by Gregory Wolanski

Open Source Design 500

Five hundred open source projects in need of design help

Backstory

You’re a designer. You would like to get involved in open source but don’t know where to begin. You don’t want to work on any open source project. You want to make an impact. But how can you find open source projects that are looking for design help and are being used by many people?

I’ve been asking myself this question for at least a few months. I haven’t been able to find the answer on the web. So I decided to treat it as a design problem.

For more than a year, I explored my answers to the question “What would you like to do if money were no object?” “Building free software” was one of my answers.

I did my research. Most open source projects are on GitHub. GitHub has a feature where users can star projects. This is how GitHub describes stars:

You can star repositories to keep track of projects you find interesting and discover similar projects in your news feed.
Starring a repository makes it easy to find again later. […]
Starring a repository also shows appreciation to the repository maintainer for their work.

In the absence of better alternatives, I allowed myself to assume that the number of stars could serve to measure the impact of a project.

Things to do in projects are called “issues” on GitHub. GitHub has a search engine. Is it possible to do a GitHub search for current issues labeled “ux”, “ui” or “design” and sort them according to the number of stars awarded to the projects?

No.

Hmm.

I learned what I needed to learn and wrote a program that builds such a list. At the time of this writing, it returns 17,742 issues. 17,742 things to do in 2,942 projects. It took two hours to extract all this data from GitHub. And these are just the things from the last 12 months. It’s an excessive amount of data.

What can be done with all this data? A lot. The first thing I’m doing is making the following list of 500 open source projects in need of help from designers. I hope that this is an inspiration for you. It helped me and I believe that it will help you too.

