The application period for the Google Summer of Code 2022 starts on April 4th (full timeline for GSoC 2022). With this post we give some general information about the ideal contributor application from our point of view. The recommendations we give here hold for all of the proposed projects, but we will also try to give information specific to the respective projects in the corresponding neurostars threads. For a full list of Brian-related projects, see the end of this post.
Before you consider submitting an application, make sure you fit the general eligibility criteria. Note that several online sources, including the GSoC FAQ, still sometimes refer to Google Summer of Code students instead of contributors. This is now a misnomer, though, since the program is open to all “open source beginners” (at least 18 years of age), regardless of whether they are enrolled as students or not. That said, you need to be available to invest around 175h to 350h (depending on the project) over the summer, so this program is hardly compatible with a full-time employment.
Please contact us in the respective neurostars discussion, to make us aware that you are interested in the project. This is also the best place to ask about anything that is unclear in the project description, or about any questions or doubts you have.
Your application should convince us that:
- You understand what the project is about: what is the problem or missing feature in Brian (or related project) that the project is trying to address? How does the proposed project solve the problem or adds the feature?
- You understand what steps are necessary to implement the proposed solution, and can give rough estimates of how long these steps will take.
- You have most or all of the necessary skills to implement the proposed solution and can acquire the missing skills during the project.
- You can commit the required time over the summer. Note that the program has some flexibility in the schedule. Importantly, please be realistic and honest – do not try to make the schedule work by planning with, say, 70h of work in a single week.
For all of the above points, please fill it out with concrete details and link to other sources where helpful. For example, you might want to link to specific bits of the documentation that you deem relevant to the project and discuss them. Regarding your skills, they are ideally illustrated by concrete evidence as well, e.g. a link to a student project you wrote in Python, or a link to a website you set up.
While it is not a strict requirement, we highly recommend to base your application on the INCF GSoC Application template. As soon as you have a draft that you’d like to have feedback on, please contact us directly (e.g. over a direct message on neurostars) with a link to the draft – a Google Docs document is probably the easiest solution.
As a final note: we cannot promise how many students we can accept to work on Brian with GSoC this year – it is even possible that we cannot accept anyone! To give you a rough idea of how the process works: after reviewing the received applications, all the projects participating under the umbrella of the INCF will come up with a list of students they’d like to accept. The INCF will then transmit the number of requested “slots” to Google, which will finally decide the number of slots that it assigns to each organisation. This number of assigned slots is typically lower than the requested number, therefore not all students that were reviewed positively can be accepted. For a project like Brian, realistically we can only expect to receive a single slot and therefore only accept a single student for one of our proposed projects…
We hope that this makes the application process a bit clearer, looking forward to discussing your applications, and hopefully to work with one of you over this summer!
Neurostars discussions for Brian-related projects
- Project Idea 10.1: Make Brian run in the web browser via Pyodide (175/350 h)
- Project Idea 10.2: Make Brian run in the web browser via emscripten (175/350 h)
- Project Idea 10.3: Update Brian documentation infrastructure (175 h)
- Project Idea 10.4: Improved OpenMP support (synaptic propagation) (175/350 h)
- Project Idea 10.5: Improved parser for model descriptions (175 h)
- Project Idea 4.2: Brian2GeNN (350 h)