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Google Summer of Code Program Overhauled 37

Posted by Zonk
from the learning-a-new-way dept.
lisah writes "Though at first glance Google's Summer of Code (SOC) 2007 looks pretty much the same as last year's event, it turns out much of the program has been overhauled based on feedback from past participants. The biggest change is the amount of lead time given to applicants and mentoring organizations in the hopes of increasing the applicant pool and allowing everyone to be better organized once the program gets officially underway on May 28. SOC organizers say they are also aware that slow payment to last year's participants has been a bone of contention and they are taking steps to 'make sure that the problem is diminished or will not happen again.'"
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Google Summer of Code Program Overhauled

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  • ... that slow payment to last year's participants has been a bone of contention ...

    Google doesn't want to be planting any seeds for a "winter of discontent" after a busy summer. There's enough Google bombs as it is.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    i just wished they would let regular school drop-outs, heck just regular people
    participate in the program :( instead of having students
    waste their time in the summer when they should be partying
    • I graduate this summer. I heard of this the 1st time, last year; but I broke my hip last summer and could not participate.
      I dont much care for the money, but it would have been a great opportunity to interact with the opensource community and I regret not getting an opportunity to do that!
      Sometimes, rules have a queer way of not being fair!
  • Just a thought... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MikeRT (947531) on Friday February 23, 2007 @12:50PM (#18124084) Homepage
    Presumably, most of these students are from middle or upper class families if they're doing this work, in college, outside of a first world country. Surely they have access to a bank that can covert dollars to the local currency. Now call me crazy, but it would seem to me that Google could just deposit the dollars into their local bank account and the intern could convert it as needed. I would assume that either way, a conversion fee would be involved. If it comes down to it, I would imagine that most interns would rather have the hassle of being paid in dollars on a regular basis like interns in most companies in the US, than have Google's bureaucrats go through the process of finding out how to convert the currency, especially knowing how slow most HR people are.
    • Re:Just a thought... (Score:5, Informative)

      by chrisd (1457) * <chrisd@dibona.com> on Friday February 23, 2007 @01:04PM (#18124260) Homepage
      So last year SoC students were in 90 countries encompassing some 73 currencies, and for some , your tactic might work, but in many, it would simply mean that they could not ever use the money. We have to do things legally and right, not just the expedient. An example: To pay someone in Brazil we have to accompany each of the 3 payments to any student with a document detailing why we want the reals and what they are being paid for. Then the student must take the docs to a local bank to receive the wire, and there are often fees. It's easy to come down on the accountants and bureaucrats and everything, but when you get down into it, many of the countries make it difficult to interact financially with their citizens. What you are recommending, in some countries, is illegal and could put our students in danger of being arrested. I'd rather a payment be slow.
      • by pla (258480)
        Then the student must take the docs to a local bank to receive the wire, and there are often fees

        In what countries can you not legally give (reasonably small sums of) money to someone??? Documentation of why they received it? "Services rendered", "gift", or in some of these bass-ackwards places, just write "dowry". Or if local banks cause the problem, just send them cash in their local currency - problem solved.

        This involves a mere $4500. Not suitcases full of unmarked bills.

        Why do you think all
        • by Beuno (740018)

          In what countries can you not legally give (reasonably small sums of) money to someone??? Documentation of why they received it? "Services rendered", "gift", or in some of these bass-ackwards places, just write "dowry". Or if local banks cause the problem, just send them cash in their local currency - problem solved.

          This involves a mere $4500. Not suitcases full of unmarked bills.

          Argentina and Brazil for starters.
          4500 dollars is around 14000 argentine pesos, which is a bit more then most people make in a year. Doesn't sound like "mere $4500" very much.

          You have to remember once in a while that whatever applies in the US doesn't apply everywhere.

      • Re:Just a thought... (Score:4, Informative)

        by PhoenixSnow (994523) on Friday February 23, 2007 @02:59PM (#18125956)
        I, for one, am a citizen of a country where it's illegal to hold ANY foreign currency, whether it's in my bank account or in cash unless you own a business with a special license to conduct business with foreign sources. Of course, it takes a few years to get that special license if you comply with due process. The government intends to keep the citizens as disconnected from the outside world as they can. It's true there are not that many countries like this but some still exist to this day.
      • by fr1kk (810571)
        Actually I had no idea that SoC participants got paid. I planned on applying with the intention of volunteer work - I guess this makes the program that much better.

        Blaine
      • by schlick (73861)
        Pal Pal..... duh?
      • by Plunky (929104)
        I find it strange that Google does not already have a bank account in Brazil, stuffed to the brim with Reals.
        Have you never done business with Brazilians before, or do you require all payments to be made in US dollars to a US bank account?
        obviously, rinse and repeat for most of the countries in the world..
  • by zr-rifle (677585) <zedr&zedr,com> on Friday February 23, 2007 @01:17PM (#18124448) Homepage
    this means they are finally gonna get a tan this summer?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Well, if Google has serious problems with the payroll and expenses of its own employees (frequent late or wrong payments, etc.), I wonder how it could be with those participating in this program.

    If people knew of all the internal administrative problems within Google...

  • SOC 2007 idea for OLPC http://wiki.laptop.org/go/wixi [laptop.org].. wixi is a wiki-based multilingual language learning interface.. can work w/ OLPC, MediaWiki, OmegaWiki, etc.. looking for CS students to apply.. win $4500 and a billion users.. SUERTE!

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours. -- Milton Berle

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