Github's secret new user README's- 2 mins read
From what I gather, it looks like Github covertly launched a new feature that allows users to create a
README.md that renders on their user profile page, which is a pretty big shakeup of the github profile page, in my opinion. I heard about it through one of my friends, who heard about it from a friend, who heard about it on Twitter.
This is what it looks like (from my current profile):
To get your own, you need to create a new repository in your account with the same name as your account, so in my case, with my account name being mzjp2 I needed to create a public repository called
mzjp2, accessible at github.com/mzjp2/mzjp2 with, at least, a
You can add additional files to your repository (I have a folder of
svg icons located in there that I use as images in my
README), but the only thing that ultimately gets rendered is the
README.md. It follows the same rendering rules and follows the same Github markdown spec as all the other
README’s you’re used to in any other repo.
One caveat that I ran into is that you shouldn’t use relative links in the
README. For example, I had an
<img src="icons/linkedin.svg"> reference in my
README.md which rendered fine locally since my repository structure had
README.md on the same level and rendered fine on the
README view inside the
mzjp2/mzjp2 repo, but did not render well on my Github user profile. I switched to using aboslute links (pointing at Github’s user content static URL) and everything worked fine after that.
As you can imagine, people have gone wild with this new feature, building everything from a guestbook to a communal chess game on their profile. Some of the ones I’ve seen so far:
github.com/WaylonWalker that uses Netlify’s
_redirectfeature to always point to his latest blog post on his README and also incorporated the clever
visitorbadge that I shamelessly stole.
github.com/timburgan a Github staff member (I wonder how much time he had to play around with this ) that built a community chess tournament using buttons (to move your chess piece) that opens a Github issue prepopulated text, which triggers a Github action that updates the
README.mdfile with the new state of the game.
- github.com/saadeghi who has the infamous Chrome dino game as a GIF playing. Minimalism, anyone?
and plenty more. If there are any interesting ones you’ve come across, feel free to ping me an email and I’d love to check it out!