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Organization id
Organization name
The Perl Foundation
Organization description
The Perl Foundation is dedicated to the advancement of the Perl programming
language through open discussion, collaboration, design, and code. The Perl
Foundation is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization based in Holland, Michigan.
The Perl Foundation coordinates the efforts of numerous grass-roots Perl-based
groups including International Yet Another Perl Conferences (YAPC), and
carries the legal responsibility for Perl 5, Perl 6,, Perl Mongers
and PerlMonks.
Its purposes are:
* cultivating a collaborative open source community and an ecosystem of
computer language implementations collectively known as "Perl" and
complementary tools, libraries, extensions, and applications around Perl
* offering Perl to members of the general public through the use of open
source licensing
* educating members of the general public in the application of Perl
* advancing Perl through scientific research and development
* protecting the intellectual property of Perl
* receiving and administering funds to aid, support and assist by gifts,
grants, contributions or otherwise other persons or organizations of any
kind, provided that such activities are consistent with the foregoing
Organization home page url
Main organization license
GNU General Public License version 2.0 (GPLv2)
Backup Admin
What is the URL for your Ideas page?
What is the main IRC channel for your organization?
What is the main development mailing list for your organization? is our main GSoC list, but there are many
different development lists, given that TPF is an umbrella organisation.
Why is your organization applying to participate in Google Summer of Code 2012?
What do you hope to gain by participating?
Each year that we have participated in GSoC and GCI has been an extraordinary
experience for both the students and the developers. We plan to repeat this
great success.
Besides getting a fair bit of important work done during the summer, one of our
main focus points will be helping our students get to know and interact with the
different parts of our vast community. We do everything we can to encourage
them to stay involved with their project and with the community after the summer
has finished, and to become a part of the Perl world as well as the free
software movement in general. We have had great success in doing so with many of
our previous students.
Did your organization participate in past Google Summer of Codes? If so, please
summarize your involvement and the successes and challenges of your
We have participated in several GSoC and and all GCI programs so far. Our track
record for the previous Summer of Code years is as follows:
2011: 6 out of 6 students passed
2010: 3/5
2009: 8/9
2008: 4/4
2006: 5/5
2005: 8 students entered, not sure how many passed
Out of these, a large number of our passing students have decided to stay
involved in their projects or have continued to contribute to different
projects within our community. Even one of the students we had to fail
in the finals has gone on to become one of our long term contributors.
We used to struggle somewhat with not getting the work produced by our students
merged into their respective projects in a timely manner, but we were able to
improve this situation considerably in the last rounds. To my knowledge, all of
last year's projects are either already shipped as part of an official
release or are close to being shipped in the very near future.
For both my prospective backup admin, Mark, and myself, it'll be the second year
of acting as an org-admin. Before that, I used to be involved as a mentor for
both the Perl Foundation and XMMS2, as well as a student for XMMS2 in an earlier
program. Many of our mentors have a similar depth of experience with GSoC.
If your organization has not previously participated in Google Summer of Code,
have you applied in the past? If so, for what year(s)?
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.
There are many qualities we look for in our mentors, some of which include their
level of involvement in their respective sub-communities, their previous GSoC
and non-GSoC mentoring experience, their expected availability over the course
of the summer, and their activity on various communication channels such as IRC
and mailing lists. We also observe how well they seem to be able to interact
with their prospective student during the student application period.
Given the size of our community, we've not yet had any major problems finding
the right mentor for any project we wanted to accept. In fact, our mentoring
resources are large enough to supply each of our students with at least two
mentors overseeing their work, which we've had a great experience with
previously. For GCI we had a pool of 50 mentors available to help students.
Additionally, we try to make our requirements for mentors as clear as possible
right from the beginning and have written documentation available for them at
What is your plan for dealing with disappearing students?
We take every precaution we can think of to avoid this situation in the first
place. Many of these are described in both our mentor guidelines at as well as our
student guidelines at
These precautions include several ways of encouraging and, in fact, demanding
very frequent communication, always having someone available for the student to
speak to (even if there's a communication breakdown between student and
mentors), as well as taking many measures to ensure we can detect a situation
like this as early as possible.
If all else fails, our measure of last resort is to fail the student as early as
possible, cutting both our own and Google's losses as early as we can.
What is your plan for dealing with disappearing mentors?
Similarly to the previous two questions, our strategy for this boils down to
stating requirements clearly upfront, demanding frequent communication, always
having at least a third person paying close attention to how things are going,
and attempting to catch possible problems as soon as we can.
Should we run into a situation where both a student's primary and backup mentor
disappears, we'll notice quickly and will act accordingly, such as by finding
another suitable candidate in our big mentor pool or, with regret, by aborting
the project.
What steps will you take to encourage students to interact with your project's
community before, during and after the program?
We try to engage with possible students very early, including being as present
as we can in social media, distributing flyers at universities and speaking
about GSoC at conferences and in front of students at universities.
These efforts seem to have been pretty successful already. Even though we're
not yet an accepted organisation, we've had several students contact us in order
to talk about their project ideas and to be put in touch with the core
developers of sub-communities relevant to their interests.
Once officially accepted as an organisation, we'd carry on giving prospective
students a hand in getting in touch with our community by continuing to be
responsive on our GSoC related IRC channels and mailing lists and by putting
them in touch with possible mentors for their ideas as well as with our past
After a student is accepted into the Summer of Code program, they'll be treated
in the same friendly and and welcoming way that every new contributor gets to
experience when joining the Perl community. Additionally, we'll try to assist
our students, if they agree, in meeting up with others in the community in real
life, be it at Perl Mongers meetings or one of our worldwide conferences, to the
best of our abilities.
We do not have any GSoC-specific plans regarding how to deal with our students
after the summer. This mostly depends on whether or not they decide to remain a
part of the community. If they decide to do so, they'll be treated in the same
manner that everyone else is -- respectful and friendly.
We believe our strategy for getting people involved with the Perl world and
becoming a part of it to have been rather successful. Many of our students have
decided to participate beyond the summer, remaining important contributors to
many different projects, even years after their participation in the Summer of
Are you a new organization who has a Googler or other organization to vouch for
you? If so, please list their name(s) here.
Are you an established or larger organization who would like to vouch for a new
organization applying this year? If so, please list their name(s) here.