In my last post, I made reference to all the people named Dave that have contributed to Eclipse over the years. I thought that I’d share a little more information about the query behind that.
We maintain a database that indexes all of the commits in all of our Git repositories. This includes the repositories that are on Eclipse Foundation servers and those that are hosted on GitHub. The index includes repositories from Eclipse, LocationTech, and PolarSys projects.
The database records that 2,344 software developers have contributed at least one commit to at least one open source project that is included in the Eclipse Neon release since the beginning of time.
This includes projects that are listed on the release page as well as any subprojects that release with parents that are listed. The Web Tools project, for example, is a single entry on the Eclipse Neon project list, but actually represents ten separate project teams.
The database does not record commits against SVN. Those projects that once used SVN but migrated to Git are included, but the solitary project that remains in SVN, Subversive, is not included in the the number of contributors.
According to the database, the very first commit happened on May 2/2001. I know that there was work done before that, but that’s the first commit that we record. This almost certain masks some of the original contributors.
Way back in the beginning of time, all of our open source projects used CVS which has an important limitation: CVS (and SVN for that matter) only records the identity of the committer, not the author. Author information is tracked elsewhere and I haven’t sorted out a way for the query to take this tracking into consideration, so many non-committer contributors from the CVS era are not represented.
It’s also possible that there is some duplication. We have pretty complete data on changing email addresses, so I have the ability to multiple email addresses, as well as committer IDs and other identifiers from the the CVS days into actual committer names, so I’m absolutely confident that the number is in the right ballpark.
So maybe let’s just say ~2,300 people have got us to where we are today.
FWIW, there are 16 contributors named Mike, 27 named Michael, 10 others with variations of Michael (e.g. Mickael and Mikael), and one Mik. I’m trying really hard to sort out a “drop the Mic” pun, but nothing’s coming to the surface. A little help?