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Google Summer of Code 2015 @ Open Genome Informatics

Google Summer of Code is a global program that offers student developers stipends to write code for various open source software projects. We work with many open source, free software, and technology-related groups to identify and fund projects over a three month period. Since its inception in 2005, the program has brought together over 8,500 successful student participants from 101 countries and over 8,300 mentors from over 109 countries worldwide to produce over 50 million lines of code. Through Google Summer of Code, accepted student applicants are paired with a mentor or mentors from the participating projects, thus gaining exposure to real-world software development scenarios and the opportunity for employment in areas related to their academic pursuits. In turn, the participating projects are able to more easily identify and bring in new developers. Best of all, more source code is created and released for the use and benefit of all. (Excerpt from the Google Summer of Code website)

Since 2011, the Open Genome Informatics group has served as an "umbrella organization" to a variety of bioinformatics projects, including GMOD and its software projects -- GBrowse, JBrowse, etc.; Galaxy; PortEco; Reactome; SeqWare; WormBase; and others. This year we are welcoming Mouse Genome Informatics (MGI), WebApollo, and the Genome Sequence Informatics (OICR) group.

More information about this year's participating bioinformatics groups can be found here.

To learn more about this year's event and how GSoC works, please refer to the GSoC FAQ.

Mailing lists, IRC, and other ways to get in touch

  • Email: and -- find out more about GSoC, a specific project, or your potential mentor(s).
  • Discussion mailing lists: Genome Informatics Google Groups - ask about our projects; join the community!
  • IRC channel: #genomeinformatics on Freenode.
  • Mentors can email both Robin and Scott to get more information about the program and get signed up.

Project Ideas

There are plenty of challenging and interesting project ideas this year.

These projects include a broad set of skills, technologies and domains, such as GUIs, database integration and algorithms. Students are also encouraged to propose their own ideas related to our projects. If you have strong computer skills and have an interest in biology or bioinformatics, you should definitely apply! Do not hesitate to propose your own project idea: some of the best applications we see are by students that go this route. As long as it is relevant to one of our projects, we will give it serious consideration. Creativity and self-motivation are great traits for open source programmers.

Preparing for GSoC 2015

Right now it is the organization application process for GSoC - we won't know if Genome Informatics has been accepted as a GSOC 2015 mentoring organization until March 2nd. The timeline for GSoC for 2015 has now been posted here. Nevertheless, it is a perfect time if students would like to talk to mentors about project ideas. If you are interested in mentoring, please check the Mentors section below, and contact the organization admin.


More information about writing your application will be available closer to the start of the student application period.


We encourage mentors and mentoring organizations to think about new projects year round! If you'd like help with your ideas page or your separate mentoring org application, please feel to contact the organization admins. Links to advice about mentoring and other resources are available.