The Path to Code Contributions in MariaDB Server

I have been working for the MariaDB Foundation as the Chief Contributions Officer for a couple of weeks and it is fantastic being part of the MariaDB family again. Part of my job is to help the community massage pull requests into something that we can merge. I am, however, finding that one of the worst parts of my job is having to say “no” to contributions that clearly took a lot of time and effort on the part of the developer.

Contributions could be turned down or at least will require changes for a number of reasons.

Contribution Wish List

Would you like to contribute to the MariaDB Server code base, its feature set, its quality? Here’s what you can do to help – in other words, here’s our Contribution Wish List

Scratching your own itch

The assumption around code contributions is usually that the code contributor extends the product in a direction that corresponds to the contributor’s own needs, which in turn are close to the needs of other users. “Scratching your own itch” is the phrase commonly used.

Some itches are more for the common good

That said, we have also been approached by potential providers of contributions that would take a more general approach.

Contributions, our lifeblood

The lifeblood of MariaDB Foundation is contributions. Our trinity consists of the fundamental values of Adoption (of MariaDB Server), Openness (of the MariaDB Server codebase), and Continuity (of our operations and activities), all of which are centered around MariaDB Server. We rely on our financial sponsors to finance our activities, but the financial value of the code contributions we receive outshines the total sponsorship payments. That has been the case every year since MariaDB Server was launched.

Giving recognition to code contributions

The MariaDB Foundation has not given proper recognition to this fact, of the value of our contributions.