Why is your organization applying to participate in Google Summer of Code 2012? What do you hope to gain by participating?
The Clojure community has been growing at a healthy rate since the initial language announcement in 2007: the Clojure mailing has over 6000 subscribers, freenode IRC channel regularly sees greater than 400 participants, and there three conferences this year dedicated to Clojure. All of this activity means many open source initiatives in the community that need help - these range from new platform like ClojureCLR and ClojureScript to advanced creative authoring environment like Overtone. This coupled with evident interest from students on the mailing list have encouraged us to apply.
Does your organization have an application template you would like to see students use? If so, please provide it now
What criteria did you use to select your mentors for this year's program? Please be as specific as possible.
Mentors are generally leaders of existing Clojure community projects that have been involved in the development of the programming language more than three years. These community leaders have shown a dedication and level of involvement that is simple to verify.
What is your plan for dealing with disappearing students?
The most critical aspect is of course preventing such a scenario entirely. This needs to happen at the level of the selection of the proposal, the selection of the mentor, and the selection of student. A proposal of proper scope, a dedicated mentor, and a student with a visible history of seeing projects to their end is critical to success. Also critical is observing their involvement in the community up to the student selection process. Finally a proper interview is probably required in order to find out whether the mentor/student pairing is ideal and whether the student will be free of time conflicts during the GSoC time period to see their project to completion.
What is your plan for dealing with disappearing mentors?
Most projects will have a backup mentor. Even so, the mentors are selected from the community precisely for their history of involvement in the proposal.
What steps will you take to encourage students to interact with your project's community before, during and after the program?
It will be made clear that community involvement prior to selection will be strong factor for being considered for a proposal. We believe that open source contribution is not a summer time affair. Students should be talking with mentors from the start in order to amass the adequate material required to tackle the proposal. This may include showing familiarity with an API, submitting patches, and reading papers.