Many new and existing Debian users want to help make the distribution better but do not quite know where to begin. Debian comes with a very handy package called
how-can-i-help which tells you after each
apt invocation the current bugs that are associated with packages on your system.
The “Work-Needing and Perspective Packages” (WNPP) listing is a bit overwhelming for new contributors. What better way to figure out what packages need your help than by seeing a list of them each time you use apt.
The first time you run apt after installing this package it will likely spit out a long list of packages that need your help. Each subsequent time it will only show new packages or changes. In order to see the master list again you can use the
how-can-i-help --old command to see all packages that need your help.
I think this is a great way to get engaged with the software that you rely on each day. Although getting started with Debian development is not trivial, this lowers the barrier a bit and provides some clear direction on what to work on since the list includes packages that you are using every day.
If you made it this far, you should probably follow me on twitter. 🙂 Follow @levlaz