Five hundred open source projects in need of design help

1. freeCodeCamp/freeCodeCamp・291470 stars

2. atom/atom・42019 stars

3. Microsoft/vscode・39428 stars

4. jekyll/jekyll・32036 stars

5. getlantern/lantern・30073 stars

6. zurb/foundation-sites・26701 stars

7. neovim/neovim・25132 stars

8. TryGhost/Ghost・24453 stars

9. nylas/nylas-mail・23737 stars

10. ant-design/ant-design・20182 stars

11. Leaflet/Leaflet・20065 stars

12. apache/incubator-superset・16920 stars

13. storybooks/storybook・16143 stars

14. npm/npm・14633 stars

15. facebook/jest・13737 stars

16. angular-ui/ui-router・13671 stars

17. ipython/ipython・12177 stars

18. angular/material2・12073 stars

19. NativeScript/NativeScript・11807 stars

20. diaspora/diaspora・11493 stars

21. keystonejs/keystone・11433 stars

22. tootsuite/mastodon・11413 stars

23. source-foundry/Hack・10407 stars

24. LightTable/LightTable・9930 stars

25. JuliaLang/julia・9577 stars

26. Automattic/wp-calypso・9463 stars

27. fabric/fabric・9298 stars

28. pockethub/PocketHub・9087 stars

29. chmln/flatpickr・9055 stars

30. spree/spree・8870 stars

31. WhisperSystems/Signal-Android・8475 stars

32. elastic/logstash・8302 stars

33. OpenEmu/OpenEmu・8187 stars

34. docker/kitematic・8057 stars

35. metabase/metabase・7605 stars

36. FineUploader/fine-uploader・7346 stars

37. Wox-launcher/Wox・7329 stars

38. CachetHQ/Cachet・7300 stars

39. mailpile/Mailpile・7141 stars

40. mozilla/metrics-graphics・6759 stars

41. ether/etherpad-lite・6621 stars

42. apex/apex・6386 stars

43. travis-ci/travis-ci・6263 stars

44. ory/editor・6232 stars

45. brave/browser-laptop・6227 stars

46. SFTtech/openage・6213 stars

47. telegramdesktop/tdesktop・6106 stars

48. ianstormtaylor/slate・6051 stars

49. insidegui/WWDC・6036 stars

50. reactioncommerce/reaction・6009 stars

51. joemccann/dillinger・5716 stars

52. keeweb/keeweb・5687 stars

53. owncloud/core・5656 stars

54. zulip/zulip・5582 stars

55. gravitational/teleport・5431 stars

56. the-control-group/voyager・4990 stars

57. MonoGame/MonoGame・4724 stars

58. OpenRA/OpenRA・4657 stars

59. ant-design/ant-design-pro・4527 stars

60. topcoat/topcoat・4276 stars

61. icsharpcode/ILSpy・4105 stars

62. Strider-CD/strider・4053 stars

63. spinnaker/spinnaker・3940 stars

64. rsms/inter・3917 stars

65. rtfd/readthedocs.org・3873 stars

66. prose/prose・3869 stars

67. apex/up・3835 stars

68. HospitalRun/hospitalrun-frontend・3772 stars

69. Sylius/Sylius・3723 stars

70. mattgodbolt/compiler-explorer・3584 stars

71. netlify/netlify-cms・3582 stars

72. askmike/gekko・3575 stars

73. scylladb/scylla・3539 stars

74. malcommac/SwiftDate・3435 stars

75. jaegertracing/jaeger・3391 stars

76. koreader/koreader・3382 stars

77. flarum/core・3380 stars

78. apache/couchdb・3338 stars

79. nextcloud/server・3221 stars

80. wallabag/wallabag・3172 stars

81. vmware/harbor・3146 stars

82. HearthSim/Hearthstone-Deck-Tracker・3133 stars

83. hashicorp/nomad・3040 stars

84. mawww/kakoune・2995 stars

85. transloadit/uppy・2995 stars

86. twitter/heron・2990 stars

87. jupyter/jupyter・2941 stars

88. googlearchive/chromedeveditor・2901 stars

89. eventbrite/britecharts・2890 stars

90. postmanlabs/postman-app-support・2854 stars

91. ricochet-im/ricochet・2812 stars

92. HubPress/hubpress.io・2773 stars

93. benvanik/xenia・2753 stars

94. NVIDIA/DIGITS・2712 stars

95. phpmyadmin/phpmyadmin・2708 stars

96. martanne/vis・2700 stars

97. pyrocms/pyrocms・2672 stars

98. sitespeedio/sitespeed.io・2659 stars

99. lektor/lektor・2567 stars

100. TykTechnologies/tyk・2558 stars

101. mozilla-services/react-jsonschema-form・2504 stars

102. lesspass/lesspass・2481 stars

