Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Some ideas about this year's Google Summer of Code

This year's GSoC ended several weeks ago but I'm kind of busy working on open source community contribution in China and don't have time to say something about that till now. Really appreciate that Google provide this chance for me to get to know the open source world and be one of them. Also, thanks to GNOME and my mentor David for their time and effort to get us engaged.

To be honest, I didn't spend so much time on my project this year compared to other students I know. But I will continue to contribute and help other people around me to get involved. Working with those people willing to share and help really enlightened me and I want to get more people to know about that since open source is not very popular in China nowadays. In fact one of my schoolmates has already asked me the details about that and said he would like to try next year.

Throughout this summer, I've been focusing on Evolution Active-Sync, the backend of Evolution for the supporting of the protocol called Microsoft Active Sync. It's not a big project and not used by as many people as GTK or Evolution itself, but still my work helped someone, and that makes me going on.

After the GSoC, I've done some work related to the open source community in China. We have a organization called kaiyuanshe and they did some work to help promote open source. Last weekend they organized the Apache Roadshow in Beijing and I was one of the volunteers. Also, I gave a speech about my experience in GSoC on the conference. Although it's not the GNOME community, but I think sometimes we should contribute to the open source world as a whole without caring which one it is. Hope our effort would enlarge the open source force in China.

Sunday, August 16, 2015


I participated the GNOME.Asia's BOF with Oliver, Emily, Ali and other people. It's very great to have so many people care about GNOME Asia and willing to help. We shared the history of GNOMA Asia and discussed the future plan. I've never been to a GNOME Asia Summit before, but I thought it's a good chance for us to communicate and hope I can go to the next one. We discussed many issues, like whether co-hosting the next GNOME Asia Summit with other organization, the ways to promote GNOME Asia, how we can get it better, and so on. Also, the trip after the BOF was a nice journey, Sweden is beautiful by the way~

Volunteer work at GUADEC

I applied for volunteer before GUADEC, hoping to help other people. But it seems that there were too many volunteers to be scheduled, so I'm not arranged and can help when needed. Since we only had two rooms for speech at the venue, there was not much work to do. I just did some cleaning work at the end of the core conference. Hope to help again, maybe at next GUADEC~

Presentation at GAUDEC

I presented a lightning talk about my GSoC project at GUADEC. Just a few minutes and several slides, but it's a good chance for other people to know my work. More than ten students gave their speech at the intern's lightning talk, and it's really great to know that there are some other students just like me. We have a nice time sharing each other's project and ideas.

Next day we had an intern's lunch. It was a good opportunity for us to have some discussions about our work for GNOME and our contribution experience.

Friday, August 7, 2015

New friends at GUADEC (updated)

I've met many people at GUADEC these days, and I got many new friends.

Yesterday when I and Jonathen come to the hostel where sponsored people live, it's a little bit early, so we just wait at the lobby. Here we met Markus, Ankit, Siska and other people, and we had some nice conversations before check in. After that, we went to lunch together (Although it's about 3:30 in the afternoon) and had a really wonderful day.

At the pre-registration party yesterday night, we had a drink with GUADEC people here and met some new friends like Oliver and Skyman.

Also, my roommates, Jonathan, Patrick and Marcin, are very nice people. We spend a good time together.

I think I'll make more friends here. With beautiful weather and friendly people, I love the place, I love GUADEC!

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Summary of work from July 21st to August 3rd

I've finished the coding part of the migration from GConf to GSettings, and now is the debugging time. Since I will attend the GUADEC, there may be not much time for this project, hope I can finish the GSettings part before deadline. Also, I'll have a lightning talk at GUADEC about my GSoC project, hope people will enjoy that.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Summary of work from July 7th to July 20th

I started with the migration from GConf to GSettings/DConf, but I got some problems. I've asked desktop-devel-list for help, and Mr. Crha gave me some advice. I'm still working on that.

