26 March 2009

Google Summer of Code 2009 (GSoC2009)

If you know any students who are interested in open source software, the Google Summer of Code is a great opportunity. Encourage them to apply. The application period is open now and ends April 3.

One thousand students will be paid $4500 by Google for a summer of working on open source projects and will be mentored by experienced open source developers. To my mind, the experience and mentoring is almost more valuable than the case (although obviously that varies greatly depending on the economic situation of the student).

If you look at the list of projects, you'll see that there's something for every taste. Projects range from low-level bit banging in C on bare iron to bioinformatics to games to a wide variety of so-called "social" apps in a wide variety of different programming languages. Students and mentors come from almost one hundred different countries as well, so there's an enormous amount of diversity on that front as well.

I've been a mentor for three of the four years the program has been in existence (2006, 2007, 2008) and last year had the satisfaction of seeing one of my original students become a mentor himself. It's a lot of work, but very satisfying. Unfortunately my project won't be participating this year due to a combination of cutbacks at Google (about 10%) and a desire to rotate in new organizations, but the ArgoEclipse team would still love to mentor any new folks, students or other, who are interested in getting their feet wet with open source development.

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