103. kangax/compat-table・2443 stars

104. statsmodels/statsmodels・2424 stars

105. Microsoft/sqlopsstudio・2402 stars

106. gitextensions/gitextensions・2374 stars

107. redox-os/tfs・2372 stars

108. gephi/gephi・2353 stars

109. owncloud/android・2335 stars

110. duplicati/duplicati・2322 stars

111. freedomofpress/securedrop・2210 stars

112. MovingBlocks/Terasology・2203 stars

113. rundeck/rundeck・2189 stars

114. thoughtbot/shoulda-matchers・2155 stars

115. wordpress-mobile/WordPress-iOS・2104 stars

116. aseprite/aseprite・2081 stars

117. nteract/nteract・2059 stars

118. iron-meteor/iron-router・2057 stars

119. cssmagic/blog・2023 stars

120. tomahawk-player/tomahawk・2004 stars

121. wireapp/wire-android・1976 stars

122. EFForg/https-everywhere・1960 stars

123. bigbluebutton/bigbluebutton・1944 stars

124. opentoonz/opentoonz・1928 stars

125. prikhi/pencil・1919 stars

126. ktorio/ktor・1913 stars

127. iron-io/functions・1861 stars

128. getguesstimate/guesstimate-app・1854 stars

129. howtographql/howtographql・1852 stars

130. CMB2/CMB2・1838 stars

131. Netflix/security_monkey・1833 stars

132. OpenZeppelin/zeppelin-solidity・1812 stars

133. punkave/apostrophe・1807 stars

134. mumble-voip/mumble・1794 stars

135. OpenGrok/OpenGrok・1764 stars

136. fnproject/fn・1747 stars

137. ckan/ckan・1744 stars

138. ampache/ampache・1734 stars

139. fontforge/fontforge・1714 stars

140. trailsjs/trails・1693 stars

141. CartoDB/cartodb・1647 stars

142. alexrj/Slic3r・1643 stars

143. asciidoctor/asciidoctor・1641 stars

144. onyx-platform/onyx・1633 stars

145. solidusio/solidus・1608 stars

146. SUSE/Portus・1606 stars

147. rubygems/rubygems.org・1600 stars

148. divmain/GitSavvy・1597 stars

149. atom/teletype・1587 stars

150. wordpress-mobile/WordPress-Android・1585 stars

151. goldendict/goldendict・1574 stars

152. LMMS/lmms・1572 stars

153. frontendbr/forum・1568 stars

154. verdaccio/verdaccio・1566 stars

155. Radarr/Radarr・1565 stars

156. canjs/canjs・1547 stars

157. status-im/status-react・1546 stars

158. snipe/snipe-it・1525 stars

159. git/git-scm.com・1522 stars

160. montagejs/montage・1519 stars

161. sagalbot/vue-select・1508 stars

162. SSilence/selfoss・1493 stars

163. NixOS/nix・1488 stars

164. SpiderOak/Encryptr・1460 stars

165. vector-im/riot-web・1432 stars

166. swimlane/ngx-charts・1432 stars

167. kimchi-project/kimchi・1410 stars

168. django-admin-bootstrapped/django-admin-bootstrapped・1405 stars

169. seven332/EhViewer・1401 stars

170. Teradata/covalent・1376 stars

171. WordPress/gutenberg・1347 stars

172. jnunemaker/flipper・1322 stars

173. duckduckgo/duckduckgo・1316 stars

174. pypa/warehouse・1285 stars

175. wesnoth/wesnoth・1264 stars

176. bitovi/jquerypp・1256 stars

177. 720kb/ndm・1238 stars

178. ASKBOT/askbot-devel・1231 stars

179. nyaadevs/nyaa・1224 stars

180. mustache/mustache.github.com・1220 stars

181. icefox/git-achievements・1213 stars

182. corda/corda・1207 stars

183. donejs/donejs・1202 stars

184. blockstack/blockstack・1188 stars

185. firebug/firebug・1169 stars

186. nunit/nunit・1150 stars

187. osTicket/osTicket・1141 stars

188. mozilla/thimble.mozilla.org・1129 stars

189. isaacs/github・1118 stars

190. GSA/data.gov・1114 stars

191. Elgg/Elgg・1097 stars

192. Automattic/simplenote-android・1045 stars

193. Schmavery/facebook-chat-api・1034 stars

194. ankidroid/Anki-Android・1028 stars

195. bpmn-io/bpmn-js・1028 stars

196. boostorg/beast・1016 stars

197. jxtech/wechatpy・1012 stars

198. 24pullrequests/24pullrequests・1003 stars

199. composer/packagist・1002 stars

200. iRareMedia/iCloudDocumentSync・997 stars

201. justwatchcom/gopass・987 stars

202. smartstoreag/SmartStoreNET・974 stars

