The 7 biggest mistakes we made in 10 years of running a major open source project.

Methodology & Culture

Roel and Reinier of Project Lombok (the Java boilerplate busting tool) explain their top 7 mistakes made over the past 10 years of creating and maintaining an open source project.

For each mistake, they will elaborate on the reasons that led to the mistake and the solutions they came up with. No doubt you rely on hundreds, perhaps thousands, of open source projects in your daily professional life.

But how do these projects cope with demands for support, feature requests, offers of contribution, growing a community, and perhaps most interesting of all, how do the maintainers keep up their spirits to keep the project healthy and growing?

No programming experience required – sit back, relax, and be inspired as we tell anecdotes and talk through the particular challenges of open source maintenance with you.

We'll reminisce about the greatest challenges, as well as the greatest highlights. You'll walk away with a better understanding of how those many open source tools and libraries you rely on are kept afloat, which will help you interact with the support teams of the open source you use.

You'll be better able to judge what it means that today's IT sector is reliant on so many open source projects, and, if you are an open source maintainer or aspire to become one, you'll get a first hand account of some issues you might run into as your project flourishes.


Reinier Zwitserloot

Zorg op Orde BV

Original (and still!) maintainer of Project Lombok.

Roel Spilker


Roel Spilker is a technology evangelist at TOPdesk. He's been a professional java programmer and teacher since 1999. Roel has been a fan of compile-time checking. Together with Reinier Zwitserloot he is the inventor of Project Lombok, a compiler/IDE plugin to bring the java programming language into the next decennium.

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