Open-Source at Softwire

4 September 2015, by

Here at Softwire, we’re pretty keen on open-source. A huge amount of the work we do day to day depends on the community-developed tools that power the ecosystems around languages like Java, C# and JavaScript.

Sometime it’s nice to give back. There’s the lovely warm feeling of Doing Good, but then we’ve found it’s also a great way to improve your knowledge of your tools, train your development skills outside of normal project work and give ourselves (and everybody else) better tools to use in future. It feels good to be able to look back at the improvements you’ve made to, and to reflect on work we’ve been doing recently.

That’s what I want to do with this post: highlight some of the great contributions Softwire people have made back to the open-source community so far this year, and talk about options for finding things to help out with and getting more involved (both for us, and to encourage any of you who feel keen after reading this!).

Recent open-source contributions we’re proud of:

Want to get involved?

Inspired by any of the above, and interested in trying your hand at a bit of open-source contribution yourself? We’ve put together a list of useful ways we’ve found to find and dig into interesting projects:

Help write Firefox’s Dev Tools

Mostly just needs JS/HTML/CSS skills. has a list of bugs for total beginners to get started with, including a filter to find ‘mentored’ bugs, where there’s somebody assigned to help whoever picks the bug up first get set up and going. has more details.

Interested in helping out with other Mozilla open-source projects (Firefox OS, Rust, Servo, Firefox itself)? Take a look through

Subscribe to interesting projects on CodeTriage

CodeTriage lets you search projects by their number of open issues and language, e.g. Java, C# or JavaScript. Get emailed bugs in projects you subscribe to, and have a go at fixing any that sound interesting.

Help write better documentation

DocsDoctor will send you bits of documentation from projects you subscribe to; take a look through them, thing about whether they could be improved or clarified, and put in a quick patch to make everything more understandable for everybody.

For the more hardcore, you can also sign up to get totally sent undocumented methods and classes, and try and put together some useful notes on what they’re for and how to use them.

Make the tools you use day to day better for everybody

What libraries are you using at the moment? Do they work perfectly? Anything in the API that’s confusing, any poor documentation, or weird behaviour you have to work around? Send them a quick bug on Github, or have a look at fixing it yourself, and make your life (and everybody else’s) easier forevermore.

Come work for Softwire

We love this stuff, and we’re hiring.



Categories: Technical


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