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What is GitHub?

What is GitHub? What a great question!

It’s probably something you’ve heard about many a time if you are in the web development world but it’s not clear at first glance what exactly it is and why it is so special to so many people.

GitHub is a place for developers to store and manage their revisions of projects. GitHub is primarily used for web code, however it can be used for all sorts of files from Word Documents to Pro Tools sessions, it is basically a filing system for every draft, revision or version of a document or project.

The main appeal of GitHub is ‘forking’. Forking is a way of copying a repository from one user’s account to another. What this does is enable you to use a project that you don’t have write access to, you can then edit it and if you want to then share these changes you can notifiy the original owner, who can in turn merge your changes with the original at the click of a button.

It’s in this fork, pull and merge requests that the real power of GitHub lies and is a massive improvement on the way things used to be done with patches. The bonus is that when an owner of a project recieves your changes he can view your profile to see what previous changes you have had accepted by other owners and gives you a kind of rating or a CV of your development history, giving the owner a kind of trust rating in your development skills.

Patches can also be discussed on the forum and projects like Node.js would probably not have got to where they are today, at least not quite as quickly without the GitHub community.

The best way to get into the GitHub world is just to sign up and start navigating around.

If you need any help with your web development projects then why not get in contact with us here at Network Intellect.

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