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Projects for Volunteer Developers
Sefaria is an open source project and we very much want participation from engineers around the world. We've found that working on the core code base is often (though not always) a bit to daunting for a volunteer without significant help from our team. We happily look at pull requests, but we can't spending to much time working on projects that aren't priorities for us as an organizations.
Instead, we've identified two primary paths for making a valuable contribution to Sefaria as a volunteer developer: (1) building your own apps with our data or APIs (2) parsing a new text and posting it to our database.
Building Your Own App
We want to see new creative ideas built on top of our data. In addition to the benefits of what gets created, it helps us to show to our funders that a rich community of developers are making use of our data and building new applications.
Building your own app means you're free to choose the tech stack that you're comfortable in (or are itching to experiment with). It also means that you don't be dependent on the Sefaria team and you won't be blocking or interfering with active projects the team is working on.
Our APIs are open and our data is available for you to download now.
Parsing a Text
Most of the texts that are being adding to Sefaria now are coming from either OCR operations that we run or deals with make with publishers. In both cases we receive a digital copy of the text, but the text is not well structured. The work of defining the structure of a text and parsing and segmenting is into this structure generally takes a little thinking and a little Python script. Actually, any language can be used to parse and then posted to our API, but we have developed a suite of helpful tools that run in Python.