Get Started With Open Source

Open Source For Dummies,
OpenTeams Special Edition


Whether you know it or not, much of the modern world depends on open source software. From cars to Space-X rockets, from internet infrastructure to smartphones, just about everything runs using some sort of software—and much of that software is open source.

But what is open source? How does it work? Who creates it, and how? Is it just code, or is it something bigger…something deeper?

We wrote Open Source For Dummies, OpenTeams Special Edition because we believe in the power and importance of open source, and our mission is to help it grow and thrive. 

These pages contain something for everyone—from learning about where open source comes from and how it works to tips on taking your first steps in building it.

Download your free copy to start learning about the endless potential of open source. As you explore, you can reach out to us with any questions at [email protected]. Also, take a look at the additional resources we assembled that didn’t quite fit in the book itself.

Download Your Free Copy

Please complete this form and click the Download button below to receive your free copy of Open Source For Dummies, OpenTeams Special Edition. Required fields are marked with an asterisk (*).

Additional Resources

Below, we’ve listed additional resources you can explore to learn more about open source. They’re organized by the chapters and major sections of Open Source For Dummies, OpenTeams Special Edition.

If you’re looking for the more advanced case study demonstrating the use of Python and Jupyter notebooks in Google Colab (Chapter 3), click through to this demo notebook. You’ll need a Google account in order to run the code in the notebook, but you can view it without one.

Click these links to jump to the resources for a specific chapter.


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Chapter 1: Open Source 101

Categorizing Open Source Projects

Exploring the Origins of Open Source

Looking at Where We Are Now

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Chapter 2: Seeing That the Future Is Open Source

Securing Open Source

Standardizing Open Source

Funding Open Source

All of these are partial lists of entities in these categories.

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Chapter 3: Getting Started as an Open Source User

The more advanced case study mentioned at the end of the chapter can be found in this demo Google Colab notebook.

Other resources:

Commercial notebook-as-a-service tools include:

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Chapter 4: Getting Started as an Open Source Contributor

Understanding Key Tools for Codebase Interactions

Becoming an Open Source Contributor

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Chapter 5: Getting Help With Open Source

Finding the Right Open Source Tools

Evaluating the Health of Open Source Projects

Understanding Documentation

Finding Help With OpenTeams

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Chapter 6: Building Business Activity Around Open Source

Marketing and Complementing Your Product

Providing Enhanced Services Around an Open Source Project

Monetizing Your Network

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Chapter 7: Implementing Open Source in Your Existing Business

Deciding When and How to Adopt

Creating an Open Source Program Office (OSPO)

Digging Into License and Legal

General resources:

Examples of licenses (all on

Evaluating Risk

Defining Versioning Systems

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Chapter 8: Ten Reasons Why Open Source Is the New Frontier

Open Is More Than Just Software

It Expands Business Opportunities

It’s Built on Decentralized Governance

It Supports New Currency

It Upholds Innovation

Commercial Success Is Thriving

Content Is King

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