Re: Google Summer of Code 2008
>On 28/02/08 at 01:09 -0800, Steve Langasek wrote:
>> Yes, subjective to the point of absurdity. If failure is defined in terms
>> of *your* expectations, I don't see how we can even have a meaningful
>> dialogue about it.
>Note that my main point in the thread is "we should use GSOC to get
>fresh blood in Debian, not to fund existing contributors". The point
>about "Debian GSOC projects have been unsuccessful in the past" is
>I am under the impression that results from last years' GSOC projects
>weren't up to par with what could have reasonably been expected from
>them, based on the skills of the students and the time they were
>supposed to spend on the projects. Maybe I'm wrong, but it will be
>difficult for you to convince me of that, since we lack data :-)
But that's not going to stop you making accusations of previous GSoC
students and mentors misleading Google about how time was spent,
though. That's *nice* to see.
>> > but I think that the evaluation done by the mentors is subjective too. How
>> > were the GSOC projects evaluated?
>> I don't know how they were evaluated, but why are you only now asking this
>> question, and of debian-devel instead of the program mentors?
>Mainly because GSOC 2008 was announced on d-d-a with a reply-to set to
* Mail-followup-to: firstname.lastname@example.org
* Reply-to: email@example.com
I deliberately set the Reply-to to point to debian-project, but it
seems that the d-d-a list then helpfully added a different target in
the M-F-T header... :-(
>Also, my goal is not to do a witch hunt about last years'
>projects. Frankly, I don't care. My goal is to see if we can improve
>things this year (if there's something to improve).
If your goal was not to have a witch hunt, then being a *lot* less
aggressive and accusatory in your mails here would help.
>> I'm not saying that students that were DD did nothing of their time
>> during GSoc, but most of them produced results that were a bit
>> disappointing given what people could have expected from them, mainly
>> because they used their GSOC time to work on other Debian tasks.
Do you have any proof at all for that accusation? If so, please share
it. Otherwise, I think that people deserve apologies from you right
Here's a hint: even when working full-time hours on a job (35-40 hours
a week, typically), it's entirely possible to do other things in your
other time. I have a full-time job working for a company in Cambridge,
yet I spend some of my spare time to work on Debian projects, DebConf
etc. alongside that. Are you going to accuse me of stealing time from
my employer to do them?
In past years, the GSoC mentors and admins have ranked student
applications based on a few criteria:
* How interesting the project is for Debian (and how well it fits
with us and our needs)
* How good we reckon the student is: motivation, skills, enthusiasm,
* Whether or not we have a suitable mentor
The ideal student applying will take inspiration from the project
ideas we've posted, but will take the extra time to turn those
suggestions into their own proposal. Background research and a genuine
understanding of the problem are good indicators here.
In 2006, only 6 of our allotted 10 projects completed successfully.
The Google folks informally told us that that was not good enough - we
were well below the average of the programme as a whole. We were
allowed back in for 2007, but were only awarded funding for 9 projects
of the 20 or so that we asked for.
Given that, there was a lot of debate about exactly which projects we
should choose. I'm happy that we picked a very good set. There was
scope to have made different selections here and there, but the 9 that
we chose all succeeded: they all met their goals.
I'm not greatly convinced by your arguments that DDs and DMs should
automatically be barred from applying for GSoC. In my opinion, they
are just as welcome as anybody else. Each application should be
evaluated fairly on its own merits.
Steve McIntyre, Cambridge, UK. firstname.lastname@example.org
"I've only once written 'SQL is my bitch' in a comment. But that code
is in use on a military site..." -- Simon Booth