Google Summer of Code (
is a global programme which offers student developers stipends to write
code for various open source software projects.  Students work for 3
months on a project with mentoring from open source developers, and
receive a stipend which is paid in 3 stages – if they successfully
complete the project, the full stipend is between US$3000 and US$6600
depending on the location of the student’s University (it’s US$5400
for the UK).

Xapian ( is an open source search library, and has
been accepted as a mentoring organisation again this year.  We’re
particularly keen to encourage students with a background in Information
Retrieval to work on Xapian projects – for example, in previous years
students have worked on improving support for Arabic and Chinese,
built a Learning to Rank framework on top of Xapian, implemented various
ranking schemes (Divergence from Randomness, Language Modelling,
BM25+/PL2+/Dir+/Piv+), added support for generating dynamic snippets,
worked on clustering, and implemented diversification of search results.

The programme is open to both undergraduate and postgraduate students,
and to most countries – for full eligibility requirements see: Goggle Developers

Students don’t travel to participate – they work remotely and interact
with the mentors by IRC, email, etc.

We have a list of project ideas for students, though we are also happy
for students to come up with their own suggestions for projects:

Contact details are also on the link above.

Applications open on March 25th and close on April 9th at 18:00 UTC
(beware the deadline is very strictly enforced), but we encourage
students to start to discuss potential projects with us now.

The full timeline is here:

For some students the coding period overlaps with exams, but in such
cases it’s possible to start coding early and then taking a break for


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