Discourse is a wonderful free and open source software for modern forum. In fact, it has already powered many projects’ forum. Take a look at where it’s built.
Discourse is an evolving project with a client Ember.js app and a Rails backend. It focus on people and community building. Discourse team is also professional and helpful. You can find them on Discourse Meta. Meta is actually the place where the team discuss how and what to develop Discourse. It’s transparent to all contributors.
They are also casual for your involvement. Remote work is how team works. It’s a lot of freedom so does GSoC.
If you are interested, what’s next?
There are two steps in this task. Read Google Summer of Code’s manual. And read how Discourse team wants you to do. But since you are reading my post, I’m going to tell you a few secrets. The first secret is Reading is # Fundamental. So let’s talk about GSoC manual firstly.
- Read FAQ.
- Read guides.
- (Chinese) If you understand Chinese, there are more resources.
- Then you can ask questions.
Before you continue on reading, let’s answer a question. Are you actually interested? GSoC is aim to contribute open source community which means the aim is to make you comfortable and want to stay in the future. Hang on to that motivation otherwise it’s going to be really boring.
Discourse team will be in favor of students that who have contributed to it. And it’s a really simple process. Just start. Read contributing guidelines.
Take the smallest bite
It’s natural that feels overwhelming when it comes to large project. I stills feel the difficulty when I read the code. But you should be able to find what is mostly interested. Find that smallest interests part. Analyze it. Write a plan. And execute your plan. If there’s a lion on the way, you can ask questions and most likely you will get a reply quickly. As long as you know what you are trying to do, people get you.
When it comes to proposal
When you need to write proposal, you feel it’s real now. That’s true. It would be better if you already have your plans and tried some ideas. As previously said, the team is helpful if you know them. Discourse team usually has a lot on their hands. If they know you, they can of course give you some tasks that you might be interested. Or better, they help you with your ideas.
And more importantly, consider your proposal as a guideline/todo list for yourself. So you don’t get lost.
Good luck for the incoming Google Summer of Code.