Mentoring Organization Applications is Accepted for Google Summer of Code 2012!

Interested in finding bright, enthusiastic new contributors to your open source project? Apply to be a mentoring organization in the Google Summer of Code program. We are now accepting applications from open source projects interested in acting as mentoring organizations.

Now in its eighth year, Google Summer of Code is a program designed to pair university students from around the world with mentors at open source projects in such varied fields as academic research, language translations, content management systems, games, and operating systems. Since 2005, over 6,000 students from 90 countries have completed the Google Summer of Code program with the support of over 350 mentoring organizations. Students gain exposure to real-world software development while earning a stipend for their work and an opportunity to explore areas related to their academic pursuits, thus “flipping bits, not burgers” during their school break. In return, mentoring organizations have the opportunity to identify and attract new developers to their projects as these students often continue their work with the organizations after Google Summer of Code concludes.

This year we are again encouraging experienced Google Summer of Code mentoring organizations to refer newer, smaller organizations they think could benefit from the program to apply. Last year we had 49 of these small organizations join the program and we hope the referral program will again bring many more new organizations to the Google Summer of Code program.

The deadline for applying to be a mentoring organization for Google Summer of Code is Friday, March 9th at 23:00 UTC (3pm PST). The list of accepted organizations will be posted on the Google Summer of Code site on Friday, March 16th. Students will then have 10 days to reach out to the accepted organizations to discuss their project ideas before we begin accepting student applications on March 26th.

Please visit our Frequently Asked Questions page for more details. For more information you can check out the Mentor Manual and timeline for and join the discussion group. Good luck to all of our mentoring organization applicants!

Google Summer of Code: Write code and save lives with OpenMRS

Earlier this year OpenMRS participated in Google Summer of Code, a worldwide program organized by Google’s Open Source Programs Office to expose university students to the world of free and open source software, and encourage those students to become long-term contributors to projects that interest them. OpenMRS is a web-based medical record system originally designed for use in the developing world, and is now used on every continent on the globe. OpenMRS is used in all kinds of health care environments, from research laboratories to hospitals to small clinics in remote villages, and even via mobile devices that collect data door-to-door.
OpenMRS has been participating in Google Summer of Code every year since 2007, and our 5th year was arguably our most successful yet. This year, 15 motivated students successfully completed projects to focus or extend the OpenMRS health care IT platform in ways that will have significant impact for our global community of users. Throughout the summer our students became full contributors in good standing in the OpenMRS community. They presented their projects’ work in progress to other developers and users and often contributed their code to our software releases to support health care professionals saving lives around the world. Unlike many other summer internships that students may have during the summer, our students were responsible for planning and delivery of “real-life projects” that came from needs and requests from people installing and using OpenMRS.
Some projects were dedicated to improving the core OpenMRS platform, and some built add-on modules to support specific types of clinical activities. There were projects focused on making the installation of OpenMRS easier, and others focused on helping improve collaboration for our volunteer community. And if the presentations our students made this semester were any indication, all of the projects were exciting ways to write code and save lives. There’s not space here to describe each project in detail, but we encourage you to check out our students and their projects on the OpenMRS Wiki and learn more about them:
  • Balachandiran Ajanthan created an add-on module to deploy reusable “SMART” health care apps inside OpenMRS.
  • Christopher Zakian reimagined a “universal” search within OpenMRS that allows users to search for any system data from anywhere within the system
  • Gaurav Paliwal created an add-on module to allow OpenMRS users to provide application feedback to their system administrators and the larger open source community.
  • Gauthami Pingili improved both the UI of the OpenMRS Patient Matching module and improved its accuracy of finding duplicate patients.
  • Goutham Vasireddi helped make it faster and easier for developers to write add-on modules for OpenMRS by creating a “wizard” for Maven.
  • Jelena Skorucak reworked the attributes a person has within OpenMRS, giving clinics the flexibility to record more information about the persons.
  • João Portela made significant improvements to our HTML Form Entry editor, allowing non-programmers to create more detailed, useful data collection forms for health care.
  • Piotr Bryk enhanced our Metadata Sharing module to make it easier to manage the export and import of OpenMRS system configurations.
  • Rahul Akula’s work helped make it possible for OpenMRS to interoperate with external laboratory information systems.
  • Sai Manohar Nethi worked to create a framework for a comprehensive Human Resource add-on module for OpenMRS, allowing the system to help manage clinic personnel.
  • Sreya Janaswamy created a way for OpenMRS users to translate phrases used by the application into other languages, inside the application itself.
  • Sriskandarajah Suhothayan created a way for the OpenMRS Notifiable Condition Detector module to watch for certain large-scale patterns and send notifications to clinicians via SMS or e-mail.
  • Suranga Kasthurirathne created a new way for OpenMRS to store clinical observations that reference other people or locations.
  • Taras Chorny built a system to allow OpenMRS to be installed and upgraded using a variety of languages.
  • Victor Chircu built an “Atlas” add-on module that allows OpenMRS users to opt-in to report their location, type of clinic, and number of patients on a shared map to represent the active OpenMRS community.
Since we started participating in Google Summer of Code, we’re very proud that so many of our students have stayed active in the OpenMRS community and continued to contribute their talents after the program ended. In fact, three of our students have gone on to become full-time OpenMRS developers paid by various organizations involved in our community.
We continue to be more and more impressed with the students who are interested in our work, and are proud to welcome them into the OpenMRS family! In fact, this year, 2011 Google Summer of Code student Suranga Kasthurirathne was able to join us in October for our annual OpenMRS implementers meeting in Kigali, Rwanda. Suranga provided some excellent feedback about his involvement in Google Summer of Code this year, and about his experience meeting the OpenMRS community face to face. Read his blog post for more of his thoughts.
Once again, this year we were blown away by our amazing students during Google Summer of Code.

