Coding Without Borders
Home The Project The Team Future Work

Coding Without Borders

Making contributions to medical open source software

Medical open source software can be a vital technological resource for healthcare communities around the world. MOSS projects and organizations make important medical tools accessible to hospitals and clinics regardless of size, location, or resources. Our senior comprehensive project focused on contributing to these open source projects. Motivated by the idea of making a real change the world, we connected with three open source organizations over the course of our project — OpenMRS, LibreHealth, and Cornerstone.js. At each of these organizations, we integrated into the community, explored their project, and made contributions. As we narrowed our focus to certain projects, we gradually learned more about the workflows and requirements involved in medical imaging. Finally, after reflecting on the impact we wanted to make on these communities, we decided to use this accrued knowledge and focus our attention entirely on contributing to Cornerstone.

Cornerstone is a third-party JavaScript library that allows medical images to be viewed directly in a browser. It enables medical image viewers to be fast, lightweight, and usable on mobile devices, without sacrificing important tools for image analysis. It's used in many other medical open source software projects, including the Open Health Imaging Foundation, Crowds Cure Cancer, NeurDICOM and more, and we hoped that, by focusing our efforts on Cornerstone, our work would have an impact on all these additional organizations.

During our work with Cornerstone, we contributed to both Cornerstone Core and Cornerstone Tools, improved its API, fixed memory leaks, and increased test coverage to make future contributions easier to moderate.

To learn more about this work, the contributions we made to other open source projects, and the timeline of our journey, check out our Project page.