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Guidance from http://en.flossmanuals.net/melange/org-application-period/ ...


Why is your organization applying to participate in Google Summer of Code 2015? What do you hope to gain by participating?

Over the last year we have recently expanded the scope of the CentOS Project to be much more friendly to open contributions, and to be more interesting to contributors because they are able to join SIGs and work on variants on top of CentOS. Previously there wasn’t that much to contribute to, and now we’re growing the contributor base rapidly with open governance and a new community infrastructure of participation. We are hoping for several things. First, we want to get students excited about CentOS Linux and variants - it’s a de facto open source development platform, so quite useful to students looking to learn and grow their own projects. Second, we have many interesting projects via the variant SIGs such as the Cloud SIG, Storage SIG, and Virt SIG, so there is a lot of ability to work on new and meaningful technologies. Third, we want to grow the project’s ability to bring new contributors on-board, which has historically not been a part of the project’s scope as much. This is one reason for choosing veteran GSoC administrators, who can help get the project through the awkward first-timer stage.

How many potential mentors do you have for this year's program? What criteria did you use to select them?*

Between twelve to eighteen to work with students directly and another handful to help with proposals and mentoring-the-mentors, depending on how project ideas work out. We looked immediately to the existing central contributors who have been building and testing CentOS Linux for many years. These are proven people with lots of experience in the project. Next we looked to the variant SIGs, so the upstream folks from oVirt, OpenStack, Gluster, Xen Project, and so forth. These are people with specific problems to solve and usually good experience in their upstream in bringing in new contributors, including students and interns.

What is your plan for dealing with disappearing students?*

We’re going to use the getting to know each other period to establish a good relationship, and make sure mentors have that discussion with students - how do I reach you if you seem to have disappeared, etc., then pass that information along to the other mentors and admins. We’d like to give latitude to students within the bounds of the schedule - it’s best to seek out what is going on and why, and see if there is something that can be done or adjusted to make it possible for the student to complete. Often it’s just a small hiccup that the student then thinks, “Oh, no, I messed up, I can’t go back.” They need to hear from us that mistakes are expected (and encouraged!), and that we won’t give up on them because of that. If we are unable to reach a student before a schedule deadline, we may have to choose to drop that student. Ultimately, we’ll rely upon the mentor’s discretion about the right approach. Sometimes it’s as simple as refactoring and planning the project better to enable the student to come back and finish on time.

What is your plan for dealing with disappearing mentors?*

Many of our mentors are core CentOS developers who work together daily, so it’s hard for them to disappear. :) The mentors from the SIGs are usually directly from the upstream project, and are usually hard to lose. Regardless, for each project we are going to ask for backup mentors, and also prefer to have an associated team or upstream that is part of the interaction so they can step in if a mentor is unavailable. We’ll have back-end contact information for the mentor, so we can make a phone call or whatever is appropriate to reach that person. If someone disappears for too long, such as a week or so -- whatever is enough to disrupt the student’s flow -- we’ll have the backup mentor step in. The administrators will keep track of all projects via the blog planet, IRC, and mailing lists, and can step in as a third and final option if needed.

What steps will you take to encourage students to interact with your project's community before and during the program?*

This is an exciting time for the CentOS Project, as we've been taking what has historically been a small internal group of developers, and opening it up to include a wider community. Because of this timing, community interaction and growth is an important consideration for many initiatives we have underway currently, and GSoC is an important one for us. Students are encouraged to join our main IRC channel, where we have many active developer discussions. In addition, we will actively reach out to our broader developer/user community to help raise interest in the GSoC projects -- by doing so, we hope to increase communication between GSoC students and the community instead of having them interact solely with their mentors or a small group of core developers.

What will you do to encourage your accepted students to stick with the project after Google Summer of Code concludes?*

Community bonding is the first key, and making sure they feel successful and part of the project. Helping to promote the individual projects throughout to the summer and beyond will help get them kudos in the way that appeals to technical folks. We have the capability to get them some branded gear such as a t-shirt or backpack, something they can use to show their project pride. Ultimately we recognize that some students may move on, our goal then is to ensure they continue to work in open source software in some way, having built up their skills and reputation working within the CentOS Project.

Are you a new organization who has a Googler or other organization to vouch for you? If so, please list their name(s) here.

This is our third time applying as an organization, having applied in 2009 and 2014 but not being accepted. Our administrators, Karsten Wade and Jeff Sheltren, have both had previous experience as GSoC mentors and admins for other organizations in the past -- Fedora and OSUOSL. In addition, the Fedora Project will vouch for us.

Are you an established or larger organization who would like to vouch for a new organization applying this year? If so, please list your name(s) here.

Not yet. :)

If you are a new organization, have you applied in the past? If so, for what year(s)?

Yes, we applied in 2009 but were not accepted. The current admins are not familiar with the details. We also applied in 2014 but were not accepted. The current admins have worked to fix our shortfalls.

Is there anything else we should know or you'd like to tell us that doesn't fit anywhere else on the application?

We really appreciate the opportunity to step forward this year, and to solve the things that have kept us out of the GSoC program in the past. We’re super-excited about being able to focus more on contributors to the project, there’s long been a complaint about CentOS being hard to contribute to. Now that we have significant and interesting things going on outside of the essential “rebuild Linux” mission, we’re really looking forward to the boost that GSoC will give us as an organization in building our skills at bringing in and mentoring new contributors and especially the special-sort of contributors that students are.


2023-09-11 07:22