Microsoft has been nipping at the top open source contributor position for years, but a new analysis by Adobe developer Fil Maj puts Microsoft into a whole other universe of contributions. Or, at least, of contributors.
Using the GitHub REST API to pull public profile information from all 2,060,011 GitHub users who were active in 2017 (“active” meaning ten or more commits to public projects), Maj was able to pull the total number of corporate contributors to GitHub, with results that might surprise you.[ Celebration: 20 years of open source: Its world-changing history. | Contrarian: 20 years on, open source hasn’t changed the world as promised. ]
Getting at the GitHub truth around open source
Back in October 2017, Googler Felipe Hoffa tried to analyze GitHub PushEvents to understand which companies were most generously contributing to open source projects. By his estimation, Microsoft came out on top in terms of total contributors (about 1,300), compared to second-place Google (about 900 contributors), while Google topped the charts in terms of actual code pushed to repositories (about 1,100 compared to Microsoft’s roughly 825).