Two things Tucows can always get behind are open source software initiatives, and computer science education.
Recently we’ve been able to put our money where our mouths are by helping to sponsor the UCOSP (Undergraduate Capstone Open Source Projects), being run by Greg Wilson out of the University of Toronto.
To paraphrase their own website:
Starting in September 2009, computer science students from several universities in Canada and the US are taking part in a set of joint capstone projects in order to learn first-hand what distributed development is like. Each team will have students from two or three schools, and will use a mix of agile and open source processes under the supervision of a faculty or industry lead.
What it really means is that students from schools all over Canada (and some from the US and Caribbean) get to earn course credits by working in teams on an open-source project – for example, ElmCity, Ingres, Thunderbird, Eclipse4Edu, etc. It’s a multi-layered challenge for them as they need to figure out how to work in a distributed team, plan their time vs. their other courses, learn how to participate in an open-source project, and…oh yeah, code useful contributions!
MarkUs: Young coders that participated in the UCOSP Code Sprint
The kickoff was back at the beginning of October, when all participants were brought together in Toronto for a weekend to meet each other, learn about their projects, and figure out how they would coordinate their efforts. From there the students have been working remotely using Agile methodologies, and blogging their progress.
For us at Tucows it’s great to get involved with some bright, budding talent and help them get a taste for delivering in ‘the real world’.
If you want to know more about the program, or get involved, go ahead and visit the website!
Jody Stocks is the Senior Director of Software Engineering at Tucows Inc.
The photo is courtesy of Greg Wilson, UCOSP.