Reviewing the Competition

After gaining an understanding of open source contributors and their experience with joining new projects, I reviewed the websites of 5 open source communities along with The goal was to assess each site’s content as it relates to attracting new contributors.

I initially began with a list of three projects but decided to approach the process through the eyes of one of my personas. During the ‘Discover’ stage, as outlined on my experience map, a potential contributor searches for and or reads an article in order to find an open source project to join. As such, I found an article listing the “10 most exciting, active new projects” in open source. I then picked two additional communities that potential contributors could alternatively join.

The six websites were listed in a spreadsheet along with assessment criteria. The content to be reviewed was defined by taking into account previous research about open source contributor’s motivations and roadblocks. For example, some contributors join a project in order to self-promote and build their own brand. If they see current contributors acknowledged on the website, they may be motivated to also join.




After walking through each website and adding notes to the spreadsheet, I created a high-level overview in Illustrator. Mapping out a visual snapshot of the spreadsheet highlights any content gaps.

I wanted to gain fresh input but also prepare for the final user testing that will take place with the prototype. was compared to by running a few semi-structured user tests with a convenience sample—i.e. adult family members.

A script to read to the participants was drafted along with questions and tasks to complete on each website. I recorded the screens and feedback of each participant for later review.

Insights gleaned from the competitive analysis and user reviews were arranged in a slide deck to give a high-level summary of the findings.