During Directions EMEA some weeks ago I not only had the chance to meet great people and have great talks with them, but also to get on stage. Together with Jesper and Maria from Microsoft we talked about open source contributions and bringing Business Central to the next level.
Open Source mindset and contributions
I’m not going to repeat the complete session here. But I think it’s important to remember the overall idea: we all shouldn’t compete on (relatively) simple commodities. We shouldn’t waste valuable time and resources creating stuff that (in a perfect world) should already be available (like Barcode handling or Azure Storage integration). That’s why I want to advocate that everyone of us should think about contributing functionality that just makes sense for everyone. It shouldn’t be necessary that we all develop the same things again and again. So let’s make BC an even better platform together 😊 Afterall: Together we win!
Another important thing to remember is, that Microsoft leadership has an eye on community contributions. Right now we have the ALAppExtensions-repo with the System App, Dev tools, test framework and some localization apps (and some additional repos like “microsoft/AL” and others). But wouldn’t it be nice to also have the Base App or even the platform open source? Also, right now the Github-repo is merely a mirror of an internal repo from MS, since they’ll still need to take some steps to have the Github-repo as the primary build source. When they see that the community adopts an open source mindset and contributions, they’ll invest in making more and more parts of the system open source as well.
New operations for Azure Blob Services API
Since I added the first contribution to the Azure Storage Services API/Blob Services API module, I want to advocate for more contributions to this, of course 😉 There are lots of operations, that the API has to offer. And right now the module in the System App only covers some of them. I just created another PR to add support for Lease-operations. If you also plan to contribute to this and have any questions at all – feel free to reach out. Please also don’t hesitate to open your PR early (even with only little to none code added) to indicate that you’re working on a specific topic (be it to add tests or support for new operations).
I’ll write another blog post shortly on giving some additional input on how to get you started (I remember I struggled a little bit with my first contribution). In the meantime don’t hesitate to get started or to contact me (or Jesper, Maria or anyone else from MS or the community).