There are many stories about successful open source projects where thousands of contributors pour their sweat, tears and blood on the code, for the sake of peer reputation, building better tomorrow or big fat paycheck. For each one of these mega projects there exist smaller, less significant, ventures which do not get the front page spotlight. They are more personal projects where the founders play key role and no community has yet formed around the codebase.
These baby projects need daily care and nurturing, like recently planted seeds which are still about to sprouts out from the soil. Every week you go to see if new issues have been opened or more stars have appeared on Github’s stargazer button. And when you finally see positive activity around your project you’ll jump around in joy.
Personally I had such a recently Sevabot, a Skype bot with HTTP webhooks and UNIX script integration. It is a baby project of me and my friends. Someone was needing support in the context which we really couldn’t handle ourselves, here and here. Then, boom, out of nowhere, a third party I didn’t know beforehand replied and solved the issues.
I felt happiness. This means the project is self-sufficient to some degree. There exists someone, besides yourself, who cares of the work you have started. This gives you great feeling – you have created something that matters for other people. It also proves open source model being successful in this particular case.
This is why I love to work with open source and communities.