Earlier this year, we announced our ten grand prize winners for GHOP, the Google Highly Open Participation Contest™ — our first initiative to get pre-university students involved in open source software development. The contest brought together more than 350 students from around the world to help ten Open Source projects make improvements to their code base, marketing materials, documentation and user experience research. Last week, all of the winners and their families visited Silicon Valley, and we were pleased to welcome them from as far afield as Poland, Russia, Thailand, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the East Coast of the United States, not to mention our local winner.

We kicked off the festivities with a day of rides, fun and frozen lemonade at Great America. We then reassembled on Friday at Google's Mountain View, California, USA headquarters for an awards ceremony with Alan Eustace, our Senior Vice President of Engineering. Following lunch, all of our winners were treated to talks on Google technology, including Android, Google App Engine, Google infrastructure and software testing from engineers including Jeff Dean, Google Fellow, and Guido van Rossum, the creator of the Python programming language.

our GHOP grand prize winners and their mentors


You might also be interested in the video of the Grand Prize Winner Awards Ceremony, which includes some interviews with our winners and their mentors.

Many congratulations to Daniel Abramov, Woorapat Boonyarittipong, Peter Cawley, Spencer Davis, Tomasz Dobrzyński, Patrick Hulin, Federico Lorenzi, Jarosław Tworek, Wojciech Szkutnik and Jonathan Wilde for their many accomplishments in the GHOP contest!

For those of you wondering when we'll be holding the next Highly Open Participation Contest, all we can say for now is stay tuned. The system to manage the contest is under active development and is completely Open Source, so if you're interested in helping make the next GHOP happen visit the Melange project page and jump on into the code!