GitHub's Latest State Of The Octoverse
Written by Janet Swift   
Thursday, 12 October 2017

GitHub is a phenomenal success as its latest annual report, The State of the Octoverse 2017, reveals. In 2017 the GitHub community reached 24 million developers affiliated to 1.5 million organisations working across 67 million repositories, 25 million of them public repositories and located in 200 countries of the world.



During the year since the previous report there were a total of a billion public commits over 25.3 active repos. There were 12.5 million active issues and 1.3 million new pull requests. 2017 saw the one hundred millionth pull request, for a documentation update and 68,800,000 issues were closed.

With this much activity GitHub is a rich source of data and perhaps the most obvious question to ask is which languages are used there:

GitHub is home to open source projects written in 337 unique programming languages—but especially JavaScript.

JavaScript is the language for 2.3 million of the pull requests on GitHub, which is more than double that of the second most popular language, Python.


Commenting on the top languages, the report states: 

Python replaced Java as the second-most popular language on GitHub, with 40 percent more pull requests opened this year than last. Typescript was also on the rise in 2017, used in almost four times as many pull requests as last year.

A new GitHub feature for 2017 was Topics - repository tags that let users explore projects by technology, industry, and more. Not surprisingly "game" was a popular tag, exceeded only by "machine learning":



Like last year, GitHub provides information about repositories with the most forks and this year ranking serves to reinforce the importance of Machine Learning as Tensorflow and Tensor Models come in 1st and 5th position:


This time around MOOC-related repos, which occupied several slots in last year's league table of most forked repositories, haven't been included, but there's a note that the number of forks accumulated by an R programming assignment on Coursera suggest that more than 100,000 students have started it. The exclusion of MOOCs has allowed Bootstrap, which was in 4th place last year to rise to 2nd.

When it comes to projects with the most contributors, the majority of them were in the corresponding list for last year, but for 2017 Microsoft VSCode, which was in 6th place, has risen to 1st place, whereas Fort Awsome, in 1st place in 2016,  has slumped to 6th


It is clear from comparing 2016's figures with 2017's that more contributors are getting involved. The report includes some information about the year's new contributors revealing that almost half are students, 28% are professionals and 22% are hobbyists. In terms of experience only 10% are very experienced while 45% are totally new to programming:




Developers are of course at the heart of GitHub. As we reported at the time, in April 2017 GitHub extended its Developer Program to include developers with a free account on GitHub as well as those with paid accounts. This has led to a dramatic increase in membership:


All in all, with an expanding community, the GitHub Octoverse appears to continue to be a thriving ecosystem for projects both great and small.



More Information

The State of the Octoverse 2017 

Related Articles

GitHub Octoverse Reveals The State Of Open Source

GitHub Extends Developer Program

GitHub Introduces Code Owners

GitHub Platform and Community Improvements


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Last Updated ( Thursday, 12 October 2017 )