Hackathon to Tackle Open Source Projects Raises Excitement in New Orleans Technology Community

The New Orleans Open Source Hackathon (Open Source NOLA), as with all hackathons, is calling for developers, designers, technical writers, even open source fans for the event scheduled May 9th through 10th, 2014 at Launch Pad, information that Open Source NOLA founder Bryan Joseph was excited to recently announce.

Open Source NOLAJoseph recognizes the many open source projects, meaning software for which the original source code is made freely available and can be redistributed and modified as the user sees fit. The hackathon’s website mentions the list created by Code Triage of various open source projects, by language, that could use the help of attendees.

“The hackathon is the perfect event for attendees to contribute to their favorite open source projects for 48 hours. Hopefully hackers and non-hackers alike will continue to contribute after the hackathon ends. If we contribute to open source projects, everyone wins. The contributor not only helps the project, but it also looks good on their resume as well and users of the software, whether directly or indirectly, get a better and safer product.”

Joseph said he is organizing the event because he is a fan of open source software. “It’s just something I decided to do one day. I asked the NOLATech group on Facebook if this is something they would like to see happen and I got a very positive response.”

Everyone uses open source software in one way or another, said Joseph. “And most, if not all, technology companies are built on top of open source software. The startup community would be a lot smaller if open source software didn’t exist and everyone had to pay licensing fees for all the software needed to build their company. At the same time, open source has benefited from startups because they are not only using open source software, but are contributing to projects or open sourcing portions of their infrastructure.”

Although the event will be taking place in New Orleans, Joseph hopes to get the local community as well as the hackathon regulars in Baton Rouge and Lafayette to participate. He expects the majority of participants to be developers and designers but would love to see writers as well. “A lot of open source projects need documentation either created or edited and proofread,” explains Joseph. “There is so much more to do in open source besides programming that I’m hoping to get as many people involved as possible.”

Looking toward the future, Joseph says a stretch goal would be to get an open source foundation to look into launching an office here. “I would love for a company like Mozilla to have an office in New Orleans.”

To register for the event, click here.

For more information, including how to become a sponsor, visit opensourcenola.org