Sunday, April 22, 2018

It's only a beginning

What have I learned for the past 8 months of Open Source Programming?

I was convinced from the very beginning that this course would be important for my career, experience and learning process. But at the same time I was scared: what can I do for a large project in a hype technology company? Am I smart enough? Do I have enough knowledge?

The first thing that I learned is how to feel confident. Before this course when I was getting a new task/assignment either in school or at work, I was stressing out. But now the first thought that pops into my head is "I can do it". Open Source taught me that I didn't have to know everything. In fact nobody can know everything, it is just impossible. The question really is where can I find needed resources? With Google and Stackoverflow (God bless the person who had that amazing idea to connect the community) there is nothing to stress about, everything can be found online.

Another thing that I have learned: programmer is not a person who sits somewhere alone an just comes up with brilliant ideas, it's a community where ideas from hundreds of people are combined and strong software is built. You are not supposed to be scared to ask for help if you need it. Sometimes that one small push/line/idea would start the thought process and another idea would be born.

All those conclusions sound so obvious, but it's so hard to actually believe in that and experience that happiness of being connected with other people or an opportunity to ask for help, if you need it.
I am grateful to Open Source course in Seneca, that showed me the other way software may be built, the way how to stand out from the crowd, how to keep up with new trends in technology and how to be a part of a massive community around the world. Sometimes open source leads to getting a job and it always leads to getting a valuable experience and brushing up your skills. Your Github profile is a real time resume and it really shows that programming is your passion or at least something you enjoy to do in your free time.

I am amazed by how much my personality was changed and how I became more confident as a programmer. I am also not that anxious when I don't have an answer for another question from my manager.

It's not the end of my Open Source "career" for sure, I will still contribute to Mozilla Addons-Frontend project since I enjoy it so much. I think that open source is a great place to maintain your current skills and gain new ones. I am happy that I had the opportunity to learn that Github is so much more than just a version control tool! It is such a trill to see another email notification from the Github, I suddenly am important.

Release 0.6: More contributions

So it's been another two weeks already.
I am still on the "honeymoon" phase with Mozilla Addons-frontend project. There are always bugs for me to fix. 

My strategy didn't change that much from the previous release:

1) find a bug
2) reproduce a bug
3) find a quickest fix modifying state of the properties right in Google Developer tools
4) try to make the fix more specific for the needed area of code
5) improve my fix, remove redundant code
6) submit PR

The first bug, I have fixed. was caused by my previous PR, so I felt like it was my responsibility to fix it. It was about putting the right icon for the right error message. Originally the green message had an exclamation mark as an icon, but I have changed it to be Mozilla Firefox icon. My fix affected a red message as well, so I have wrote a different SCSS class to handle green message.
screen shot 2018-04-19 at 12 43 59 pmscreen shot 2018-04-19 at 12 45 14 pm
I was going through the list of bugs and I saw a few similar with unbroken strings, it means that when the string is too long, it's not nicely cropped with ellipsis at the end, but it continues to live trough the next containers and only ends on the edge of the browser(as the url on the picture):


I have not done anything to handle this situation before and I feel like it's something all programmers who touch front-end should know. So I decided to dig in. I have found an issue, solution and submitted another PR

So I learned how to break unbroken strings:
display: block;
overflow: hidden;
text-overflow: ellipsis;

I came across another similar bug and decided to contribute there as well.
So if you are Mozilla Firefox user and you are interested in Addons, the homepage will not be overwhelmed by overflowing strings:

screen shot 2018-04-20 at 11 22 06 pm

For now any of my pull requests are not merged and are pending to get reviewed probably on Monday.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Release 0.5: Mozilla addons-frontend experience

Welcome to the project: Mozilla Style

When I was writing my previous blogpost about my experience with Mozilla, I didn't get a lot of interaction at that point, but on the next day my pull request was noticed and a lot of interesting things have happened to me.

First of all, my PR got merged!

Second thing: I was added to the recognition wiki! It's a small detail, but it made me feel special and valued!

Community manager(yes, that's a thing in Mozilla) invited me to become a Mozillian and vouched me!

