The purpose of this post is to outline how I got involved with Rust open source projects with a specific emphasis on the "softer" aspects of open source contributions such as finding them and interacting with project maintainers.
I’m a big fan of Rust and all the various IntelliJ IDEs and so naturally I am also an avid user of the awesome IntelliJ Rust plugin.
While using the plugin, I noticed some small quirks that were bothering me and some useful features that were missing. I wondered if there was something that I could do to improve that situation, so I checked out the plugin repository to see if there were some issues that I could help with.
It turned out that the answer was yes - I found an issue in a comment, sent my first pull request and it got approved and merged in 4 minutes (!). The friendly response I got from the plugin’s maintainers motivated me to continue improving the plugin and over time I found it to be incredibly enjoyable and rewarding - as of today, I have opened more than 100 PRs in the plugin’s repository.
Since contributing to a non-trivial open-source project can be daunting at first, I decided to document some of my experiences in this blog series to provide information for people that might also want to contribute to this plugin. I was inspired to do this by a similar blog post describing a contribution to Rust Analyzer.
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