- The best advice I can find is to read the bug tracker <https://code.google.com/p/vim/> and look for patches that need review. Review them! And sign up + show up to the vim mailing list.
- Additionally, embed yourself as much as you can in the user community. The #vim channel on freenode seems quite active, and has its own website: http://vi-improved.org/
- Dive into pathogen <https://github.com/tpope/vim-pathogen> and try to find an IRC channel for it, and try to see what plugins are being actively developed. See if you can hack on them.
- https://code.google.com/p/vim/issues/detail?id=91&sort=-priority -- figure out the root cause here. Requires Linux. Note that to do a great job at this, see also hg bisect.
- Read http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Annoying_little_bugs to find a task
- Read http://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/How_to_become_a_MediaWiki_hacker to figure out how to join the community
The maintainer is slightly curmudgeonly but on the whole well-meaning.
See e.g. http://jordi.inversethought.com/blog/how-to-write-a-patch-for-octave/ for patch submission guidelines.
FSL is not a truly open source software project, in that its software license forbids commercial use .
fslview, a tool to view FSL data is, fully open source aka free software, and is e.g. available in Neurodebian <http://neuro.debian.net/pkgs/fslview.html>.
People interested in FSL might be interested in generally helping out NeuroDebian, a project to package Neuroscience-related tools for easy installation into Ubuntu and Debian, and who also make a virtual machine image to help researchers on non-Linux OSs use Neurodebian. More here: http://neuro.debian.net/
SPM is open source software, licensed under the GPL, but doesn't seem to have any way for non-UCL people to get involved.
If you're interested in SPM, one way to help out is to simply try the latest version and talk to the maintainers about if it works. They might have other hints about how to help out, too.
You can also check out the FieldTrip project, Matlab software toolbox which welcomes contributions:
ChucK doesn't use a formal bug tracker, but is a super cool project. There are some bugs listed on their wiki, on pages starting here: http://wiki.cs.princeton.edu/index.php/ChucK/Bugs
To participate meaningfully in the ChucK project, you should:
- Get a development environment set up. You'll need to compile the latest version from git.
- Say hello on the development list.
- See if you can clean up http://wiki.cs.princeton.edu/index.php/ChucK/Bugs/Reports so that each bug is in a separate section of the page, and/or so that the bugs that are fixed are more clearly marked as such.