The Good Docs Project: Git training

At The Good Docs Project, we build best practice templates and writing instructions for documenting open source software. (Which incidentally are useful for all software and related domains.)

Length of project

May 2022 - ongoing

Product overview

The Good Docs Project is an open-source project that is focused on building templates for a variety of content types used in most software documentation projects, such as API quickstarts, tutorials, and installation guides. We also create templates that can help teams with process improvements and documentation planning.

Contributors in our community come from various backgrounds, and we all have a passion for documentation.

Our template projects consist of several documents to help developers and other writers:

  • A template file that provides a rough outline of the suggested content
  • A template guide that explains how to fill in the template
  • A process document that explains best practices for researching, writing, and maintaining the content type
  • A resources document that includes resources consulted during the research process

Project description

In early 2022, we had an influx of new members following Write the Docs 2022. Many of these new members were eager to contribute to the project, but they were not familiar with Git. We use Git and GitLab at The Good Docs Project, so knowing Git is an essential skill to have. So I collaborated with Alyssa, a fellow working group lead, to create our first iteration of our Git training.

The Git training is a 3-hour workshop that teaches students the basics of using Git. It covers general concepts about Git, using Markdown and the command line, and how to make their first open-source contribution from beginning to end.

During the first iteration of the training, students fixed an issue on The Good Docs Project website. However, we didn’t have enough issues for a second workshop.

To solve this issue, I created a website called The Good Dogs Project that we use for the training. Students clone the repository for the website, fix an issue, and then merge in their changes. It’s always a great feeling when a student sees their change on the live site!

Tools I used

  • Authoring: Markdown
  • Docs as code tools: Hugo, Netlify

Work samples