203. purpleidea/mgmt・970 stars

204. dotnet/corefxlab・965 stars

205. translate/pootle・929 stars

206. modoboa/modoboa・910 stars

207. devsnd/cherrymusic・909 stars

208. craftcms/cms・896 stars

209. lightningnetwork/lnd・891 stars

210. fritzing/fritzing-app・889 stars

211. pantsbuild/pants・883 stars

212. stampery/mongoaudit・883 stars

213. EFForg/privacybadger・881 stars

214. jfurrow/flood・872 stars

215. mypaint/mypaint・864 stars

216. mixxxdj/mixxx・858 stars

217. thredded/thredded・844 stars

218. Yoast/wordpress-seo・816 stars

219. trailofbits/manticore・812 stars

220. atom/autocomplete-plus・810 stars

221. blockstack/blockstack-browser・809 stars

222. mirage/irmin・806 stars

223. 4pr0n/ripme・779 stars

224. frappe/frappe・776 stars

225. boostorg/compute・772 stars

226. yeoman/yeoman.github.io・762 stars

227. guyzmo/git-repo・741 stars

228. securitywithoutborders/hardentools・739 stars

229. python/pythondotorg・737 stars

230. allegro/ralph・737 stars

231. material-foundation/material-remixer-android・734 stars

232. ThemeFuse/Unyson・730 stars

233. brave/browser-ios・730 stars

234. duckduckgo/zeroclickinfo-goodies・725 stars

235. akira/exq・712 stars

236. patternfly/patternfly・711 stars

237. JabRef/jabref・704 stars

238. securitytxt/security-txt・702 stars

239. mozilla-mobile/focus-ios・697 stars

240. owtf/owtf・688 stars

241. eslint/espree・687 stars

242. potree/potree・681 stars

243. mavlink/qgroundcontrol・672 stars

244. insidegui/PodcastMenu・667 stars

245. funretro/distributed・655 stars

246. projecthamster/hamster・654 stars

247. pods-framework/pods・653 stars

248. firasdib/Regex101・652 stars

249. FreshRSS/FreshRSS・649 stars

250. opentx/opentx・641 stars

251. LLK/scratch-blocks・640 stars

252. solvespace/solvespace・640 stars

253. HTBox/allReady・629 stars

254. factor/factor・628 stars

255. wavebox/waveboxapp・619 stars

256. nodejs/nodejs.org・612 stars

257. NativeScript/nativescript-cli・605 stars

258. glowing-bear/glowing-bear・605 stars

259. erengy/taiga・595 stars

260. bitovi/funcunit・585 stars

261. sulu/sulu-standard・585 stars

262. webrecorder/webrecorder・583 stars

263. hsz/idea-gitignore・582 stars

264. mulesoft/api-console・579 stars

265. eclipse/smarthome・579 stars

266. emberjs/website・576 stars

267. emoncms/emoncms・572 stars

268. vickychijwani/quill・563 stars

269. ManageIQ/manageiq・562 stars

270. simonmichael/hledger・554 stars

271. wroscoe/donkey・537 stars

272. rwengine/openrw・528 stars

273. alephdata/aleph・518 stars

274. hootsuite/atlantis・513 stars

275. nextcloud/android・511 stars

276. DynamoDS/Dynamo・511 stars

277. consul/consul・509 stars

278. GoldenCheetah/GoldenCheetah・503 stars

279. flosell/lambdacd・503 stars

280. friendica/friendica・500 stars

281. noflo/noflo-ui・498 stars

282. KeitIG/museeks・497 stars

283. mozilla-mobile/focus-android・489 stars

284. exercism/cli・488 stars

285. scout-app/scout-app・487 stars

286. coreinfrastructure/best-practices-badge・486 stars

287. h2non/gentleman・478 stars

288. owncloud/ios・473 stars

289. hyperledger/composer・472 stars

290. vifm/vifm・470 stars

291. prusa3d/Slic3r・467 stars

292. agrafix/Spock・463 stars

293. vector-im/riot-android・462 stars

294. log2timeline/plaso・457 stars

295. GhostText/GhostText・446 stars

296. ushahidi/platform・443 stars

297. EFForg/privacybadgerfirefox-legacy・442 stars

298. influxdata/chronograf・435 stars

299. istresearch/scrapy-cluster・433 stars

300. tgstation/tgstation・432 stars

301. quodlibet/quodlibet・429 stars

302. wallabyjs/public・422 stars

303. colobot/colobot・421 stars

304. chronotope/chrono・418 stars

305. ParabolInc/action・417 stars

