Thursday, 29 November 2007 02:56

Google competition targets teens

A Google-sponsored competition aims to encourage the involvement of secondary students in open source projects.

The Google Highly Open Participation Contest is not just about programming - the tasks set for contestants include coding, documentation, outreach, quality assurance, research, training, translating, and user interface work. The idea is to include as many people as possible.

All contestants merely need to complete one or more tasks in order to win a prize. Completing one first task earns a T shirt (and where would any software project be without a T shirt?), and then every three completed tasks earns $US100 in the form of American Express Gift Cheques. The maximum payout to any contestant will be $US500.

Ten open source projects - Apache, Drupal, Gnome, Joomla, MoinMoin, Mono, Moodle, Plone, Python and SilverStripe - are participating in the contest. Each will choose a best entry according to Google-determined criteria, and those entrants will receive a trip for two to the Googleplex in Mountain View, California, including flights, accommodation and a meal allowance.

The contest is now open. Tasks may be claimed until January 22 and must be completed by February 3, 2008.

Entrants must be aged at least 13, and be currently enrolled in a secondary school, high school, or pre-university program.

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.





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