[development] Encouraging young contributors: We need your help!

Angela Byron drupal-devel at webchick.net
Thu Nov 29 09:53:57 UTC 2007

I don't know how many of you read the front page of drupal.org so I'll 
try and summarize the contents of http://drupal.org/node/195913.

* Google has announced a contest for 13-18 year olds to help them get 
involved in open source.
* How the contest works is the various open source projects (one of 
which was Drupal) write up a series of tasks, each of which would take 
between 2-5 days to complete.
* Tasks can be anything from coding to documentation to research to...
* Students "claim" a task and win prizes for completing one or more 
tasks (a t-shirt, $100-$500, up to a grand prize of a trip to Google HQ)
* Each project can have a total of 102 tasks. (That number may go up 
though, depending on how successful the program is.)

At the program launch, Drupal had about 45 tasks. *Over half* of these 
were claimed *on the first day of the contest.* While this is fantastic, 
both for the prospect of the contest and for the Drupal project, it does 
come with one rather large problem:

We DESPERATELY need your help so we can keep up with these students!! :)

We basically need an army of people to head over to 
http://groups.drupal.org/node/7362 and start creating potential tasks 
that we could use in this program using the guidelines/template from 

Please note that writing a task means more than "Well what about 
something with such and such module?" and means actually thinking it 
through and putting it into words what exactly you're looking for, and 
scoping it so it can be done by a student in a short time frame. That 
said, it's a great opportunity to get some of these "really important 
but too many other fires" problems taken care of, or scratching personal 
itches (as long as you can justify its importance to the project as a 
whole), or something that would greatly improve drupal.org, or what have 

Tasks that have been popular thusfar:
- Theming related stuff (make bluemarine color module-enabled, create a 
D6 theme..)
- Create a recipe for $foo (podcasting, school news site, single-user 
blog, personal site...)
- Create a video for $foo (translating Drupal, TortoiseCVS...)
- Fix $foo documentation (upgrading docs, snippets, D6 help docs..)
- Coding tasks (port $foo module to 6.x, create install profile...)
- Translate $foo into $bar language (patch videos.. anything else that 
makes sense to translate??)
- Marketing tasks (interview Dries, create promotional 

Then again, it's only been a day, so kind of hard to predict trends. ;)

I *really* appreciate anyone's help on this. And if you're IRC-capable, 
please idle in #drupal-ghop and help answer students' questions.


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