people to OpenSource world.
After PyCon India learnt about OpenStack started working on it. I chose OpenStack because, its an actively developed opensource software, rather Scapy is only being maintained. So learning opportunities in OpenStack were huge. Also openstack is an infrastructure grade project, so there many concepts utilized in infrastructure could be learnt. I have blogged about my experiences with OpenStack. One day in December got a call from Red Hat regarding the opening to work on Project Atomic, I was scheduled for two interviews, which went well, later I was told that I am selected. That’s my journey so far.
Along the way I have made some friends who have influenced me in working into open source and motivated me. Dhriti Shikhar is one of them, she is also a open source contributor, talented programmer. Even before I started anything in opensource she was already rocking, she is also my junior in college. She has also motivated her junior Rahul Bajaj to work into opensource, so great work there. There has been a great learning experience with Dhriti.
Finally I haven’t forgot to mention Chandan my mentor has always been behind me for all support, doubts, encouragement. As the start of this post mentions, I would also like to mention here that I am lucky to have such a great mentor and mentors from dgplug.
- OpenSource has helped me to learn things.
- OpenSource has allowed me to work on things I wanted with all the freedom.
- People in community are very welcoming and eager to help.
- OpenSource contribution helps you get a good job.
- Being passionate and patient are virtues to be kept.
- Look out, and you will find a mentor in Open Source community.
- dgplug is a great place to learn things.
“He that can have patience can have what he will.” ― Benjamin Franklin