Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Google Summer of Code

Google has announced its third Google Summer of Code. This is an annual event where students develop on Open Source projects. This is definetly one of those activities that does a lot of good. It is one way whereby Google makes its mantra of "do no evil" work well.

For Open Progress, we have entered for a first time; we have a nice mix of MediaWiki and OmegaWiki based projects. All these projects are dear to us. We have shown Brion our list, and we are likely to work together on these.

What struck me is that when you apply for the GSOC, it is compulsory to have a mailing list. This is the traditional way of doing things. I am subscribed to many mailing lists. I think mailing lists suck big-time. There is so much repetition, the signal to noise ration is typically quite bad. I do not understand why people do not use a wiki to document and discuss.

I think this is one of those instances where software development proves to be conservative. When you follow the subjects you are interested in on a wiki, you can use watch lists to make a selection, you can use RSS to follow the changes on a low bandwidth wiki.

Because you refactor what is there, there is no need to repeat so much. When you have discussions that are getting out of hand, backrooms can be opened for those quarrelling. Maybe I am an idealist that I see it in this way .. oh well ..

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