Google Summer of Code

We want to participate in GSoC to give students the opportunity to work on a Linux distribution and learn about the complexity and inner workings what makes a portable distribution possible. Also, improvements have a direct positive impact on the users who are mostly students and teachers.

GSoC gives us the opportunity to work over a long period with the students and achieve goals that would take normally a lot longer or weren't even feasible. By working on Lernstick in GSoC the students gain experience to work and interact in an Open Source project, that benefits other students around the world.

Our mentors are long time contributors and worked with student projects before. Depending on the project the students are assigned to the mentor that worked with the part of Lernstick before, so that the mentor can assist the student. All mentors are committed to invest extra time into GSoC and the projects. Depending on our capacity we accept only so many students that we can ensure that at least one or more mentor per student can invest enough time mentoring a student.


The first task is to get the students familiar with the technologies on which the Lernstick system is based, which will be guided by a mentor, for example Debian Live.

This ensures that the students have enough knowledge about the Lernstick system to start working on their project. We go through the project and split the work in small tasks, so that the students have clear and easily reachable goals to work on. This makes it also easier to track the progress overall and to detect if current schedule is met. The progress is tracked through Github and in regular intervals the students are required to post a status update on the mailing list. A weekly meeting with the mentor is planned to discuss the current progress and any potential issues (before they become real issues). To detect issues early on we encourage students and mentors to communicate about their progress during the week over the mailing list or via email.

At the beginning of GSoC the development team welcomes the students and they introduce each other. We want to make the barrier to enter the community as low as possible and we think that if the students and developers get know each other it makes interactions a lot easier than just seeing an alias on the mailing list. We encourage the students to get involved in our mailing list and engage in discussions, even before GSoC. (Please note that most of the communication on our mailing list is in German, but don't hesitate to contact us in English and ask questions.) Many members of our community (on the mailing list) are our users. So the students have to introduce themself and their project to the community. This gets them and the community involved in the GSoC project and the students get direct feedback on their project by the current and potential users. By requiring posting status updates regularly we keep them involved in the community and also the community itself interested.

During the period of GSoC the students get familiar with our community (schools, teachers, students) and most parts of our infrastructure (Github, Debian Live, exam enviorment, mailing list) and get commit access to the project. We welcome and encourage our students to continue contributing to Lernstick also after GSoC.

Since 2015 we have a yearly Google-Lernstick-Hackathon with Google Serve in Zurich. Last year we had our first international hackathon with students from both Switzerland and Portugal. We would love to offer our GSoC students to come to this event (if it's financially viable).

No, this is our first application.


You’ll also be asked to complete a profile for your organization including the following:

University of Bern, Research Center for Digital Sustainability

The Research Center for Digital Sustainability is part of the Institute of Computer Science of the University of Bern. We deeply care about Free and Open Source Software.

The Research Center for Digital Sustainability is part of the Institute of Computer Science of the University of Bern. We deeply care about Free and Open Source Software.

The Research Center for Digital Sustainability is part of the Institute of Computer Science and currently employs about 20 staff members. The Research Center was founded in 2014 with the support of the association CH Open at the Institute of Information Systems of the University of Bern. It deals with the following key topics:

- Digital Sustainability - Open Source Software - Open Data and Linked Data - Smart City and Open Government - Blockchain and Smart Contracts - Public Procurement

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Linux, Debian, bootloaders, debian live, java, javafx, swing

Please send us your CV and your experiences with Linux, Bootloaders, Encryption, Debian, Debian Live, Shell Scripts, Java, JavaFX, Swing or other computer science topics to the following email address: