extrawurst's blog

GitUI - 1 year in open source

• general, programming, and rust

Time races

Exactly one year ago I commited the first version of GitUI to Github. It’s crazy how quickly the time passed by and now we celebrate the first year anniversary🥳.


What is GitUI?

GitUI is a terminal UI for git written in Rust and aiming to simplify common git tasks in a keyboard-only, cross platform and fast way without leaving your beloved text interface.

Time to reflect

This project attracted way more attention than i anticipated and so I eventually found myself reviewing contributions by others❤️!

What a great feeling. This is why you publish something open source, right?

Well it is a double-edged sword: With every contributor you get a handful of issues and feature requests, some make sense, some are interesting challenges, some are ridiculous, some are just not important to you, still it is a good feeling to see your creation being noticed.

You learn to say no. Well technically it is more like a nice idea, not high up on my list though, contributions welcome instead of no.


My 10 most important take-aways:

  1. Be nice and welcoming to everyone who contributes, even the smallest issue.
  2. Provide a roadmap, so contributors can see the big picture.
  3. Be prepared that people will try to fork away and think they can do better.
  4. Some users will think you just wait to fix their issues for them.
  5. There will be low times, stuff will pile up - learn to accept that don’t feel pressured.
  6. At times its tempting to just accept a PR & finally move on - do not give in - keep your quality standard.
  7. Number 5. will annoy contributors that seek a quick’n’dirty contributor badge, but it is a good natural filter.
  8. It is a collosal enjoyment to see first time contributors grow to be a reliable source of support.
  9. No hard feelings when people leave again, do not finish their work, do not show ownership, lose interest.
  10. Ask for help, it is surprising how humble-ness mobilizes people.

In numbers

30 amazing contributors ❤️


github stars over time ⭐️


130 forks 🍴


~18.000 lines of rust code 🦀


The road to 1.0

My initial goal was to match features that i found annoying in the regular git-cli. Use-cases that I resort to solve in GUIs like Fork. We have long passed that point thanks to contributions. Still I now formulated my top priorities to get done before being able to call GitUI version 1.0:

Feel free to join in on the fun! You are no rust developer? No worries, its a good way to start with our good-first-issues and we help you navigate the pitfalls.

You like what GitUI became? Consider sponsoring to speed up development: Github Sponsors ❤️

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