opensource-challenges 0,0,0

A how-to guide for running open source challenges on, including examples and challenge ideas.

6 years after


This repo includes information on running a challenge to increase engagement and contributions to open source projects. You’ll find a quick how-to guide for setting up a challenge for free on and examples of current and past open source challenges.

What’s an open source challenge?

It’s a time-limited online hackathon where individuals or teams focus on contributing to an open source project. You can challenge others to submit demonstrations, new features, plugins, or extensions, bug fixes, or anything else that will help a project.

Why run a challenge?

It can help you promote your project and get more people to use it and contribute to it. There are several reasons to run a challenge in addition to moderating contributions on your GitHub page:

  • Grow traffic, engagement and community around your project
  • Help focus your community for a short period of time on a priority issue or goal
  • See how people are using a project - what features they use, how they work around shortfalls, etc. This can help you prioritize development
  • Encourage people to make creative, awesome stuff using your project

What’s involved in running a challenge?

Running a challenge is pretty simple and doesn’t take a lot of time. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Define the Challenge: You should be able to do this in a paragraph or two. Provide clear instructions on what you want people to work on and submit. Submissions could be a demonstration using your project, new features, plugins, extensions, bug fixes, or anything else that can help the project. If judges are going to score submissions and recognize the best, you should tell people what the judging criteria will be.

  • Promote it: Highlight the challenge in your GitHub README and promote it to your network (ChallengePost can provide you with an image). Ask some colleagues, friends or partners to promote it to their networks.

  • Judge Submissions: Set aside a few hours to review submissions and score them on whatever criteria you establish. Recruit qualified friends or colleagues to be judges.

You can publish your challenge on the ChallengePost platform. It’s free to use for open source challenges. ChallengePost provides a separate challenge website where you can review and highlight submissions and communicate with people that have registered. ChallengePost also promotes challenges on our platform to our global network of developers and designers. This can help you build community and expand engagement with your project.

To get started, contribute your challenge idea to this repo by adding a new issue or fill out this brief form and we’ll set up a draft challenge. If you have questions you can email us at [email protected]

What are some example open source challenges?

Extending HTML Inspector:

Dashing Widget Challenge:

Chart.js Personal Dashboard Challenge:

impress.js: Beyond the Presentation:

django dash:

Rails Rumble:

GitHub Game Off:

Know an example challenge that’s not included above? Submit a pull request and we’ll add it.

How can I contribute to this repo?

Contribute by sharing challenge examples (pull request) or ideas for open source challenges you’d like to see happen (issue). If you have an idea for a cool open source challenge create an issue and we’ll try and make it happen! If you’re ready to run a challenge complete this brief form. Email us at [email protected] if you have questions.

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