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Re: Google Summer of Code 2008

On Wed, Feb 27, 2008 at 09:42:17AM +0100, Lucas Nussbaum wrote:
> On 27/02/08 at 00:42 +0000, Steve McIntyre wrote:
> > Hey folks,
> > 
> > Google are running their Summer of Code programme again this year[1],
> > and if we want to take part again we need to apply between March 3rd
> > and March 12th. If we're accepted as a mentoring organisation, then
> > students will be able to apply to work with us up until the 1st
> > April. [2]
> Hi,
> I have had a problem with the way GSOC was handled in Debian in the past
> years.
> Many of the students that were selected were already well-known Debian
> contributors or developers. The first problem with that is that some of
> those students used their GSOC time to work on their usual Debian tasks
> instead of their GSOC project, leading to disapointing results,
> unsuccessful projects, less projects being accepted the next year, etc.
> The other problem is that some Debian developers who could have applied
> as well didn't, because they thought that GSOC was only for new
> contributors.
> I think that GSOC is a great opportunity to get fresh blood inside
> Debian, and that we should use it for that, not to get funding for usual
> Debian work. We should have a policy of not allowing existing Debian
> developers to apply as students. If DDs want to use GSOC to get some
> work done inside Debian, they could become mentors instead.
> However, I'm not sure that many DDs agree with this, so maybe we should
> just aim for *clarification*. So any of the three following solutions
> would work for me:
> (1) Forbid DDs and people in the NM process waiting for FD/DAM to apply
> as students.
> (2) Make it crystal clear (through a mail to d-d-a) that DDs that are
> otherwise eligible can apply as well.
> (3) Compromise: allow current contributors to apply, but, when
> classifying applications, do it like that:
>    1. Application from outsider
>    2. Application from current contributor
>    3. Application from outsider
>    4. Application from current contributor
>    [...]
> What do you think?

I noticed some of these also.
IIRC most of the past GSOC people were:

a) european, 
b) male 
c) existing floss contributer
d) in Computer science/Informatics

(stats about past demographics welcome)
maybe prioritize people who are not these. FLOSS would benefit from more
Also, GSOC mentions giving the students an opportunity to do work related
to their academic pursuits and give students more exposure to real-world
development environment. People who are already contributing to Debian
already have 'exposure to real-world development environment'. And if
someone is a current Debian contributer who joins GSOC, it should not be
an existing Debian-related task unless it is related to their academic
My 2 yen,
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