One of my desired goal has been achieved. I've started contributing actively in open soured projects.
This was essential for me to get some experience and exposure in developing software.
On sourceforge website(http://sourceforge.net), I've been a member for quite a bit of time but was unable to join the desired projects.So here are some of my recommendations for starting up:
1. Look for a project of your interest that you can contribute in. For example, if you are comfortable in 'C' programming language, then look for a 'C' programmer requirement.
2. Not all projects require programming skills. So my advice is to arm yourself with all of your knowledge. You never know, when your documentation skills, for example, may be required.
3. Be honest and truthful about yourself.Well, this hardly merits a note, but again, t is quite important to be so.
4. READ the project details.
Yes! this is most important as project details by the admin determine what exactly, he or she is looking for. This is also important to stimulate your imterest in the project.
5. Do look for a nice project, not just the technology you want.
6. Lastly, i'd say as in every organization, you will start from the lowest rung of the ladder.
Having said that, I followed these principals somewhat loosely and have started as a GUI Developer in the Pundict project (https://sourceforge.net/projects/pundict/)
This is a Punjabi~English translation dictionary which uses the XDXF format (which is xml based) for maintaining its data.
The beauty of this application is that it runs on any platform ( as it is java based) and through its open-sourced dictionaries in XDXF format, it is extensible to a very large extent.
The implications of my application are that it can be used as a tool to learn new languages, and, in process, save many languages from becoming extinct.
Initial view of the dictionary