Firstly, you need to know what project you are looking for. For example, what’s Discourse? Discourse is an evolving project with a client Ember.js app and a Rails backend. It focuses on people and community building. Discourse team is also professional and helpful. You can find them on Discourse Meta. Meta is the place where the team discusses how and what to develop Discourse. It’s transparent to all contributors.
They are also casual for your involvement. Remote work is how the team works. It’s a lot of freedom so does GSoC.
If you are interested, what’s next?
Secondly, how to prepare if you are interested in a project? There are two steps in this task. Read Google Summer of Code’s manual. Moreover, read how the Discourse team wants you to do. However, 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 interested? GSoC aims 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 dull. My motivation would be that I hope Discourse becomes the largest platform for online discussion because I believe in the same value from the team. It will be useful if I need an online discussion forum.
Discourse team will be in favor of students that who have contributed to it. Also, it’s a straightforward process. Just start. Read contributing guidelines.
Take the smallest bite
It’s natural that feels overwhelming when it comes to a massive project. I stills feel the difficulty when I read the code. However, you should be able to find what is most interested. Find that smallest interests part. Analyze it. Write a plan. Also, 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 understand you.
When it comes to proposal
Lastly, you need to apply. When you need to write a 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. Alternatively, better, they help you with your ideas.
Also, 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. Happy hacking!