Check out what North Dakota University students, Gabe and Max had to say about working on Kata Containers.


Associate member, North Dakota State University runs a course every spring focused on getting students experience with larger real-world projects. This year, one group of students was able to dive into Kata Containers and work with the global community! We spoke to two students, Gabe and Max, who had the opportunity to work on Kata Containers and heard what it was like working on this specific project. 

What is a challenge you faced, and how did you overcome it?

Gabe – As the only one with prior experience with Linux, Git or Rust, getting the others up to speed quickly was a challenge, as teaching experience isn’t exactly a standard part of the CS curriculum! Thankfully, it wasn’t the first time I’d had to teach fellow students how to use Git, as that is also not a standard part of the CS course.

Max – I would say the biggest challenge was learning the Kata ways. By this I mean essentially how kata functions and how to contribute. After getting the first PR done, I felt a lot better.

What piece of advice would you give future interns?

Gabe – Really have a good understanding of Git and Linux fundamentals. While nothing can beat prior experience, a couple of weekends of mucking about on an old laptop (for Linux) and submitting one-liner pull requests (for Git) can do wonders. Your final PR shouldn’t really have git surprises, as you want to be able to focus on the Rust and the rest of the Kata codebase side of the problem.

To have a good understanding of what each folder in your project does. As it will help tell you what your file may need to context to each other.

Max – Make sure you are comfortable with a git workflow before attempting to try and program anything, as you won’t get very far if you aren’t.

What feedback do you have for the project community that would help future students as they contribute to Kata Containers?

Max – Remember to always use Slack, as it is a very useful resource to reach out for help.

How did you hear about Kata Containers?

Both – Through our Capstone class.

What’s the next project you want to learn about/contribute to?

Gabe – At least at first, I plan on continuing to contribute to Kata containers and, hopefully, add a few more features that didn’t quite make it to the initial PR. After that, I really want to contribute to open source, time willing, but I haven’t exactly settled on a particular project.

Max – Christ and I are almost done finalizing our PR, so that’s what I will be working on in the near future. 

What surprised you most about working on Kata Containers?

Gabe – The Rust language.

Max – The community. It was a much more friendly and nurturing environment than I expected!