Seven NumFOCUS sponsored projects participated in Docathon 2017: IPython, Project Jupyter, Julia, Matplotlib, pandas, SunPy, and yt. The Docathon is like a hackathon but is focused on developing material and tools for documentation.

Documentation is one of the most important components of the open science ecosystem—and it’s everywhere! From examples that provide inspiration for things you can do with a package to a tutorial that teaches you the concepts and ideas behind what a project is trying to do, documentation helps provide an entry point and a guide for open source projects.

Unfortunately, documentation is also often under-developed and under-appreciated, which is where the Docathon comes in.

The Docathon is a one-week long coding sprint that aims to motivate open source developers to spend less time building new features and squashing bugs and more time creating examples, tutorials, API descriptions, and guides to help their users learn more about their projects.

Docathon participation graph

As you can see, we saw a flurry of commits representing improvements to documentation across the open source community. Some projects chose to improve the wording and structure of their examples, while others updated their docstrings to adhere with the “numpydoc” structure. Some projects even used the week to entirely revamp their websites.

Visit the BIDS blog for the full summary write-up of the week, including links to tutorial videos and the biggest doc-star of the week, an open source Python project called… (click to learn more!)