306. atom/tree-view・415 stars

307. spack/spack・413 stars

308. HabitRPG/habitica-android・410 stars

309. osresearch/heads・410 stars

310. gdg-x/hoverboard・404 stars

311. fossasia/open-event-webapp・404 stars

312. owncloud/apps・402 stars

313. julianguyen/ifme・402 stars

314. google/blockly-android・402 stars

315. hashview/hashview・401 stars

316. Icinga/icingaweb2・395 stars

317. mikeboers/PyAV・394 stars

318. pencil2d/pencil・390 stars

319. bit-team/backintime・389 stars

320. ethereum/browser-solidity・381 stars

321. OpenXRay/xray-16・377 stars

322. atom/github・375 stars

323. Storj/core・374 stars

324. partkeepr/PartKeepr・372 stars

325. awesome-jobs/vietnam・371 stars

326. kubernetes-helm/monocular・370 stars

327. symfony-cmf/cmf-sandbox・366 stars

328. magefile/mage・364 stars

329. monero-project/kovri・360 stars

330. grena/gruik・358 stars

331. fossasia/loklak_search・357 stars

332. paragonie/airship・357 stars

333. openSUSE/osem・353 stars

334. redmatrix/hubzilla・348 stars

335. OpenPTT/OpenPTT・347 stars

336. kotcrab/vis-editor・342 stars

337. RocketChat/Rocket.Chat.iOS・336 stars

338. jsxc/jsxc・336 stars

339. threema-ch/threema-web・335 stars

340. mysociety/fixmystreet・333 stars

341. NUKnightLab/juxtapose・331 stars

342. codeforscience/sciencefair・329 stars

343. Etar-Group/Etar-Calendar・329 stars

344. Microsoft/pxt・326 stars

345. LLK/scratch-www・325 stars

346. theia-ide/theia・323 stars

347. byte-foundry/prototypo・322 stars

348. internetarchive/openlibrary・319 stars

349. aurelia/cli・317 stars

350. ZenHubIO/support・311 stars

351. haskell-foundation/foundation・308 stars

352. Storj/storjshare-gui・304 stars

353. OpenUserJS/OpenUserJS.org・304 stars

354. cla-assistant/cla-assistant・302 stars

355. roadiz/roadiz・301 stars

356. kbenoit/quanteda・300 stars

357. Spomky-Labs/jose・300 stars

358. nguillaumin/osmtracker-android・299 stars

359. vaadin/vaadin-grid・294 stars

360. ppy/osu-web・291 stars

361. humanmade/WordPress-Importer・288 stars

362. hotosm/osm-tasking-manager2・287 stars

363. Bionus/imgbrd-grabber・286 stars

364. lbryio/lbry-app・284 stars

365. AzureAD/azure-activedirectory-identitymodel-extensions-for-dotnet・282 stars

366. Glucosio/glucosio-android・276 stars

367. vinszent/gnome-twitch・276 stars

368. streetmix/streetmix・270 stars

369. CGCookie/retopoflow・265 stars

370. EasyRPG/Player・265 stars

371. coyim/coyim・264 stars

372. tylergaw/colorme・263 stars

373. nuttyartist/notes・261 stars

374. aframevr/aframe-inspector・259 stars

375. autolab/Autolab・256 stars

376. 500tech/mimic・253 stars

377. Kotlin/kotlinx.html・252 stars

378. php-censor/php-censor・249 stars

379. opencollective/opencollective・247 stars

380. ludumdare/ludumdare・245 stars

381. brave/browser-android-tabs・240 stars

382. refreshoxford/django-cbv-inspector・236 stars

383. steemit/condenser・235 stars

384. linkeddata/dokieli・234 stars

385. Microsoft/vscode-arduino・234 stars

386. sulu/sulu・234 stars

387. LLK/scratch-gui・234 stars

388. RocketChat/Rocket.Chat.Android・233 stars

389. Alanaktion/phproject・232 stars

390. nilmtk/nilmtk・232 stars

391. rambler-digital-solutions/rambler-it-ios・226 stars

392. Camelcade/Perl5-IDEA・225 stars

393. openopps/openopps-platform・222 stars

394. benbernard/RecordStream・222 stars

395. mysociety/alaveteli・219 stars

396. Sprytile/Sprytile・217 stars

397. enjalot/blockbuilder・216 stars

398. nunit/docs・215 stars

399. apex/static・215 stars

400. owncloud/music・211 stars

401. bardsoftware/ganttproject・211 stars

402. Automattic/sensei・210 stars

403. mysociety/mapit・208 stars

404. xibosignage/xibo・208 stars

