Hactoberfest is what triggered me to start contributing to the open-source rather than being a bystander on the open-source community. Whenever I get some time, I am contributing to open source repositories since I first participated in Hacktoberfest. The goal was to exercise what I know already and learn new things from the open-source repositories.

While working on the open-source repositories, I always try to stick to the contributor guidelines and be conscious of the changes I propose. In the absence of contributor guidelines, I tried to make judgments based on common sense and proposed changes. Most of the time, it worked, and there were few exceptions where the maintainer didn’t see the same way as I did. We agreed to ignore the changes and closed the Pull request. Sometimes the repository isn’t actively maintained, which results in the pull requests being ignored by the maintainer.

I would like to know the opinions of the community on the below situations. What’s the recommended way?

Note: For the discussion, please assume the repositories are MIT/apache licensed, and the intention is not getting around licensing.

Scenario # 1: There’s an open-sourced android app ‘A.’

  • It is released in the play store
  • Has less than 50k installs
  • Actively maintained by the developer.

You propose a feature/behavior change that adds value to the app but doesn’t directly fall in the line of the maintainer’s vision. The new feature/behavior change has potential & can still be extended.

Assuming you feel that you would like to continue in your direction, Would you create a clone of the app & release it under a different name?

Scenario # 2: Same scenario as # 1

  • It is released in the play store
  • Has less than 50k installs
  • Not actively maintained by the developer.

You propose a feature/behavior change that adds value to the app but doesn’t directly fall in the line of the maintainer’s vision. The new feature/behavior change has potential & can still be extended.

Assuming you feel that you would like to continue in your direction, Would you create a clone of the app & release it under a different name?

Scenario # 3: There’s an open-sourced android app ‘B,’

  • It is released in the play store
  • Has less than 50k installs
  • Actively maintained by the developer.

You like the architecture/design/UI of the app and feel it could be a great base code for a different app idea you have in mind.

How would you go about creating your app? Create a new repo and import the code and modify it for your use?

This post is also available on DEV.