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How to Contribute to Code Thesaurus

Hello! I'm glad you're reading this because I (geekygirlsarah) can use more help with getting Code Thesaurus to become a working and usable site!

Code of Conduct

We as members, contributors, and leaders pledge to make participation in our community a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of age, body size, visible or invisible disability, ethnicity, sex characteristics, gender identity and expression, level of experience, education, socio-economic status, nationality, personal appearance, race, religion, or sexual identity and orientation.

We pledge to act and interact in ways that contribute to an open, welcoming, diverse, inclusive, and healthy community.

You agree to follow our Code of Conduct while working on the project and/or being a part of any related communities. You can read that here.


Code Thesaurus grew out of @geekygirlsarah building it over Hacktoberfest 2018, 2019, and 2020. She's a strong encourager of working on Hacktoberfest, and as such this is a project that has opted in!

Read on to learn how to take on issues or thesaurus data files to contribute!

Check Out the Project

Head over to to see how the site currently works.

You can also head over to the site Documentation and read about how the site is designed and developed and how the core thesaurus files are created.

All of Code Thesaurus's changes fall into these categories: * Working on features or bugs filed as Issues on the main site * Adding programming language information to the thesaurus data files * Editing documentation for the project (under that repo

Claiming An Issue

If you wish to claim a GitHub issue, please review the full issue as I try to make them as detailed as possible. If you wish to claim it, leave a comment indicating so. I can then officially add you as the assignee.

If I add you as an assignee, you'll have one week to either create a PR, or add comments indicating any updates. If I don't hear from you in a week, you may be unassigned.

If I remove you, you're always welcome to leave another comment to get added back again.

Read below about our Issue to PR process.

Thesaurus Data Updates

The ultimate goal of Code Thesaurus is to provide the best polyglot developer reference tool to any and all developers, regardless of language they code in or their experience level. To that end, we'll need contributions not just on the website but to the actual thesaurus data files.

These may not have issues. Instead, they're openly designed to allow people to add new features to a language or to easily add a new language to the system.

Please read over the Documentation to learn about how the thesaurus system works. Then feel free to work on adding or correcting a data set!

If you wish to officially "claim" a part, please file a New Issue, add in the language and concept you plan to work on, and then I'll assign you to that.

Reporting Bugs or Issues

Did you find a bug? Great! Make sure it's not already reported on our Issues Page page. If it's not, please open up a New Issue and add it so I can look it over.

Please make your issue as detailed as possible! Add in the page or URL it happened at, what you were doing when the error occurred, or any other details important to the issue. I may contact you to try to get more details if I can't replicate it.

From Issue to PR

Think you can tackle an issue? Great!

  1. First, fork the repo so you have your own copy of it
  2. Create a new branch. You can name it whatever you want, but I'd recommend something descriptive, like issue-123-fix-string-exception
  3. Make your changes! I suggest committing early and often.
  4. Make sure you test the changes. Check out how to run the project on the Installation page.
  5. If you can test the changes and they work reliably, then create a new pull request. Be sure to either add Fixes #1234 or Closes #1234 so GitHub can link your issue number automatically.
  6. The CI/CD system should run tests (if applicable) and spin up a sample deploy of the app.
  7. I'll review it and leave any comments for things that may need to change. Changes aren't intended because your code is bad but more a consideration towards how it may work with other parts of the project or ways the user might interact with it.
  8. Finally, we'll merge it in!

Note: Due to the prolific spam at this year's Hacktoberfest, your PR may get marked as invalid or spam if it appears to not follow the request on the issue or appears to just be trying to get easy PRs for the shirt. If it's marked as invalid/spam as a mistake, please reach out so I can correct it.

Adding New Features

I have a large roadmap for this project and will be adding lots of new features in the near future. For now, the present focus is on getting our MVP (minimal viable product) out the door. For now, please stick with the Issues currently there and I will add new feature-issues when they're ready.

If you strongly believe something should still be added, you are welcome to add an Issue and I'll consider it.

Adding or Revising Documentation

I want Code Thesaurus to be easy-to-use for anyone regardless of their experience label. That requires good documentation of many facets of the project. I will very much welcome any additional changes or suggestions on what to change or how to evolve the documentation so it's helpful for people to understand the technical side of the site.

What About Cosmetic Patches?

Issues marked with a frontend tag are open to having the cosmetic changes fixed. If there are typos or other issues, you are welcome to try to correct those. However, frivolous PRs for unnecessary changes may be marked as invalid or spam.

Have Questions or Problems?

Please feel free to reach out! You can:

Happy Hacking!

Last update: 2021-03-14