Eighteen open source organisations have been selected for this year's Google Code-In contest for pre-university students. The contest starts on November 21st so it's time for students to select the tasks they want to work on.
Like the Google Summer of Code, Google Code-In gives young people an opportunity to participate in open source projects, to the benefit of the organizations as well as the 13-17 year olds who take part.
The organizations selected this year include GNOME, FreeBSD, Parrot Virtual, the Perl Foundation and VideoLAN.
Each of these organisations has to specify tasks, graded as easy, medium and difficult (worth 1, 2 and 4 points for successful completion) , that will take 2-5 days to complete, in between normal school work, in eight categories:
- Code: Tasks related to writing or refactoring code
- Documentation: Tasks related to creating/editing documents
- Outreach: Tasks related to community management and outreach/marketing
- Quality Assurance: Tasks related to testing and ensuring code is of high quality
- Research: Tasks related to studying a problem and recommending solutions
- Training: Tasks related to helping others learn more
- Translation: Tasks related to localization
- User Interface: Tasks related to user experience research or user interface design and interaction
In its guidelines for proposing tasks, GNOME, an established participant in Google's student initiatives, cautions:
The goal of GCI is to get students interested and involved in open source, not to get free child labour. The tasks should reflect that.
There will be two rounds of tasks and many of those for the first round are now listed.
Apart from an introduction to the open source community how do students benefit?
Well for anyone wanting to apply for a university place or to embark on a career in the software industry its a great addition to a resume, and there are prizes: a tee-shirt for every participant who complete a task successfully and $100 for every three completed tasks (up to a limit of $500 per participant.
The 10 students who aggregate the highest points scores will be the Grand Prize Winners and receive a paid trip to Google’s Headquarters in Mountain View, California, USA. More information can be found in the Official Rules, which also explains eligibility.
The contest starts on November 21, 2011 and runs until January 16, 2012 so students who want to participate should sign up and be ready to claim the tasks of their choice.
Google Code-In 2011 website
List of Organizations - links to tasks
Google Code-In 2011
Google contest to get kids involved in Open Source
Google's Summer of Code 2011
To be informed about new articles on I Programmer, subscribe to the RSS feed, follow us on Google+, Twitter or Facebook or sign up for our weekly newsletter.