GUADEC 2012: How It Was

    Two weeks ago in excellent Spanish town Coruña (La Coruna) completed conference GUADEC (GNOME U sers A nd D evelopers C onference, pronounced "gvadek"). In this article I would like to tell you how it was, what I learned within 7 days of this wonderful event and what needs to be done to get to this conference. Caution photo!

    A Coruña at night

    What is GUADEC?

    As the name implies, this event brings together all the developers of the GNOME environment. It is attended by developers, designers, translators, technical writers of the project, as well as interns. Since I am a student myself, of course, I will focus on what needs to be done to become an intern and why it is useful for students.

    The conference consists of several parts - the main sections, Lightning Talks (if someone knows the translation of this term - I will be very grateful), BoF (I'll write a little later about this) and hackfests.

    Conference participants

    Students and mentors

    Volunteers (people who provided the conference)

    Main sections

    The main sections of GUADEC are an important part of this event. They feature the most prominent figures of the GNOME project and the Open Source world. The task of the main sections is to convey important questions to the listener. For instance:

    • The Anonymity Problem Online and the Tor Project - “The Tor Project: Anonymity Online,” Jacob Appelbaum
    • Educational use of the GNOME environment - “Sugar: using the GNOME platform to build a learning platform”, Simon Schampijer
    • OS Design and Architecture - “The UI and the OS”, Lennart Poettering
    • ... and many other equally important topics, a full list of which you can find by looking at the conference program

    Lightning talks

    Lightning talks - 3-5-minute reports designed to focus on one specific problem, or a brief description of the project, its purpose, etc. Over the course of the conference, there were two types of such reports - reports by experienced developers, designers, translators, and intern reports. Both were very interesting.


    BoF is an abbreviation of “Bird of Feather”, which in turn is an abridged version of the phrase “Birds of a feather flock together”, the Russian-language analogue of which will be the expression “Two pair of boots”. Those. this section implies that people who solve one common problem (for example, designers, translators, the team responsible for accessibility) get together and discuss their vision of this problem, find out what other problems the community should pay attention to, etc. Unfortunately, I did not visit BoF, because during them I had the opportunity to talk with several developers from GStreamer, discuss some aspects of my project, and I could not help using it.


    The name of this section speaks for itself - the goal of hackfests is the intensive development of new functionality in the project, bug fixes, refactoring. The theme of hackfest is determined by the developers themselves and everyone can take part in it.

    How to take part in the conference?

    Anyone can take part in the conference. To do this, register on the website . On the same site you can book a hotel room and pay for meals. Stay tuned for updates on the site so you don't miss the next GUADEC.

    GSOME students working in GNOME or whose projects are related to GNOME (such as GStreamer) and who plan to become members of the GNOME community, GNOME Foundation community members can be sponsored by the GNOME Foundation to attend this conference.

    Student programs

    Google summer of code
    First of all, I’d like to briefly talk about the Google Summer of Code program. This program is designed to attract students to open-source projects. It consists in the fact that at the beginning of the program, the student selects the open-source organization of interest from the list on the program website (and this year the list included 175 organizations, so everyone could choose exactly what he was interested in), choose the idea for his project ( invents himself, or uses one of the proposed ones) and submits an application with a detailed description of the vision of the problem. If the application is liked by the organization, it is approved and the student can begin to work. A mentor is attached to each participant - a person from the organization to which the student applied. The mentor's task is to observe the student’s progress, help him move in the right direction, give advice.

    Throughout the summer, program participants work on their projects, communicate with the community and, if their organizations require, prepare reports on the work done. There are also two mandatory reports that are compiled directly on the program website - Midterm evaluation and Final Evaluation. The reports are compiled by both students and mentors. The reports must indicate your impressions of working in the organization, evaluate your progress, communication with the mentor, etc. Neither the mentor nor the student can see each other's reports.

    I take part in the program for the second time and I am not going to stop there. Also, I can not help but mention an interesting fact related to my university (Chernihiv State Technological University) - it is in the top ten universities by the number of students accepted into the program. And, as far as I know, not one of the students failed the Midterm evaluation and all my colleagues successfully reached the finish line. Guys, congratulations to you! You are great!

    Why is GSoC cool? Because in one summer you will meet a lot of interesting people, get invaluable experience, make your contribution to the open-source world and get $ 5000 at the end of the program.

    Program website .

    Gnome outreach program for women
    In order to attract the fair sex to contributions to the open-source community, the GNOME Foundation has created its own program, which is held in the winter (yes, girls, you can also participate in GSoC after that). The program is similar to GSoC except that projects can relate not only to coding, but also to design, work on documentation, and marketing.

    Upon successful completion of the program, as in the case of GSoC, participants receive the same scholarship. In addition, they may also ask the GNOME organization to sponsor a trip to GUADEC. Applications from GNOME interns are a high priority.
    Program page on
    For girls there is also an Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship program from Google.

    If you have any questions, ask them in the comments or by habrpost. I will be happy to answer.


    Thanks to Google for such a cool program like GSoC. Thanks to the GStreamer and PiTiVi communities for their support during the program. Also very grateful to the GNOME Foundation for sponsoring the trip to GUADEC. Photos taken by Ana Rey, thanks for that too.

    Special thanks to my girlfriend for convincing me to visit GUADEC!

    Also popular now: