I submitted our application to be a participating organization in the Google Code-in.
We need to compile the task list. I put in some high-level placeholders for now, but people should go ahead and add suggestions for tasks. Note that the final task list will be pruned down to those tasks that are approved by the core Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. leads and that have appropriate people available to oversee them, to ensure a positive outcome for the students and that we’re not wasting anyone’s time. If you want to suggest a task, leave it in a comment here. Specify if you are also offering to mentor any student taking on that task, or if it’s just something you think should get done. As tasks are agreed upon and have mentors assigned to them, I’ll add them to the codex page.
We’ll probably apply to be a participating organization for the Google Code-in coming up next month. It’s a student program a la GSoC, but for pre-university students age 13-18. Instead of one long one-on-one project, Code-in is a “contest” rather a dedicated mentorship. The way it works is that the organizations (like us) make a list of tasks that students could work on during the 6-week contest period, falling into a variety of 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 The process (or result) of changing text, words, and display formatting to support another language. Also see localization, internationalization.: Tasks related to localization
User Interface: Tasks related to user experience research or user interface design and interaction
Unlike GSoC, where students proposed projects based on our suggestions, for Code-in students do not suggest projects, but work from our pre-defined task list. Students sign up to work on one task at a time (we can accept for reject the assignment). They can complete up to 15 tasks, and will be awarded $100 for every three completed tasks. Since prizes are based on # of tasks, we will need to make sure that the task list we come up with is even — that is, we need to break things down so that each task should take about the same amount of time/effort.
Students can ask questions (though they are expected to look for answers themselves first), and can collaborate with community members on their tasks as appropriate. This format makes mentorship a much easier thing to commit to than with GSoC, as the amount of time you mentor is flexible and on an as-needed basis.
If we are chosen to participate, then we’ll likely use the #wordpress-gsoc channel for the code-in students to seek help/guidance, and could set up a group blog (versus network, site) as well if it seems like it would be useful.
In the comments, feel free to make some preliminary suggestions for tasks that middle/high school students between the ages of 13 and 18 would be able to do. The application for organization participation is in a week or so, and the students get involved later in November.