Meeting the people behind the most exciting homegrown OSS projects.

Open source spotlight: Git Pretty Stats

This month, we speak to Niklas Modess about Git Pretty Stats, which produces graphs for self-hosted Git repositories.

WPM: Who’s behind Git Pretty Stats?

Modess: I’m a web architect/developer based out of Stockholm, Sweden. I’ve been developing for a long time but I’m quite new to the open source community and now trying to contribute something to it. Git Pretty Stats is pretty much my first “real” contribution. Also trying to write about development on my blog ( but I need to get better at writing more frequently.

Why did you decide to create it?

There are quite a few tools out there for generating graphs and statistics for Git repositories written in various languages (mostly Python scripts). The main issue I had with these is that the visual presentation has not been a priority. And I like pretty things, hence the projects name. Also pretty much none of the tools have an on-demand graphs and statistics generator from the comfort in your web browser.

Also it shows the power of the open source community since it’s based on a number of awesome projects out there that have been put together to create it. A big shout out to those projects, the up-to-date list can be found in the repository.

Why is it useful to visualise Git repositories?

The usefulness could be argued; to me it’s more of a cool and fun feature. But being able to see who the regular and currently active contributors are could always be good to know.

Why did you write it in PHP?

Simply because PHP is my main language.

What additions and improvements are you planning?

I have some thoughts and ideas that I’m planning to do. Mainly support for multiple repositories, caching for large repositories and more graphs/statistics. A simple integration package for Laravel 4 as well would be nice.

How can people get involved, and what can they do to help out?

People are free to help out with anything they want on the project. I recently added to the repository how people can contribute. It’s quite simple:

  1. Check, open and discuss in the issues section on github.
  2. Fork the repository.
  3. Write your code and prove it works with tests.
  4. Submit a pull request.

I’d really like people to get involved and contribute to help improve the project and drive it forward! The project is still in its infancy.

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