The robustness of PageRank is based on the assumption that the following events have very low probability,

Low probability event 🅰️

Developers starring low-quality repos

Low probability event 🅱️

Communities accepting low-quality contributions

Under these assumptions it is not possible to manipulate your score or fake your way to the top. To see this, consider these score inflation strategies:

1️⃣ Inflating your commit footprint

  • You can inflate your commit footprint in a repo you control, but the repo won't be starred by high-reputation developers unless it's a worthwhile, interesting, or well-executed project.

  • You can only commit to a repo you don't control if your contribution is accepted by the community. When you contribute, by design of DevRank, your reputational reward will be proportional to the number of contributions you’ve made and have passed peer review.

2️⃣ Creating fake GitHub accounts that inflate stars in repos you've contributed to

  • In network theory terminology, these GitHub accounts would be "dangling nodes" in the network and would have negligible PageRank. Therefore, any stargazer coming from these accounts would have no effect in the PageRank of the remaining nodes in the network.

In summary, you will only obtain outsized DevRank if you create something that people truly love or if you make a large number of contributions to a project people already love, and those contributions pass peer review.

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