(Please note that the figures used in this article are from 18:00 UTC on Saturday 3rd December and they are pulled from a download of data of data from the Melange interface, the absolute accuracy is dependent on the people providing data (very good IME) but will, therefore, not reflect the exact situation at the time of your perusal).

The Story Thus Far…

The Google Code-in is an initiative aimed at 13-17 year old school/college students with the idea of getting them involved with open source. The majority of this can be found in the first article of this series: Google Code-in: Fit the First.

Understanding the Figures(1)

It is now approximately three weeks into the project (2 weeks on Monday since the students upped-pens however) and I thought I would give you a quick update of how we are doing so far before I issue my demands pleas for help and crave your indulgence and participation. It would have been nice to run a comparison between this year’s efforts and last years. But the TPF didn’t involve itself as strongly as a mentor organisation last year, we instead participated with the Parrot Foundation and therefore the majority of the Perl related tasks were under the Rakudo project or related to parrot. The project managers at the time were running a new initiative and didn’t have the time in that fledgling environment to gather accurate statistics and these are not available to us through the interface (that I am able to discover).

  • So our current number of tasks stands at an impressive 376 potential tasks for students;
  • There have been 69 tasks closed/completed which is 18% of the total;
  • 12 days Have passed and there are 44 days remaining in the initiative, 78% of the time remains;
  • We have 44 mentors listed in the organisation database;
  • We have 77 students who have taken or completed tasks;
  • There are 261 tasks left in the current group, these are those that are unopened or unclaimed which is 69% of the total;
  • There are 46 claimed tasks or in progress which is 13% of the total;
  • Therefore we have completed/near completed 31% of our tasks (w00t).(3)

Moar Tasks Please

The current group of tasks looks daunting but we still need more, this will give our students a greater choice and help us recruit more students to the initiative. We would particularly love to have tasks from Perl6 which was a tad under-represented in the initial round. We also would love some tasks from the popular modules, frameworks and APIs. Visit the EPO wiki to learn more about the type of tasks and to submit new tasks for the December 16th Deadline.

Moar People Please

Student Bodies

On that note we would dearly love to have more students sign up to the initiative so please do your utmost to spread the word around. If you can put up some flyers, or send them to a local school/colleges technical science/equivalent department there are templates available on the Perl Foundation website:

Full colour – http://www.perlfoundation.org/attachment/press_releases/GCi-2011-basic.pdf

Reduced colour (prints in B&W) – http://www.perlfoundation.org/attachment/press_releases/GCi-2011-basic-home-small-office-printer.pdf

TPF press releases – http://www.perlfoundation.org/press_releases (simply scroll to the bottom of the page)


We would also like to make a plea to you all to consider being a mentor, you can take just one task and help a great deal, the typical task takes a couple of hours to review and work with the student, some tasks take more but there is a community of mentors willing to help you in the irc channel #gci on irc.perl.org.

All mentors current and future should add their name to the mentor list on the wiki so that we have a record of who you are for the future so we can all look back and bask in the glory :).(4)


if you cannot mentor, if you don’t know students, if you live in a cave that is frequented by an elderly and flatulent wolf who never shares his half of the bills, you at least have an internet connection and you can help spread the word through the social and traditional media channels of our World Wide Webular Community, so please do at least that :).(5)

Thanks in advance


(1) Please ignore my very simplistic figure representation, a better statistician, hell a statistician (!), would have done a far nicer, and potentially more accurate(2), job.

(2) So My Statistician joke, while I have you here.

Three statisticians are out shooting ducks.
Statistician One fires, but shoots too high,
Statistician Two fires, but shoots too low,
Statistician Three says, “hey look, I hit it”

(Your groans of pain are appreciated)

(3) If anyone wants to make a pretty chart (not a boring pie chart but something non-Florence and full of 3D snappiness and textual exposition, then feel free and I will add it here :) I could just make an info-chart they seem popular :)

(4) Sounds pompous but for the first time I have mentored two students, they were smart and got the work done with very little help needed from me and we have a great set of completed tasks. So I know how good it feels when you complete something with a student.

(5) Keep your eyes peeled, there will at least be a Fit the Third in this series.