The KDE’s Summer of Achievements

KDE took part in its 7th year as a mentoring organization for the Google Summer of Code. Thanks to Google’s generous funding and KDE’s mentors we were able to work with 51 students over the summer, once again making KDE the largest organization taking part in Google Summer of Code. Choosing the right students was hard but the selection turned out well. The students coded in nearly all areas of KDE from Calligra and Rekonq to Amarok and KStars. Their projects turned out very well, and we’ve once again been impressed with the talent and dedication of the students. All 51 students passed their mid-term evaluation and 47 successfully passed their final evaluation. Valorie Zimmerman, KDE Administrator for Google Summer of Code, says: “KDE got forty-seven completed projects, which is tremendous. Our focus though is not on the code itself, but on the students and their involvement with KDE. However, their projects enrich KDE immensely, and you’ll be seeing their code integrated into our codebase over the next few months. “
Similar to previous years, KDE received many more great student applications for Google Summer of Code than we were able to accept into the program. To welcome these remaining students to our community and to give them mentoring, support, and a project to work on, we ran Season of KDE again. It is a program similar to Google Summer of Code where students receive a certificate and limited-edition t-shirt for completing their project successfully. The response was overwhelming this year and we had to close applications after 100 submissions. Nearly all of them were matched up with a mentor and project to work on. The students still have a few more weeks to work on their projects but results are looking fantastic so far.
Lydia Pintscher, KDE Administrator for Google Summer of Code and Season of KDE, says: “What makes me proud about this is the fact that KDE as a community is able and willing to teach newcomers to Free Software on a scale like few other projects while delivering high-quality results in terms of code produced and students mentored. What makes me even more proud is the overwhelming success of Season of KDE even without the monetary incentive but just because people want to work on something amazing in an amazing community.”
For more information on each student’s proposal and their blogs about the project can be found on our Status Reports page. We have also posted blogs on our Google Summer of Code Achievements: chapter one, chapter two, and chapter three.