Drive-through contributors: they drop by; they fix their problem; they leave. We’d prefer that these people stick around and join the community, but a good drive-through contribution adds value to your project. A strong argument can be made that the more drive-through contributors your project has, the healthier the project process and ecosystem. It shows that you’ve set up a process which is easy to understand, easy to follow, and which makes it easy to contribute—a situation that increases the opportunities for new contributors to become new community members. VM Brasseur explores methods for maximizing drive-through contributions and suggests using the number of drive-through contributions as a metric for project health.
VM Brasseur (aka Vicky) is a manager of technical people, projects, processes, products, and businesses. Currently, she is a senior engineering manager at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, serving a team of developers 100 percent dedicated to upstream open source development on OpenStack. In her nearly 20 years in the tech industry, Vicky has been an analyst, programmer, product manager, software engineering manager, technical business consultant, and director of software engineering. She is a winner of the 2014 Perl White Camel Award and a winner of the 2016 O’Reilly Open Source Award. Vicky occasionally blogs.
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