405. Syonix/monolog-viewer・207 stars

406. OpenLiberty/open-liberty・207 stars

407. stelligent/mu・206 stars

408. hacktoberfest17/programming・205 stars

409. astroidmail/astroid・205 stars

410. 18F/18f.gsa.gov・204 stars

411. Philip-Scott/Notes-up・200 stars

412. caskdata/cdap・199 stars

413. nextcloud/calendar・199 stars

414. liberapay/liberapay.com・198 stars

415. atom/one-dark-ui・198 stars

416. Reedyn/Saga・197 stars

417. vector-im/riot-ios・196 stars

418. getgrav/grav-plugin-admin・195 stars

419. rsjaffe/MIDI2LR・195 stars

420. hakaru-dev/hakaru・193 stars

421. chromium/hstspreload.org・193 stars

422. GetDKAN/dkan・193 stars

423. Runalyze/Runalyze・192 stars

424. joakimskoog/AnApiOfIceAndFire・190 stars

425. monero-project/monero-gui・190 stars

426. RemoteTechnologiesGroup/RemoteTech・189 stars

427. ipfs-shipyard/peerpad・189 stars

428. snowleopard/alga・188 stars

429. atom/find-and-replace・187 stars

430. DMOJ/judge・185 stars

431. archimatetool/archi・184 stars

432. Storj/storjshare-daemon・184 stars

433. onury/accesscontrol・183 stars

434. propensive/rapture・183 stars

435. dtolnay/syn・182 stars

436. Vector35/binaryninja-api・182 stars

437. Automattic/wp-super-cache・180 stars

438. TrustWallet/trust-wallet-ios・180 stars

439. mroth/scmpuff・179 stars

440. wallabag/android-app・179 stars

441. decrypto-org/rupture・178 stars

442. trufont/trufont・177 stars

443. algorithmic-music-exploration/amen・175 stars

444. matrix-org/dendrite・175 stars

445. libratbag/libratbag・175 stars

446. Spreads/Spreads・174 stars

447. semperfiwebdesign/all-in-one-seo-pack・174 stars

448. nextcloud/bookmarks・172 stars

449. nightingale-media-player/nightingale-hacking・172 stars

450. vmware/docker-volume-vsphere・171 stars

451. lidarr/Lidarr・171 stars

452. uxbox/uxbox・168 stars

453. OpenRA/ra2・168 stars

454. Spacelog/Spacelog・167 stars

455. AdguardTeam/AdguardForiOS・167 stars

456. RestComm/Restcomm-Connect・165 stars

457. pychess/pychess・165 stars

458. camunda/camunda-modeler・164 stars

459. nextcloud/news・162 stars

460. nextcloud/ios・161 stars

461. codeforamerica/click_that_hood・160 stars

462. ejgallego/jscoq・159 stars

463. Trustroots/trustroots・157 stars

464. QubesOS/qubes-issues・157 stars

465. Microsoft/workbooks・157 stars

466. podlove/podlove-web-player・157 stars

467. publiclab/plots2・156 stars

468. magarena/magarena・156 stars

469. amilajack/popcorn-time-desktop・155 stars

470. quicwg/base-drafts・155 stars

471. balancemymoney/balance-open・154 stars

472. pixelated/pixelated-user-agent・152 stars

473. gap-system/gap・152 stars

474. inaturalist/inaturalist・152 stars

475. HabitRPG/habitica-ios・150 stars

476. lightninglabs/lightning-app・150 stars

477. yetibot/yetibot・149 stars

478. go-restruct/restruct・148 stars

479. nextcloud/nextcloudpi・142 stars

480. nextcloud/mail・140 stars

481. AdguardTeam/AdguardForAndroid・139 stars

482. smartchicago/chicago-atlas・139 stars

483. aaronpk/IndieAuth.com・138 stars

484. cloudflare/doca・138 stars

485. CaliOpen/Caliopen・138 stars

486. googlefonts/fontbakery・137 stars

487. juju/juju-gui・132 stars

488. ekylibre/ekylibre・131 stars

489. atom/settings-view・131 stars

490. rosedu/wouso・130 stars

491. vgstation-coders/vgstation13・129 stars

492. stefan-niedermann/nextcloud-notes・129 stars

493. AppleWin/AppleWin・129 stars

494. httpwg/http-extensions・129 stars

495. mozilla/fxa-content-server・128 stars

496. ZeroK-RTS/Zero-K・128 stars

497. clojure/clojure-site・127 stars

498. lewissbaker/cppcoro・126 stars

499. JohnCoatesOSS/Limitless・126 stars

500. OpenChemistry/tomviz・126 stars

PS: Don’t forget to read How to Contribute to Open Source.