Staying Engaged with Your Community
A glorious summer has ended. GSoC is now over—but only officially. Your obligation to the program has been met, but your opportunities still abound. Make the "summer" last by staying involved in your community. Yes, it's now your community. Make the most of it. We have a couple of suggestions that can help you make your experience last beyond the summer.
Maintaining Your Project
You worked on a wonderful project during the summer. You can't abandon it just because the summer ended! After all it's your baby. One way to make sure that your project keeps on growing is by maintaining it well, adding new features to it. There might be a few loose ends that you weren't able to tie up during the coding period. If there's anything in (or not in) your code that's keeping you awake at night, you can always work on that after the coding period ends.
"Please do the communities a favour by not abandoning your projects after the GSoC results are announced, or the boogeyman will get you.[!!!] "
Lalith Suresh P., Network Simulator 3, GSoC Studnet 2010
Do you have other amazing ideas for projects? Why wait until next GSoC to get started on them. You should start working on them right away. You know the folks in your community well now, and you know where to shout for help. Just get started on your wonderful new project idea; you can even get it accepted as a GSoC project next year!
Retreats and Hackfests
A lot of organizations host opportunities to meet face-to-face throughout the year. Attend if there's one happening close by. They're great fun! In fact, you can help organize such activities or even start a local chapter of your community in your area if you have enough people around.
Spread the word
You had a great time this summer. It's your turn now to tell your friends about it. GSoC is also about growing the open source community. Share your GSoC success story with others and inspire them too!
Present your work
You can present your project at some of the open source conferences. The open source community is very much interested in finding out about the cool things that people have been working on. Conferences are a great way of doing that. If possible, you should attend a conference and use the opportunity of presenting your project to other people. It gets you great feedback on your project and helps you find out about other cool things happening in the open source world.
There are so many ways that you can help your organization and the open source community for the next Google Summer of Code. You can submit project ideas, apply again as a student or even become a mentor for a project. You can even contribute by just idling in the IRC channels, helping out the new students who come looking for advice.
Everyone likes to hear back from friends and people they've worked with. Be sure to stay in touch with your mentors, other students and the many great friends that you've made during GSoC.
"GSoC may be over, but I'm really hoping my contribution to the Congress application will go beyond that. I'll be sure to stay in touch with Eric and the Sunlight Foundation. "
Evelina Vrabie, SunLight Foundation, GSoC Student 2010