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Kubernetes Community - Top of the Open Source Charts in 2017

2017 was a huge year for Kubernetes, and GitHub’s latest Octoverse report illustrates just how much attention this project has been getting.

Kubernetes, an open source platform for running application containers, provides a consistent interface that enables developers and ops teams to automate the deployment, management, and scaling of a wide variety of applications on just about any infrastructure.

Solving these shared challenges by leveraging a wide community of expertise and industrial experience, as Kubernetes does, helps engineers focus on building their own products at the top of the stack, rather than needlessly duplicating work that now exists as a standard part of the “cloud native” toolkit.

However, achieving these gains via ad-hoc collective organizing is its own unique challenge, one which makes it increasingly difficult to support open source, community-driven efforts through periods of rapid growth.

Read on to find out how the Kubernetes Community has addressed these scaling challenges to reach the top of the charts in GitHub’s 2017 Octoverse report.

Most-Discussed on GitHub

The top two most-discussed repos of 2017 are both based on Kubernetes:

Most Discussed

Of all the open source repositories on GitHub, none received more issue comments than kubernetes/kubernetes. OpenShift, a CNCF certified distribution of Kubernetes, took second place.

Open discussion with ample time for community feedback and review helps build shared infrastructure and establish new standards for cloud native computing.

Most Reviewed on GitHub

Successfully scaling an open source effort’s communications often leads to better coordination and higher-quality feature delivery. The Kubernetes project’s Special Interest Group (SIG) structure has helped it become GitHub’s second most reviewed project:

Most Reviewed

Using SIGs to segment and standardize mechanisms for community participation helps channel more frequent reviews from better-qualified community members.

When managed effectively, active community discussions indicate more than just a highly contentious codebase, or a project with an extensive list of unmet needs.

Scaling a project’s capacity to handle issues and community interactions helps to expand the conversation. Meanwhile, large communities come with more diverse use cases and a larger array of support problems to manage. The Kubernetes SIG organization structure helps to address the challenges of complex communication at scale.

SIG meetings provide focused opportunities for users, maintainers, and specialists from various disciplines to collaborate together in support of this community effort. These investments in organizing help create an environment where it’s easier to prioritize architecture discussion and planning over commit velocity; enabling the project to sustain this kind of scale.

Join the party!

You may already be using solutions that are successfully managed and scaled on Kubernetes. For example,, which hosts Kubernetes’ upstream source code, now runs on Kubernetes as well!

Check out the Kubernetes Contributors’ guide for more information on how to get started as a contributor.

You can also join the weekly Kubernetes Community meeting and consider joining a SIG or two.