We've just announced the list of accepted mentoring organizations for Google Summer of CodeTM 2009. After reviewing nearly 400 applications, we finally narrowed our selection to 150 Free and Open Source projects. The accepted projects are now busy adding details about their participation in GSoC to the program website, but you can already take a look at the list of accepted projects and their Ideas lists.

As we do every year, we're trying new things to improve the program. This year, we're accepting fewer mentoring organizations with the goal of creating larger student peer groups within each project. We've heard feedback from several organizations that having more students helped their mentees develop a greater sense of engagement with the community through their engagement with one another. Community engagement has long been cited as a critical success factor for Google Summer of Code, and we're confident that creating these larger peer groups will help facilitate that.

We had to make some very tough decisions this year, as we simply aren't able to accept every great project that applied. We are also bidding fond farewell to some past participants in favor of bringing new projects into the program. We greatly appreciate everything they have contributed to the program in past years and hope they will remain actively involved in our community. We want to thank everyone for their applications and would encourage those who were not accepted to apply for future instances of the program.

What Happens Now?

No doubt many would-be Google Summer of Code students are wondering what their next steps should be. You'll have a few days to learn about each participating organization before student applications open on March 23, 2009. Use this time to meet your potential mentors and to discuss how you'd like to contribute to their organization and your ideas are for improving their code base. Keep on eye on the program mailing lists, as we'll post notes about additional resources for learning about our mentoring organizations.

Most organizations have provided individual points of contact for each project suggestion, and you can always propose ideas and look for guidance on project mailing lists or forums, as well as on IRC. You can also look for your potential mentors in the program IRC channel, #gsoc on Freenode.

Remember, some of our most successful student projects come from ideas suggested by the students themselves, so take advantage of this time to explore what areas of development most excite you. You can then find people to help you brainstorm about your initial thoughts and further refine them. Don't be nervous about how your ideas will be received; take some time to think through what you'd like to accomplish, propose a plan of action, then work with your potential mentors to iterate, iterate, iterate.

Congratulations to all of our future mentors! We look forward to working with all of you this year, and to working with many of you once again.