Getting involved with Drupal core development is scary. There's a lot of really smart people involved and it can be intimidating. The learning curve can be steep and an "easy" task can turn into hours of frustration. Your inner voice tries to convince you that you don't know enough to contribute to Drupal core, and your fear of embarrassing yourself has you referring to Drupal core contributors as "them" instead of "us".
Luckily, the Drupal community provides a cure for all this. DrupalCon sprints. Imagine a day where the entire community comes together looking (stalking, perhaps) for new contributors, regardless of their skill level, sits them down at tables with some of the most experience developers in our community, and takes the time to take them from zero to productive in less than a day. Sound exciting? It should - and if you're going to be in Austin next week, then there's only one place you should be on Friday, June 6.
Just a few months ago, despite the fact that I've been a Drupal developer for over eight years, I decided it was (finally) time for me to get more involved in Drupal core development. Now that I've taken the first few steps, I'm going to use this opportunity to pull as many people along with me as possible. As one of the organizers for the DrupalCon Austin Migrate in Core testing sprint, I'm letting you know that if I can do it, then so can you. If you're going to be in Austin, find us and we'll help get you going. In fact, even if you're not going to be in Austin, you can still help, and it's my mission to make it as easy as possible to get involved.
The Migrate in Core project is currently trying to stomp out all of the Drupal 6 to Drupal 8 migration bugs. Most of the team has been staring at the code long enough that we need some fresh eyes to do some manual testing and tell us what we've missed. Drupal 8 is going to be the biggest and best release of Drupal ever, and the easier we can make it for Drupal 6 sites to migrate to Drupal 8, the better off we'll all be.
In order to help out, you should have a basic understanding of Git (in order to clone a fresh copy of Drupal 8), Drush (in order to run migration commands), the ability to set up a local development environment, as well as an understanding basic Drupal fundamentals. Knowledge of PHP is not required (although we'll take it if you have it!) We're looking for people to help us manually test specific parts of the D6->D8 migration and open new issues if/when they find something.
If you'd like, we can pair you up with someone to work with, or we can just provide guidance to get you going on your own. We've got instructions and a plan and now we need people to help us execute the plan. Think you might be interested? Watch the two videos below for a walk-through - if you want to help out, let me know via Twitter @ultimike, the #drupal-migrate channel on IRC, or contact me directly and myself or someone else on the team will get you started.