Our favorite GitHub repos

The trendy five: Usher in autumn with our favorite September 2019 GitHub repos

Sarah Schlothauer
© Shutterstock/ Coatesy

Another month has passed us by, and you know what that means. Time to reflect upon our favorite GitHub repos for the month! In September, we checked out some cool projects, including a modern shell written in Rust, an award-winning JavaScript tool for working in immutable state, and a font that might just make coding a little easier on the eyes.

Every month, we go over the GitHub trending page for any cool repos that stand out from the crowd. We choose five of the most innovative, interesting, and well-thought out projects to highlight in our monthly report. As always, it was tough to narrow down the list of GitHub repos to our five favorites.

So, in no particular order, here are our top picks for September 2019!

Nu Shell


Modern development in action. Source.

Nu Shell is a modern shell written in Rust “for the GitHub era”. According to The Nu Book, it takes the philosophy of shells and brings it to a polished modern development style. Nu uses traditional shells like bash along with advanced shells like PowerShell.

It’s a great time to check it out because a book on Nu for developers is currently in progress. (Follow its draft progress on GitHub.)

Recently, Jonathan Turner, Andrés Robalino, and Yehuda Katz were featured on The Changelog, a software podcast. They discussed Nu Shell, what it is, how it works, and why Rust was their language of choice.

Follow it on Twitter and keep up with related news.



The Octocat is looking a little….curly. Source.

Time for a little fun. Tiler is a tool written in Python that builds images with, well, other images. It creates pictures out of smaller images, similar to a mosaic tool.

Images can be built out of circles, lines, waves, @ symbols, cross stitches, and even Lego bricks (I see that pull request!) and Minecraft blocks.

You will need Python 3, the cloned repo, pip (optional) and the dependencies  pip install -r requirements.txt

SEE ALSO: Behind the code: Language designers, scripting the 21st century developer playbook


Immer has some serious acclaim under its belt. It is the winner of the “Breakthrough of the Year” React open source award and won JavaScript’s “Most impactful contribution” in 2019. Currently in v4.0.0, Immer is based on the copy-on-write mechanism. It is a tiny package that allows users to work with immutable state in a more convenient way by using proxies.

Read the introductory post and learn more about its features.

(Or check out the TL;DR:)

  1. Immer enables you to use standard JavaScript data structures and APIs to produce immutable states
  2. Strongly typed; if your state object has a type, you will get full assistance based on that
  3. Structural sharing out of the box
  4. Object freezing out of the box
  5. Significant boilerplate reduction. Less noise, more concise code

Michel Weststrate


Transformers offers state-of-the-art general-purpose architectures for natural language processing. It was built by Hugging Face for TensorFlow 2.0 and PyTorch and includes over 32 pretrained models in over 100 languages. Its README compares itself to Keras, saying it is just as powerful and concise.

Its 8 model architectures include:

Check it out and write with Transformer in the official demo. 

SEE ALSO: Machine learning – How do Chess Engines work?



JavaScript code example. Source.

FiraCode is a monospaced font with programming ligatures that’s easy on the eyes and can potentially help programmers read code faster.

The main reasoning behind it:

Programmers use a lot of symbols, often encoded with several characters. For the human brain, sequences like ->, <= or := are single logical tokens, even if they take two or three characters on the screen. Your eye spends a non-zero amount of energy to scan, parse and join multiple characters into a single logical one.

The font features strong arrows, fine-tuned spacing, thin backslashes in escape seqs, and many more design elements. While it doesn’t yet work in every terminal or editor, it supports an impressive variety, including Atom 1.1 and newer, IntelliJ IDEA, and NetBeans to name a few.

Will FiraCode make you a code speed reader?

That’s all for this month! See you in November with the next batch of GitHub repos.

Sarah Schlothauer

Sarah Schlothauer

All Posts by Sarah Schlothauer

Sarah Schlothauer is the editor for She received her Bachelor's degree from Monmouth University, West Long Branch, New Jersey. She currently lives in Frankfurt, Germany with her husband and cat where she enjoys reading, writing, and medieval reenactment. She is also the editor for Conditio Humana, an online magazine about ethics, AI, and technology.

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