Seasons for Users

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

We're always delighted when we can share news about students working to improve Free and Open Source Software. You may recall that we recently let you know about the results of Finnish Summer Code 2007. While we were busy selecting participants for Google Summer of Code™ 2008, Finnish Summer Code was just kicking off for this year.

Sanna Heiskanen, the Project Manager for Finnish Summer Code, was kind enough to send us these details:

Finnish Summer Code Focuses on User Experience

The Finnish Summer Code project has chosen five coders for 2008. Our jury was very happy with the level of applications in the finals, and thinks that this years’ projects will improve the user experience of Linux. It is also clear that the results of this years’ Summer Code will benefit the community at large.

Our students have all summarized their projects for us.

Sakari Bergen: Ardour

”Improving Ardour's export functionality and adding meta data support to it will make working on music collaboratively and sharing it with Ardour a lot easier. It will also encourage people to tag and name their files in a smart way. Especially by including licensing information in the meta data, people will be encouraged to reuse sounds for sampling or creating mashups, or simply to release their work under a free license for the enjoyment of others.”

Olli Savolainen: Moodle Quiz

”Moodle Quiz is for creating, taking and evaluating quizes and exams. It is used by hundreds of thousands of people in enterprises, schools and universities worldwide. The new user interface I am developing will help teachers to create exams with the understanding they already have from traditional exams, freeing their creative energy for what they do best.”

Niklas Laxström
: I18n with MediaWiki

”My project is about improving a collaborative translation platform that uses MediaWiki as its base product. Translators for open source projects and content are a scarce resource, and we do not want to waste their time nor require them to be computer experts. It is important to add support for other open source projects and content and let translators concentrate on translating together and spend less time doing other work they do not need to. Wiki element in the platform helps a lot in building translation communities.”

Antti Kaijanmäki: Mobile Broadband Configuration Assistant for NetworkManager

”My project is focusing on making utilization of mobile broadband easier. At present state connecting to Internet through a mobile phone or dedicated mobile broadband modem is a hassle. The project creates an assistant for setting up mobile broadband connections. Connection management will also be improved. Ease of use and out of the box functionality are the ground rules for the project.”

Juuso Alasuutari: Improving the LASH Audio Session Handler

”Music is an important part of life, and expressing oneself through music is fundamental for many people. But althought musicality is considered free in most societies, software for creating music seldom is. With my project I want to help bring Free music software one step closer to musicians and recording studios. ”

Summer Code of Finland is organised by COSS (The Finnish Centre for Open Source Solutions) and aims to help Finnish students participate in open source development. Google is one of the sponsors funding the students' projects.

In other great news, the good folks with the Season of Usability project recently closed their call for student projects. We're looking forward to hearing the results in a few weeks.