MacPorts participation in GSoC 2011

Russell Jones russell.jones at
Wed Feb 16 01:41:32 PST 2011

I've just started John Calcote's "Autotools" ( ), which looks as though it'll be excellent, and I had the idea that macports could have a command that would detect the configuration toolset in use in the distfile for a port, e.g. autotools, scons, cmake, etc, particularly if there wasn't obviously one. This would be useful for people who want to build a particular set of packages, and want to improve the chances that everything will build smoothly by working with upstream developers to utilise one of the configuration systems. Perhaps this is incorrect, but it seems that packages have a better chance of not suffering cross-platform issues that need fixing as things change if such a tool is used. Is this too marginal to be useful? Is it already known and readily available which packages use one and which don't?

As for continued involvement, perhaps ask other projects for stories about GSoC participants who've kept contributing. 

From: macports-dev-bounces at [macports-dev-bounces at] on behalf of Rainer Müller [raimue at]
Sent: 16 February 2011 08:24
To: macports-dev
Subject: MacPorts participation in GSoC 2011


Google has once again announced their Google Summer of Code for 2011.
They will begin to accept mentoring organizations as of February 28
until March 11. In GSoC students get money to work for an open source
project over the summer. MacPorts participated in the years from 2007 to
2010 with a good result (9 successful tasks out of 12 total).

What's bothering me is how bad we are at bonding developers to our
project. In the past years, we got good contributions to our project,
for example the MacPorts GUI. But after the summer is over, most
students just leave and never commit again.

And, while most additions to base have been (slowly) migrated to trunk
and made it into a release, almost no work has happened on the GUI or
MacPorts Web App outside of the Summer of Code tasks.

What could we as community improve here?

If we decide to participate again, we could need some new ideas [1]!
After the last years, most of the tasks marked with an easy to medium
challenge level have been implemented.

Applying students could be fresh in college and do not have any degree
yet. Therefore it's better for us to offer easier tasks to attract more
students as the slot count for our tasks assigned by Google is
influenced by the number of applications. Of course easier tasks are
also less prone to fail.

Any ideas floating in your head you want to see already?

I am asking these questions because they have always been part of the
application form for a Mentoring Organization. The wiki has questions
and answers from last year [2].


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