Jessica Lord, open web developer—designer

365 days a GitHubber

  • Jessica Lord
  • 2014-05-15
  • GitHub, Development

I've been at GitHub a year! That's 365 days of learning, laughing and working on something I care about. That's lucky!

A little over two years ago I was an urban designer for a lovely city on the east coast. Then I spent 2012 as a Code for America fellow and fell hard for open source and GitHub.

Open source and GitHub were the community and mindset missing from my way of working before, only I didn't know it then. I did know, however, that I wanted to build more and ship more (only I didn't know it was called 'ship' then). Hello, GitHub!

Now not only do I get to use GitHub everyday but I get to be a part of making GitHub as great as it can be — the tool, the company, the community. And I get to do this with an amazing group of people that are talented, passionate and hilarious. They inspire me with code and wit every day.

I work in particular on making better for new users and that gets me pretty jazzed. I remember quite well what it is like to be a new user and new to open source. I remember searching (and still do — because, never stop learning) for resources online to learn new things. I want to help others improve the way they work with GitHub, I want others to come to GitHub and start contributing to open source. I love working on the tools to help people do that.

The more people out there building things and working together, the better.

But the big, big thing for me working at GitHub has been that, more than I realized could be possible at the place you work, I know my coworkers want to see me happy and succeeding. I am myself everyday. I truly feel appreciated and that I have impact and potential. I try not to take these things for granted.

I thought I'd return to urban design after CfA but when I decided to work at GitHub I was also deciding to keep doing this software development thing. It's crazy to think about what I know now compared to what I knew a year ago. I've learned so much. I wouldn't have been able to do so if it weren't for a company that shares my goals, champions people and gives me the freedom to shape my experience. I want to keep learning (more Node and even some Rails), keep spreading the knowledge (Patchwork nights! Guides!) and I'm proud to do it as a GitHubber.