Before I find the best way to do that, I've done some trivial works to make EAS newer. These works should be continued regardless of the finish of this project.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Code Version Control Problem

Code version control using Git or SVN seems like too trivial to some small project, but today's experience taught me a lesson.

We, two classmates and me, are developing a small and simple distributed in-memory key-value storage system (like a system called piccolo developed by Professor Jinyang Li's team in New York University) these days. One of them had constructed the basic framework several days before, and we have been adding new functions based on his work. We did our version control work by simply modifying the old code, since we thought it's just a demo system and should not be hard to maintain. But the truth is that coding is easy, but merging our work really drives us crazy. We have to modify our new code manually to make it adapted to others changes. I have to admit that this kind of version control deprives all of my passion for coding something.

Today I learned that even if you are developing a really small project, wise version control is indispensable. A beard well lathered is half shaved, though.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Summary of work from June 23rd to July 6th

I've been working though my final exams in the last two weeks. Hope I can get some good scores.

About our project, I've passed the midterm evaluation. Since the time left is not very casual, I will focus on this after the last exam and make EAS better.

By the way, I may participate the GUADEC 2015 if I can get the visa. Hope to have a nice experience with the people there.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Summary of work from June 9th to June 22th

In the past two weeks I've finished my planned work before midterm. Here are the details:

To bring the GUI configuration of module EAS back to use, several things are done: the basic configuration and collection code for configuration, the EAS server auto-detect aspect, and some update to the deprecated usage of gtk+ in our project. Some steps are similar to the EWS module, so I borrowed some code from EWS.

Since I will have several final exams in the few weeks, the remaining part of my project will be covered a little bit later, maybe start at mid-July.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Summary of work from May 26th to June 8th

After two weeks of coding, the task planned before midterm has been partly accomplished. Here is the work:

The main part of the configuration UI of EAS has been finished, including the whole configuration step and the auto-discover function. More details will be added and we will finish that after some test.

There are several exams ahead, so I will focus on this project recently and hope to finish the work earlier to save some time for those tests.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Summary of work from May 12th to May 25th

These two weeks are right before GSoC's start of coding, so I did some research work and made my first commit.

1. Some research work: digging into the Evolution-ActiveSync module, learning the implementation of the outdated EPlugin, and the usage of EExtension.

2. First commit: Trying to bring the GUI configuration of EAS back to use. Tested on the Evolution on my laptop, and waiting for my mentor's opinion. It should be a good start, I believe.

Helping people around the world is something wonderful. I also joined the TED translation group to translate the subtitle into Chinese so that more people, especially the people in my country, can reach the greatest idea in the world. Keep working.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Summary of work from April 27th to May 11th

In the first two weeks of our project, I did some work with our community and my mentor since it's the community bonding period.

1. Some things regarding to GNOME community, like an introduction letter, a GNOME wiki page about my project, and an application for Planet GNOME (though not accepted yet). Also, IRC and mailing list are involved.

2. Communication with my mentor, Mr. Woodhouse. I've figured out the implementation of the first step of my project with the help from Mr. Woodhouse, and are working on that now. It will be committed soon.

Thanks GNOME to give me this chance to make my contribution to the open source world, and I'm on my way~

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Participation of GSoC 2015

Got accepted by this year's GSoC, and following are some tips for anyone who may be interested to apply:

Feel free to contact your potential mentor: mentors are all friendly and kind people, they will be glad to guide anyone who is willing to contribute to the open source world(at least in my experience), and their opinions really matter in your apply. So please pay more attention on your communication. Even you are not accepted, their help will makes your coding easier.

Pay attention to the project you want to apply: to show that you are the right person for them, you have to dig into the project and make some patches. Maybe it's not easy for a person who is totally new to a project to make a patch, but you really need one to show your programming skill and interest in that project.

There are a lot of helpful information on the Internet about GSoC, but these two tips above will make you special out of other applicants. Hope it will help you~