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How To Become A Free Software Developer

Free Software

Published on 07 October 2011 07:08 AM EDT
Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software
6 Comments

Lennart Poettering, the Red Hat developer based out of Berlin who's responsible for key open-source projects like PulseAudio and systemd, has offered a presentation on key facts you need to know about becoming a free software developer/hacker.

Lennart was speaking at the Technical University of Berlin about "things you need to know, things you should expect and things you shouldn't expect when your are aspiring to become a successful Free Software Hacker."

Lennart has now published the slides on the Internet, which are aimed for university students and others aspiring towards contributing to Linux / open-source software.

The slides are embedded below or they can also be viewed from this link on Google Docs.

Among his points are starting with patches, "scratching your own itches", reading sources and learning to use Git, learning all the proper development and build tools, be enthusiastic and persistent and dedicated, make your code attractive, etc.

If you're interested in this topic, you will also want to see my Q&A panel from last month at XDC2011 Chicago that was with several key X.Org / Linux graphics developers about contributing to open-source projects. Many of the people on the panel began contributing to Mesa / X.Org while at university and have since been hired off by the major Linux players, etc.

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
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