Teams 2017

Posted on by Maria

This year we got 190 applications, which is twice more than last year (can you imagine our surprised faces?!). The applications came from 21 different countries, some of them new to RGSoC: Albania, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka.

With happiness came lots of work selecting the teams who would be best fitting for the program. 19 people with different backgrounds rated the applications for almost two months; it was a real challenge, as there were many really good applications. Two countries did especially great job this year: four teams from Germany and four teams from India made it to our TOP-10! Well done!
Besides that, we were really happy to see that some students who applied last year have submitted applications again and been selected!

RGSoC Teams 2017RGSoC Teams 2017 (Image: Maria Ronacher)

Selecting the teams means also selecting the projects which will participate in the Summer of Code. We are very proud to say that this year we have a very diverse technology stack! Time to think about a RGSoC rebranding! :D

Project technologies 2017Project technologies 2017 (Image: Maria Ronacher)

The saddest part of the selection process is saying ‘no’ to some of the teams. As much as we want more diversity in tech, our budget is not big enough to fund all the teams that apply to RGSoC. We want to encourage all students who haven’t been selected this year to continue their path in programming and Open Source. While RGSoC is a great opportunity to learn and contribute, there are other ways to do it. One of them would be to contribute to the project you chose when applied to RGSoC (or any other project submitted to RGSoC 2017); most mentors would be happy to help you make your first steps in Open Source. That said, please be assured that you are very welcome to apply to RGSoC 2018.

But let’s not make you wait any longer. Here are the 20 teams of RGSoC 2017.

200 OK (Ipshita and Prachi)

Location: New Delhi, India
Project: coala

276linesofCode (Shravika and Brihi)

Location: New Delhi, India
Project: Tessel

Alexa (Alexandra and Aleksandra)

Location: Moscow, Russia
Project: JoopeA Club

Berlin Diamonds (Kaja and Jen)

Location: Berlin, Germany
Project: Discourse

Clojurians (Chris and Saskia)

Location: Berlin, Germany
Project: re-frame

Code Bears (Neta and Rete)

Location: Berlin, Germany
Project: diaspora*

Code Hoppers (Roselyne and Cynthia)

Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Project: OpenFarm

Codeaholics (Jona and Xheni)

Location: Tirana, Albania
Project: Nextcloud

IfPairElseUnknown (Sophie and Jenny)

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Project: if me - mental health communication app

NK42 (Marie and Ines)

Location: Berlin, Germany
Project: Foodsaving and Foodsharing

Pivotal London (Kara and Emma)

Location: London, United Kingdom
Project: Babel

RailsGyn (Amanda and Juliana)

Location: Goiânia, Brazil
Project: RGSoC: The Teams App

Serv0101 (Rakhi and Neha)

Location: Bangalore, India
Project: Servo

Team Fusion (Janakshi and Kalpani)

Location: Kegalle, Sri Lanka
Project: OpenDF

Team Impact Devs (Jessica and Vanessa)

Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Project: WorldBrain - Verifying the Internet with Science

Victorious Secret (Saumya and Katyayani)

Location: New Delhi, India
Project: The Processing Foundation

Volunteer Teams

Banshee Bandits (Lillian and Shelby)

Location: New York, United States

Bundledore (Anagha and Amrita)

Location: Kollam, India
Project: AFDC League Management System

Gemini (Ramya and Akarsha)

Location: New Delhi, India
Project: Susi AI Server

prodyoGEEKY (Protichi and Nikita)

Location: Delhi, India
Project: OpenLMIS: vaccine and medicine logistics for low- and middle-income countries

We are looking forward to the Summer of Code with these great teams! Stay tuned — you’ll have the possibility to learn more about each team when they introduce themselves on our blog in a few weeks.

5 Years of RGSoC

Posted on by Laura

In 2013, we kicked off the first edition of RGSoC: What an adventure it’s been since then! 2017 marks our 5th birthday (time flies!), and with a little bit of your last-minute help and support, we have 4 days left on our campaign and with your help can reach our funding goal — let’s celebrate this moment by taking some time together to look back and see where it all started. #5YearsOfRGSoC

The very beginning

Back in the day, we started the program kind of low-key, and the very small organiser team at the time managed to “just make things happen” by joining forces with members of the local Berlin community — one example among the many is Becci, who provided us with awesome illustrations for our website and even designed a team building game for the 2013 teams. Without too many frills (and with a lot of cat gifs), RGSoC managed to raise roughly $80,000 to support women entering Open Source. Because of the grassroots nature of the program, registration at the time was open until June 7th, meaning roughly a month before the summer of code started! Pretty wild, considering our deadline for registration in 2017 was March 8th.

Our 2013 logo

Blast from the past! Our 2013 logo (Image: RGSoC)

Our participants in 2013 (19, for a total of 10 teams) were spread out across the globe and some were working remotely with each other; we had teams in Poland, the USA, Colombia, Germany, and more!

