A few weeks ago, Google sponsored a trip for me and Jimmy Berry (18) to Drupal's Code Sprint in Paris. It is safe to say that without Google's sponsorship, I would not have been going. This opportunity was incredible, both for myself, Jimmy, and the Drupal community as a whole. Drupal is a Content Management Platform which has recently decided to make the switch to test driven development. Once all of us were there in Paris, we did our best to make this dream a reality. The results were superb— Drupal now has an automated testing system in its core, and we have functional tests written for nearly all of the Drupal core. This is truly an amazing achievement that Drupal has been striving for for nearly three years, but this sprint has made it into a reality. It is truly awesome to be involved in such a vibrant open source community with so much support. I'm only fifteen years old, but my involvement in open source has led me to go places and do things I would never have dreamed I could do. If someone had told me a year and a half ago, before I started working on open source, that in less than two years I would be sponsored by Google to go to Paris to help improve an automated testing framework in order to get it into the core a content management system called Drupal, I wouldn't have thought it possible.
Since the end of GHOP I have become increasingly involved in the Drupal project. After much encouragement and generous donations I was able to attend Drupalcon Boston 2008. At the conference I spoke in two sessions, one about GHOP and the other regarding automated testing of Drupal, an area where I'd become particuarly involved. My contributions from GHOP had placed me at the forefront of the push to improve automated testing of Drupal, and it was quite rewarding to see Dries deliver his State of Drupal keynote in which he detailed plans to have 100% test coverage of Drupal 7, especially since his talk occurred right after our testing session.The newly increased priority and accelerated timeline meant that much work would need to be done in the next several months. Upon returning home I got started and was soon given the opportunity to become the maintainer of the SimpleTest module, the focus of automated testing development. I was excited by the opportunity to play an influential role in the development of Drupal 7 and accepted heartily. Given the authority to make code changes and incorporate contributed patches, I accelerated the rate of development. SimpleTest soon saw an enormous amount of change and inched ever closer to inclusion in Drupal core.The proposed Paris testing sprint started to become a reality and I began raising funds and further preparing SimpleTest for the sprint. Work continued furiously over the next several weeks. Thanks to generous donations from individuals and Google I received the necessary funding to attend and the sprint took place in Paris, France from April 19th to 21st. We worked for two days before resolving the outstanding issues that blocked SimpleTest's entrance into the core, but our efforts paid off once SimpleTest was committed. It was a great experience to work with a group of dedicated developers to accomplish goals.I plan to continue my contributions to Drupal through the Google Summer of Code. My Usability Testing Suite was accepted as a project for the 2008 summer. I am looking forward to working on the project and seeing it put to good use. None of this would have happened without the GHOP initiative and all those involved, so my thanks to all of you.
Finnish Summer Code Focuses on User ExperienceThe 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.
Last Saturday was the last day of a three day conference in Brazil called International Free Software Forum (or fisl, as it is called by its closer friends). Google participated as a sponsor, and I participated by helping to organize Google's participation and, personally, helping the Program Committee, which I am member of.I believe numbers say a lot about such an event, so let's check them: more than 7400 people, more than 400 speakers, 21 countries, 258 sessions. The conference center was always full, the sessions as well. During my Google Summer of Code&trade talk (the only session I managed to attend), more than a half of the audience were new to the conference, which is great news. The community is receiving new blood, which is something really important to us, and something we have been working for a while to get. The time when a Free Software/Open Source conference was full of old friends is gone. We are upstream, everywhere, with everybody!The conference had no delays for the sessions, there were problems to follow the conference over the internet in the first day, but the problem got solved, and we had more than 20 thousand unique IPs connecting to the "Free Software TV" (TV Software Livre) to follow fisl. It was great to meet so many Summer of Coders and I shared the microphone with them during my talk. The room was full and I got lots of questions. People gave me good feedback about it later on (even though we had so many problems to get the projector to....project!).Besides the 257 sessions of the main schedule, there was a Programming Arena, a competition that challenges the participants to solve bugs in existing Free/Open Source Software projects, and also develop new software that will be useful for the community. The final challenge was to build an ODF reader for Maemo, software used in mobile platforms. The code will be published soon, and the hackers got geek gadgets (mobile phones and Internet Tablets) from the Nokia Institute of Technology as prize."May the source be with you....and you...and you...". This was the message you could see everywhere, which means people loved our swag! Google distributed many t-shirts to the people participating at the conference, as well as very nice mugs, and an impossible-to-count number of stickers.For the next year, there is already plan for a Kernel Development and Smalltalk miniconfs. The idea is now to get all this energy and motivation focused on development.One of the things that makes me like this conference so much is the fact that it is fully organized by volunteers, me being one of them. A team that decreases in number every year, but a team who really keeps up with the work of making the largest and best Free Software conference I've ever been to. The conference is already over, but all I can think about is "what are we going to do next year?". I still can feel the energy. fisl 10, for 10 thousand. That's how it will be :)
Flourish 2008: Open Source Helping Students to FlourishIf you've ever flown cross-country or around the planet to attend a conference, I'm sure you'll agree that nothing beats going to a conference in your own backyard. So I'm sure you can understand how delighted I was when my colleague, Ben Collins-Sussman and I were invited to give a keynote at the Flourish 2008 conference last week in our fair city, Chicago. It was a great conference, and the most amazing part is that it is an entirely student-run conference. Thanks for having us, Flourish.I also attended ApacheCon Amsterdam where I gave a talk as part of the business and community track, in addition to co-moderating the ApacheCon Lightning Talks, which I started several years ago.
Google recently invited us to join the fun at AsiaBSDCon 2008. We met many famous developers from the FreeBSD community and had a great experience talking with other developers in person. We also got to meet cool people from Google and now have a deeper understanding of Google's business culture.As a Summer of Coder the strongest feeling you have is that things are open. You can say what you want and you can work on whatever is interesting to you. The program gives you chances to improve yourself and exercise your skills. This feeling continued throughout Summer of Code and carried over to the conference.While attending AsiaBSDCon, we felt very honored to be members of the Open Source community. Everyone attending had high enthusiasm, which spread to both of us. We felt our insights into software development were widely broadened by the conversations we had. We got a chance to attend the FreeBSD Developer's Summit, where everyone brainstormed new ideas. We also attended NetBSD's discussions and found out about the many interesting things developed based on NetBSD. We also met some guys who were really interested in Summer of Code projects, and we hope to be in contact in the future to collaborate.Thanks to Google for giving us this opportunity.
David TurnerDavid took on a variety of tasks. He warmed up by working on some of GNOME's “choose the bugs yourself” tasks (fixing twelve mnemonic bugs and testing five patches from GNOME’s bugzilla) just to dive into the code bases of empathy (providing support for removing groups) and gThumb (preparing to remove the libexif library ). He also vastly improved the scrolling support in Evince. In addition to this, David updated the JHBuild moduleset schemas and the (now new and shiny) manual itself.David already had open source development experience, as the developer of tuxcast, a command-line Linux podcatcher.Natan YellinNatan wrote an article on GConf for the GNOME Journal (not yet released). He provided Drag-and-drop support for the Online Desktop file widget and a mail widget for the Online Desktop sidebar, fixed a Deskbar-Applet bug and also modified gThumb’s metadata handling and enhancing gThumb’s script definitions. Natan is full of ideas and provided own proposals for potential tasks. He is especially interested in AWN (a dock-like bar) and currently thinks about creating a universal applets framework for GNOME.Philipp KerlingPhilipp added an LCOV code coverage suite to Pango and GTK+ to measure code coverage. He also contributed code to the GNOME online desktop module by providing an embedded workspace switcher widget and popouts for the Online Desktop file widget. He removed old icons from the gnome-desktop module that are now shipped in gnome-icon-theme and fixed four bugs in gnome-build. Philipp has also contributed to GNOME’s German translation team.
The Joomla! community was richly rewarded by the Google Highly Open Participation Contest. 75 students completed 118 tasks, resulting in 31 extensions, 29 documents, 17 brochures and non-profit Web sites, 16 unit tests, 13 installation guide translations, 9 training videos and 3 usability tests, all available for the Joomla! community.It was difficult choosing a winner from our ten outstanding finalists, but surprisingly more difficult narrowing our finalists to a list of runner ups. Ultimately, our selection was based on continued contributions following the GHOP contest. We're proud to acknowledge our GHOP runner ups here and sincerely thank each for their dedication to Joomla!. Chad WindnagleChad Windnagle (drmmr768) is a long time community member and extremely knowledgeable with Joomla!. Now, he is a contributor on the Joomla! Documentation Team. He is friendly, conscientious and assisted many GHOP contestants during the contest. Chad completed these tasks: how to use contact functions for a services directory; how to use Joomla!'s "Register to Read More" functionality; how to add in the TinyMCE Spell Checker capability; how to modify the default template; and how to troubleshoot template installations. Justo de Rivera Justo de Rivera (justo.derivera) is a contributor with the Joomla! Bug Squad and will also participate in the Joomla! Day Spain. He is a promising developer who completed two complex extensions, both of which are popular with the community. For GHOP, Justo developed a Blog Sidebar Calendar and the xml-rpc MetaWeblog API that enables community members to blog using external blogging editors like Flock and Flickr. Marieke van der TuinMarieke van der Tuin (Marieke92) has been active in the Dutch Joomla! community, is now a key contributor on the Joomla! Documentation Team, leader and organizer, and helpful in countless ways. For GHOP, Marieke translated the Dutch Installation Guide and a Team Blog; created four unit testing documents including tests for the Article Manager, Template Manager, Frontpage Manager, and Media Manager; created a Guide to Extension parameter types; and, developed a Joomla! v 1.5 Module for Digg List Stories. Max Shinn Max Shinn (trombonechamp) is extremely creative and a natural community builder. It is very likely Max helped on every single writing task assigned for GHOP. His friendly and helpful approaches strengthened the community and made it fun to participate. Currently, Max is a contributor on the Joomla! Documentation Team and completed these GHOP tasks: created and performed a song in celebration of Joomla!; designed the What is Joomla!? tri-fold; wrote the Guide for the Joomla! Publisher; and, developed art that captures the spirit of "All Together, As a Whole."Michael Casha Michael Casha (MiCCAS) is another long time community member extremely knowledgeable with Joomla!. He is a very encouraging, positive and fun person to be around. He is a contributor with the Joomla! Bug Squad and one who participates in the project in whatever way he can. Michael had great success in GHOP by: creating a Google Gadgets module; recording a video accompaniment to the GHOP Joomla! Quickstart Guide; and, building a Joomla! v 1.5 website for a not for profit organization.Shantanu Bala Shantanu Bala (shantanubala) is another contributor with the Joomla! Bug Squad with a speciality in CSS (an area most developers prefer not to approach.) For GHOP, Shantanu created an innovative template for children including a simplified language file, editor, administrative environment, navigation system, all of which he continues to improve. We'd like to thank Google for involving the Joomla! community and connecting us with 75 amazing students in what we hope is only the first year of this amazing contest. Congratulations to each of Joomla!'s winners and special thanks to each of you who participated. We hope yours was a positive experience and we look forward to hearing from each of you, again, in the future.