GitHub is a software repository hosting service, through which users can access, share and edit code to build software. It is a collaborative innovation network used by millions of people around the world to develop digital projects.
GitHub, a San Francisco-based company, was started in 2008 as a way for open source software writers in various locations to rapidly create new and better versions of their work collaboratively. It has since grown to be the largest social coding repository in the world, with over 15 million users and 38 million projects.
GitHub is aimed at personal users and businesses. Users can see what other users are working on, learn how developers build software and share their own work with the world. For businesses, different developers can collaborate one one integrated platform.
GitHub’s social impact comes from its repository of open source projects - the largest one in the world. Open source software is free to use and explore, and to build upon. This democratises access to software skills development and also enables collaborative projects which can lead to software aimed at social impact. Many of the other digital social innovations on this website will have been developed using GitHub and are stored on GitHub, including Goteo, mySociety, and the Ushahidi.
Image: Volker Aqueras Gang, CC 2.0.
Case study date: October 2016