I'm happy to announce that the Python Software Foundation is part of a new Google Open Source program, the Highly Open Participation Contest. This contest is an effort by Google to engage pre-college students in open source programming: Google is offering prizes and awards for completing a variety of tasks for several organizations.
You can read the official announcement of the PSF's involvement over on the Python Software Foundation blog (in a bit), or read about the overall Google Highly Open Participation Contest at the official announcement. Python's GHOP project page is here.
Ten organizations were invited to take part in this pilot: they are Plone, SilverStripe, Moodle, the Apache Software Foundation, Python, Joomla!, Mono, GNOME, Drupal, and MoinMoin. (Note that Plone and MoinMoin are both written in Python, so I think Python has a very good representation!)
On a more sober note, it is clear to me that this is Google's latest foray in their continuing efforts to gain control of the world and Do Evil. What could be more diabolical than paying young students to work on other people's projects?? Google's perfidy knows no bounds.
Seriously, I'm very enthusiastic about this contest. I have no idea how it's going to turn out, but I think the Python GHOP team put together a great list of tasks and I'm looking forward to the results.
How can I help?
YOU can help in two ways: suggest more tasks, and help mentor participants. Instructions for doing both are available on the project Wiki under NewTaskGuidelines and MentorPage. (If you know eligible programmers, you might also point them at the Google Code project -- there are some cherries ripe to be picked ;).
Who is to blame?
About two dozen people came up with the initial task ideas, including some who had no idea to what they were contributing ;). This includes Brett Cannon, Collin Winter, Michal Kwiatkowski, Georg Brandl, Grig Gheorghiu, Greg Wilson, Terry Peppers, Shannon Behrens, Michael Carter, Phil Hassey, and Michael Mol. The blog comments on my blog for the two posts Projects for people new to Python? and Hidden Gems in stdlib were very helpful as well!
A group of five people actually wrote up most of the tasks and checked them over for obvious inanities: Will Guaraldi, Andre Roberge, Doug Hellmann, Georg Brandl, and me. This same group is largely responsible for the Google Code project pages.
Andre Roberge, Doug Helmann, Georg Brandl, Grig Gheorghiu, Steve Holden and I are the current "project mentors". Won't you join us?
Leslie Hawthorn at Google did an amazing job of coordinating everyone. She deserves a great big heap o' thanks from the entire Python community!
Posted by Abhik on 2007-11-28 at 12:20.
The task list contains many tasks for adding documentation and/or unit tests to pre-existing code. While helpful to the Python community, these seem like pretty boring exercises for high school students. I can't think of better tasks right now so I won't belabor the point.. but the coding tasks for creating APIs for reddit and myspace do seem fun!