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Open Source Theory

Learn the goals of the CanJS, StealJS, DoneJS open source efforts and how those efforts are managed.

Justin Meyer

Justin Meyer

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I recently presented to Bitovi about how we manage CanJS, StealJS, and DoneJS's open source efforts. I thought this would be useful information for our community so I recorded myself giving the presentation. 

The video walks through:

  • what we are trying to accomplish with open source
  • how we are trying to accomplish our goals and why
  • a review of the improvements made over the last 10 months
  • how you can help get involved in this open source effort

You can find the slides here.

The following are a few highlights of the video:

Our theory on how we can make our Open Source tools successful:

Through careful observation of users’ needs, and informed prioritization, we will make our open source tools ergonomic (efficient and comfortable) for beginner and intermediate developers.

This will result in love of our tools and advocacy from our existing users.

Once existing users are advocating for us, we will move up the sales funnel, focusing on conversion of new users to advocates. Eventually we will move to awareness marketing.

We are inverting the traditional marketing funnel prioritization:


And focusing on making our existing users love us.



To figure out what we should do, prioritize our efforts, and work efficiently, we operate within a 6 week product epoch cycle:


Open Source Theory (1)

Every 2 weeks is a sprint. There are 3 sprints in a product epoch cycle. Within the product epoch cycle we perform:

  • User testing at our meetups and a formal user study
  • A survey of our users to know how they feel about our product and what improvements matter most to them
  • A review of how we are doing
  • A planning session for the features we believe will impact users the most

How are we doing?

Are you a user of our tools? How do you feel we are doing? What do you think we could do better? There's a survey going on right now. Please let us know!