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Today is Thursday, November 1st, 2018 and that means that Hacktoberfest 2018 is in the history books. I’ve participated in Hacktoberfest for the last few years, but this year was different. This year, I started a new position at the company that organizes Hacktoberfest! Starting a new job and participating in Hacktoberfest is a compound challenge concerning managing work and personal time. This year, I discovered a new source motivation that further gamified Hacktoberfest for me: devswag.io. I enjoy free swag just as much as the next developer and I wanted to share some of my achievements here.

Swag achievements

I completed a handful of different Hacktoberfest tasks that resulted in some cool prizes. First, I completed the official Hacktoberfest challenge and therefore earned the official t-shirt for opening 5 pull requests in October. Second, I contributed 5 pull requests to SendGrid to earn the t-shirt swag from that company. Third, since Twilio recently announced the acquisition of SendGrid I thought I’d check out their offerings, and earned the Twilio Quest t-shirt for completing their Quest. Fourth, I completed the Microsoft Hacktoberfest challenge by submitting a pull request to a Microsoft Kubernetes GPU library. Fifth, I built a few of my OSS projects on CodeShip and received some stickers and a long sleeve t-shirt from that company. Last, but not least, I published my first Alexa Skill that earned me a free 3rd generation Echo Dot. The free Echo Dot offering was only active from October 15-31 and only eligible for people that hadn’t published an Alexa Skill before. My Alexa Skill, about snow conditions of all the ski resorts accessible from Interstate 70 in Colorado, helps Denverites know which mountain is worth their 1-day ski trip excursion.


I’m truly thankful that my current employer supports and encourages the OSS community with events like Hacktoberfest. So many people use OSS, but only so few contribute and support OSS. In my personal opinion, Hacktoberfest has helped grow OSS contributions significantly in the last 5 years. Keep up the great work DigitalOcean!