2013 team locations

Location of selected teams in 2013. (Image: Laura Gaetano/RGSoC)

One of the special highlights of 2013 was the amazing support we got from the community, validating our work right away. The (now sadly defunct) boxer shorts company “Unerdwear” even did a pre-launch of their unisex limited edition Rails Girls boxers, and all profits were donated to RGSoC. <3

More volunteers, better support

2014 was the year we got a little more organised. We introduced a Code of Conduct and our Trust Committee, to help us handle Code of Conduct breaches; that year, we also introduced supervisors from the beginning of the summer (instead of halfway-through as we did in 2013), to help better support all of our teams, sponsored and volunteering. While our application rate stayed roughly the same, we were able to collect more funds for our teams and had participants in new locations (such as Peru and Australia).

The organisers team also grew a lot throughout the preparation phase of the 2014 edition — so many people from the Berlin tech scene and beyond started helping out, working on the Teams App, offering to supervise, coach, and write posts on our blog. You can find a few of them here <3 — with their messages about RGSoC and the soundtrack of their summer!

90% of our participants stay in tech

In our third year (2015), we started to focus a little bit more on our website and appearance to the outside. With the help of Claudi (our volunteer designer with superpowers!) we reworked our landing page, giving it a cleaner look — that’s the very same version we have today! We also surveyed our 2013 and 2014 participants, and found out some amazing facts: Our program empowered them in such a way that out of the surveyed participants, 90% of them found jobs in the tech industry, 55% were still contributing to Open Source software regularly, and 8% had even founded their own company or start-up; this reinforced our belief that RGSoC was changing women’s lives for the better.

Ruby Heroes

In 2016, a lot happened: for the first time, the amount of applicants doubled from the previous year, showing an extremely high interest worldwide to participate in the program. As we did the previous year, we surveyed our past participants to find out where they were at and from the survey results and found out that 75% of the 36 participants who answered the survey were still contributing to Open Source Software and that roughly 95% were either studying, working, or doing an internship in a tech field.
In spring, Anika, Sara and I flew to Kansas City to receive a Ruby Hero Award on the stage of RailsConf on behalf of Rails Girls Summer of Code — for the program’s work in making the Ruby community a better place. You can read more about this, about the context and our feelings about collecting this award in this blog post.

2013–2016 selected participants

All selected participants, 2013–2016. (Image: Laura Gaetano)

That year, we went on to accept 40 participants overall (16 sponsored teams and 4 volunteer teams, the same as the previous year). While 4 volunteer teams may seem like a small number, especially in comparison to to our numbers in the past, it’s important to note that volunteer teams get the same support from us as sponsored teams do, so we need to limit the number of participants that our team can handle. And that’s a good thing! That way we can ensure everyone gets treated the same way and gets the same possibilities — which is also why all teams, regardless of whether they are volunteer or sponsored, go through the same application process.

Can’t wait for May

This year, we received 190 team applications — more applications than ever before, more than double the applications of last year, even though our application process has developed into a very extensive and competitive one and is far from the one we had in 2013! With every year, we’ve improved the process a little bit, taking feedback from coaches, mentors, students, and supervisors into account. We’re currently in the middle of our selection process, and can’t wait to get to know our 2017 teams.

2013–2017 submitted applications

Look at the growth in the number of team applications over the years! (Image: Laura Gaetano)

Help us grow

Our team has grown, but it’s still pretty small (3 core organisers, 10 organisers in total) considering all the work that goes into making RGSoC a reality every year. This work is possible only because of long-term commitment from organisers (who are mostly volunteers) and from sponsors, who help fund teams every year. This year, with 380 people applying in total, we’ve set ourselves the goal to fund 12 teams (24 participants) across the globe; and for this, we need your help!

2017 donation progress bar

Our donations as of April 10th, 2017! (Source:

In the next 4 days, you will still be able to donate to RGSoC to help support teams for this year. We’ve already funded 10 teams with the help of our sponsors and of individual donors — but we know we can do better! If there are any companies you want to reach out to, we’ve prepared a small document for you with a step-by-step to reach out to your contacts. Let’s get the last one and a half team funded!

Map of team locations, 2013–2016

Map of team locations, 2013–2016. (Image: Anika Lindtner)

Team Reactives at FOSSASIA!

Posted on by Team Reactives

Hello again RGSoC Blog Readers!

Shwetha from Team Reactives here and I was excited to experience FOSSASIA at Singapore Science Centre!

At the Entrance

At the entrance - Source: Team Reactives

I was tempted to spend all day at the science centre’s famous VR gallery with a full fledged flight simulator where you’ll be able to flap and take off just like a bird but was glad I stopped by the Microsoft Mission to Mars workshop by James Lee where I got to learn how to build my very own conversationally intelligent personal chatbot using Microsoft LUIS AI.

