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Debian participates in the 2008 Google "Summer of Code"

The Debian Project                                http://www.debian.org/
Debian participates in the 2008 Google Summer of Code   press@debian.org
April 27th, 2008                http://www.debian.org/News/2008/20080427

Debian is participating in the 2008 Google Summer of Code

The Debian project is proud to announce that it has again been accepted
by Google as a mentor organisation for the Summer of Code programme. We
have been allocated twelve tasks for this year. Google will fund the
students mentioned here to work full time on those tasks during their
summer vacation, from May 26th to August 18th. They will be guided and
evaluated during this time by a team of Debian developers.

Several tasks cover communication between software authors, users and
Debian developers. A number of tasks target quality assurance and
improved testing, while others will result in new tools that help
maintain Debian systems.

 * Jonathan Roes will work on Netconf, a next generation approach for
   network configuration management on Linux systems. This will
   provide a single logical replacement for a large number of programs
   currently handling related tasks on Debian systems.
 * CRAN is a comprehensive archive of tools and libraries for the GNU
   R statistical computing language. Charles Blundell will write
   cran2deb, a tool to help with automatic generation of Debian
   packages from CRAN packages and bundles. This makes it much easier
   for developers and users to work with R extensions on Debian
   systems, especially for administrators of larger computing
 * Nico Golde will improve Debian's quality assurance processes for
   security updates by providing a security update beta test facility.
   This will allow Debian to test security updates on a broader range
   of setups prior to public release and in addition to the existing
   QA measures.
 * Jigdo is a tool developed to help reduce the cost of downloading
   and mirroring Debian CD and DVD images. Dustin Rayner's project
   jigdo-ivory entails the creation of a browser-based Jigdo client to
   make downloads much easier for end users.
 * Obey Arthur Liu is planning to create a GTK+ GUI for the package
   management tool Aptitude that will work alongside improved ncurses
   and command-line interfaces. This will offer a new interface design
   geared toward usability and advanced functionality.
 * Jonny Lamb will work on debexpo, a web-based Debian package
   repository to allow everyone to upload and provide personal package
   repositories. It includes functionality for sponsors to easily
   review packages and should ease contribution to Debian by offering
   an easy way to contribute packages for software not yet included in
 * Christian von Essen will be developing the "Ultimate Debian
   Database", a large relational database that will collect together
   the project's important information into one central easy-to-use
   system including bugs, build information, developer information,
 * Adam Jensen will create debgraph, an infrastructure to process
   package inter-dependencies and similar data using a generic graph
   interface. Many applications such as package managers already use
   some of this functionality, but this project will be the first
   common code to support more complex queries, allowing developers of
   other tools to concentrate on higher-level issues.
 * Per Andersson plans to work on improving Debians support for
   consumer market NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices. These
   popular devices are tiny files servers, often equipped with ARM
   processors and running an embedded Linux. This project will make it
   easier to install and customize Debian on these devices and further
   increase Debians popularity in the embedded Linux market.
 * Lintian is an automated package checking tool used for quality
   assurance, able to detect all kinds of common errors and mistakes
   in Debian packages. Jordà Polo Bardés will enhance the diagnosis
   functionality in lintian, especially with respect to handling the
   severity and accuracy of such tests, to make it more usable in
   automated setups where low-importance test and false positives may
   cause issues.
 * Max Wiehle is going to add support for automatically merging
   configuration files on system upgrades. At the moment, Debian's
   package management tools currently just keep track of old and new
   configurations as upgrades take place, so this new work will make
   life much easier for system administrators.
 * Juan Luis Belmonte Mendez will be writing a new tool to help
   configure PAM (Pluggable Authentication Modules) and NSS (Name
   Service Switch) through the Debian Installer. This should allow for
   much easier configuration of Debian machines to use common network
   based authentication systems like LDAP and Active Directory.

We welcome them to our vibrant developer community and encourage all of
our teams and contributors to support and help them to succeed with
their tasks.

Debian's tasks are listed in our wiki at


The Summer of Code is documented on Google's website at


About Debian

The Debian Project is an association of Free Software developers who
volunteer their time and effort in order to produce the completely free
operating systems Debian GNU/Linux.

Contact Information

For further information, please visit the Debian web pages at
<http://www.debian.org/> or send mail to <press@debian.org>.

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