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Google Code-in – In the Top 5! Woot!

Hello all! I can, (unofficially*) announce that I’ve achieved the 5th rank out of the participating 360 students (view rankings) in the Google Code-in competition by acquiring 112 points from 34 tasks!

I’ve tried to put all my thoughts into this single post, so you might find it a bit long, filled with a lot of emoticons. πŸ˜›

What is Google Code-in? And what does it have to do with me?

From Google Code-in’s FAQ:

Following on from the success of theΒ Google Summer of CodeΓ’β€žΒ’ program, Google is holding a contest for pre-university students (e.g., high school and secondary school students) with the aim of encouraging young people to participate in open source. We will work with open source organizations, each of whom will provide a list of tasks to be completed by student contestants. Tasks can be anything a project needs help with, from bug fixes to writing documentation to user experience research.

Coming back to what it has to do with me, I’m a pre-university student enrolled in a high school and 15 years old. Did I just say 15, yes I did! πŸ™‚

I mainly participated in this competition because (and got to know about it when) the organisation WordPress announced that it was participating in this competition – and as I’m very much familiar with their code base and especially bbPress‘s (because it has been almost more than a year since I’ve been developing on it), I looked forward to this, participated in the competition and finally acquired a good rank. πŸ˜‰

And what all did I do in it?

Coding tasks for the bbPress project (and having a lot of fun doing that and bugging John James Jacoby, my mentor, all the time :P) and some translation tasks. As far as I remember, I was the only one (except 1 or 2 – who did a task each) who took up bbPress tasks. So, I feel a bit proud of myself that other people found it difficult πŸ˜‰ – I know, my assumption might be wrong :P). You may search bbPress Changesets for “props to GautamGupta via GCI” on the bbPress Trac itself (while logged in) or go here to see the list of tasks done by me. πŸ˜‰

And what all did I achieve?

  1. Knowledge – Really, I didn’t know all the things I did at first and didn’t have that pace which I acquired later – I tried, I did and I learnt new things.
  2. Experience – The experience working under a the cool mentor John James Jacoby. πŸ˜‰
  3. Trip to Google Headquarters, Mountain View, California as I came in the top 10! πŸ˜€
  4. 500 USD and a Google T-shirt (more details about the prizes here).
  5. And as a I mentioned earlier, I got the 5th rank out of the participating 360 students (view rankings) by acquiring 112 points from 34 tasks though I had expected myself to come in the top 4 (first three were way ahead), I couldn’t because of my school work etc.

What will I do now?

  1. The first thing on my to-do is writing some tutorial blog posts, of the things I did in the tasks. Done: #1, more to come.
  2. Complete the last task which I wasn’t able to due to time restrictions – forum reply counts. Done.
  3. Contribute more. πŸ˜‰ Doing. (Forever)
  4. Test out NetBeans (on JJJ’s recommendation). maybelater. Probably, will wait till it has proper Trac/SVN support – didn’t work for me, or I was too lazy to not read the docs properly. Started using it on my Mac. πŸ™‚
  5. Complete my school work which has got a lot pending. Done.
  6. And sleep. πŸ˜› Done.

* The list of official winners would be announced on 14 Feb 2011, but it would be based on the rank list and I’m pretty much sure that it would remain the same or at least I’d be in there. The winners have been announced. πŸ™‚

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33 Comments

  1. Outstanding job Gautam! You did a great job and it was a lot of fun watching you evolve and learn. You were an outstanding student and I look forward to working with you more! πŸ™‚

  2. Awesome work Gautam!

    I pulled down a branch of bbPress no less than a few hours ago and was stoked to see how far it’s come as a standard alone plugin for WordPress!

    Thanks so much for all the time you and JJJ have put into this. It’s amazing to see someone so young being so passionate about bbPress and WordPress. I’m sure we’ll all be keeping an eye on you in future! πŸ™‚

  3. Great dude…. keep it up.
    Carry on your passion and become the next generation google guys.
    I found that you have done mainly wordpress tasks.
    Is this because of your expertise in this cms organization?
    Are you willing to do tasks for other organizations?
    Cheers,
    Sriram

    • Thank you Sriram! You’re right, I mainly did WordPress tasks because I have more knowledge of the codebase of WordPress (& bbPress).

      The competition is over, so I cannot do any other task. πŸ™‚

    • Haha.. thanks Rahul! You have been one of my inspirations, especially as a passionate blogger and I try to become like you. πŸ˜‰

      I think that too. πŸ˜›

    • I am not lying. I used Computer/Internet first time when I was 17 πŸ˜€
      I learned PHP/wordpress just 3 years back. πŸ˜‰

    • Well, I’d say you don’t learn languages *to* participate in Code-in. You learn because you like to learn, Code-in is just a way to give you self-satisfaction. Languages depend on the open source organizations participating, there is usually a variety of orgs participating who have their softwares written in PHP, C/C++, Python, perl, Java etc. There are getting started pages available online for the organizations which participated in the previous years – you might want to have a look at those. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks a lot Gautam for replying to my question… am sure you will be a very succesful man one day.

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