VR Flight Simuator

Mars Mission

Source: Team Reactives

I later attended several talks on computer vision and machine learning, one that stood out to me was the talk on machine learning in medical imaging by 15 year old Gaeun Kim of Stanford Canary Center for Cancer Early Detection who presented on the MeVisLab software that can be used to improve the accuracy of cancer diagnosis. She also shared her journey from open source project contributor to working in a professional laboratory all while she’s still in highschool.

My favorite part of the conference was a workshop on building your own pokemon world on web-based virtual reality by Santosh Viswanatham. As a long-time pokemon fan and recent VR enthusiast, I was amazed to see how accesible developing for VR had become.

380 applicants, Open Source, and YOU

Posted on by Laura

Last week, on International Women’s Day, we closed our applications for 2017. Since then, we’ve been absolutely speechless at the amount of interest we received from applicants worldwide. ONE HUNDRED AND NINETY APPLICATIONS! Yes, you’ve read that correctly — this year, 190 teams (meaning 380 applicants!) applied to our 3-month scholarship program from all over the world.

Exponential growth

This year is our fifth year running the program, and the numbers speak for themselves: since 2016, the number of applications has doubled, and it’s quadrupled since 2015. That’s what they call exponential growth!


OMG! (Image:

More support than ever before

With great interest comes greater responsibility (and more support): in the last couple of months, a small part of our team (mostly just two to three people) responded to a ton of support requests. As every year, most activity happened in the last few days before the deadline, and here are some numbers: 100 support requests on helpscout, 9 requests through Facebook, and way too many to count through twitter — mostly asking to be RT’ed or connected to coaches or the community. Our Google Groups community was also pretty active, with 103 topics posted from different people connecting to form teams and help out applicants. But the most activity happened in slack — our #application-support channel was already buzzing since January 4th (a month before we officially opened up applications), and it was the most active channel of communication to ask questions in: we received roughly 140 requests regarding the application process and our program.

Last minute and all over the world

And, because the best time to submit an application is right before the deadline, the last application to come in before the deadline was submitted at 17:59:45 UTC (that is, 15 seconds before our 18:00:00 UTC deadline). Hats off to that team living on the edge! As always, the applications are scattered across the world, on every continent, with some potential new countries such as Nepal or Albania joining the ranks of countries RGSoC applicants are located in. To get a better idea of all the possible locations of RGSoC teams, take a look at the map below!


Our 2017 applications (Image: Google Maps/Anika Lindtner)

We need you

We’ve just finished putting together our selection committee for the year and for the next few weeks we’ll be busy rating all the applications we received. Until then, we need your help! With the funds we’ve collected so far, we can “only” fund 6 teams to participate in RGSoC this year. Our goal for 2017 is to fund at least twice as many, so if you’re as passionate about our mission to bring more diversity into Open Source as we are: reach out to your community, to your friends, and to your company; ask them to donate, support, or sponsor our program, so that we can support at least 12 teams of amazing people!

Ruby Conf Australia

Posted on by Ramya

I had the privilege to attend RubyConf held in Melbourne last month as a part of the Rails Girls Summer of Code program. The Venue was set at the Melbourne Convention Hall and it was a great opportunity to meet so many interesting people in the Ruby community. Also a good learning experience.

Ruby Conf Australia

photo: RubyConf Australia

Following are some of my personal favorite talks:

Shana Moore: So you want to become a software engineer

This talk was about her career-changing journey to become a developer. It was very inspiring to learn about the approaches she followed in her coding challenges and her technical interviews. She emphasizes on how hard work and passion always pays off. And encouraging more people to get into technology. It was awesome meeting this amazing gal!

Tim Riley: Reinvesting in Ruby

It was interesting to learn about the challenges being faced by the ruby over other new functional languages like elixir and how can it be improved in the future — Dry ruby is the collection of next generation ruby libraries. How it helps you write clear, flexible, and more maintainable Ruby code. Each dry-Rb gem fulfills a common task, and together they make a powerful platform for any kind of Ruby application.

Marcos: Actors in Ruby!

Ruby has its own limitations when it comes to dealing with the concurrency over Erlang or Elixir. This talk was about how making it better using an Actor model. It was great.

Aja Hammerly: DataCenter Fires and other Minor Disasters

Aja Hammerly

photo: RubyConf Australia

She mentioned: “If nothing bad happens, you don’t have a good story to tell”. She shared her experience working with the Google data center. She talked about the mistakes she made, which helped her understand the importance of automation. How having a team with different background added to the learning and could save a day in many aspects. It was a impressive one.

Apart from all these amazing talks, I enjoyed delicious food, unlimited coffee which was served all day. It was another grateful event. Thanks to all the people who made it possible. And many thanks to the RGSOC committee for sponsoring the tickets.

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