My next steps: fixing more issues

Inspired by all the good things that had happened to me I started working on a new bug. I could not reproduce the bug, I was getting an error:

1]  Error: Error calling: /api/v3/accounts/profile/ (status: 500)
[1]     at createApiError (/.../addons-frontend/src/core/api/index.js:59:20)
[1]     at /.../addons-frontend/src/core/api/index.js:189:24
[1]     at <anonymous>
[1]     at process._tickDomainCallback (internal/process/next_tick.js:228:7)
[1] [2018-03-28T15:37:02.561Z] ERROR: server/86882 on mac...: Caught error during rendering: Error: Error calling: /api/v3/accounts/profile/ (status: 500) (app=amo)
[1] [2018-03-28T15:37:02.561Z] ERROR: server/86882 on mac...: Showing 500 page for error: Error: Error calling: /api/v3/accounts/profile/ (status:500) (app=amo)
[1] [2018-03-28T15:37:02.562Z] ERROR: server/86882 on mac...: Error calling: /api/v3/accounts/profile/ (status: 500) (app=amo)
[1]     Error: Error calling: /api/v3/accounts/profile/ (status: 500)
[1]         at createApiError (/.../addons-frontend/src/core/api/index.js:59:20)
[1]         at /.../addons-frontend/src/core/api/index.js:189:24
[1]         at <anonymous>
[1]         at process._tickDomainCallback (internal/process/next_tick.js:228:7)
[1] Warning: Failed prop type: The prop `component` is marked as required in `ServerHtml`, but its value is `undefined`.
[1]     in ServerHtml
[2] [2018-03-28T15:37:02.567Z]  INFO: proxy/86875 on mac...: 500 ~> (app=amo)

So I wrote a comment that I needed some help in the issue and moved on to another one. With some help of Chrome Developer Tools, I have located React Component and it's SCSS class that needed a change. I have submitted my PR request and only after that I have noticed a comment from Mozilla Member:

   Hi @svitlana-galianova, thanks for your interest but I'm going to be taking this issue. 😄 
   You can have a look at our "contrib: good first bugs" issues to find issues to contribute to.

I felt a bit out of place... Matt was super friendly about the situation and helped me to perfect my PR, so now it's fixed and merged!

And I had some more free time to come back an work on the issue, I started to work on, but was facing some blockers. I tried using another server instead of amo:stage, I started amo:dev and I was able to overcome my blocker and move on with the issue.

The problem in this issue was lack of space between the image and badge:
screen shot 2018-04-02 at 9 54 22 am

And of course that's a margin issue, so using Chrome Developer Tools again I was able to locate the place where this issue occurred. Matt reviewed my PR again, so after a bit of discussion: my fix was merged!

I have also started working on the third issue. To solve this issue I needed to find a way for this window to look good with text of different length:

English version:
screen shot 2018-04-02 at 1 08 24 pm
German version:
screen shot 2018-04-05 at 12 51 50 pm

After a bit of a research I have found width: fit-content property and fixed it, so my third PR is also merged now.

And as I thought that my Release 0.5 was complete, I had discovered that I have accidentally fixed another issue with one PR. I was going through the issues for my next release and I came across it, because it looked similar to what I just did. I expected to fix it real quick, but I didn't even have to do anything, since I had already fixed it.

I decided to take a look at issues for Release 0.6 and I found out that the issue I fixed for Release 0.4 got reopened, because the person who requested it needed another related small fix. I decided to fix it as well, so I submitted another PR and it landed without any changes requested by developers!

Good things happen after you make a right choice

I am so happy I switched to Mozilla Addons-frontend project!

That's the right place for me. I feel motivated to work with Open Source again. I don't feel the pressure of doing something not enjoyable anymore. And I feel good about myself! I am useful to the community and I am quite ok/good with what I do!

I think that's the place I hoped to be in the first place. It's nice to see the time you spend on something pays back and you get results. Nothing motivates me better than a success. And now I know another my programming strength: fixing React and SCSS issues.

Another good sign: the due date for this Release is in a few days and I am almost done! It has finally happened again: I have managed to become calm and happy again, I am not worried about homework. I enjoy working on Open Source and I get complimentary grades. That's awesome!

It's only a beginning

What have I learned for the past 8 months of Open Source Programming? I was convinced from the very beginning that this course would be i...