Possibility of having small FOSS projects in introductory CS courses

Sebastian Zartner sebastianzartner at gmail.com
Fri Aug 1 08:12:41 UTC 2014

I guess that these bugs fall into that category:



On 1 August 2014 09:12, Manish Goregaokar <manishsmail at gmail.com> wrote:

> So this semester some rather interesting things are planned for the CS101
> course taught by Professor DB Phatak
> <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deepak_B._Phatak> (a great supporter of
> FOSS) in my university.
> One thing that caught my eye was that there were discussions for allowing
> students to contribute to FOSS as their 30% credit group project. Usually
> people make terminal-tic-tac-toe or games like minesweeper if graphics was
> taught, but this seems like a novel idea. Contributing to FOSS isn't
> *hard*, just intimidating, and the intimidation can be bypassed if you
> have a framework of professors and TAs around you.
> As of now, nothing has been planned, but the idea is that students are
> allowed to form a larger group (perhaps with modular subgroups if the
> project is complex) and work on a reasonably sized C++ project in open
> source (the project can also be a set of smaller contributions). Obviously
> most "student projects" are unsuitable for this; those are usually
> semester-long projects for experienced students. Most "good first bug" are
> on the other end of the spectrum -- while they might take a week to solve,
> they're not really project material.
> Are there any such (preferably C++) projects/bugs that we have in Firefox
> that could conceivably be solved by first year students doing an
> introductory course? Many of these students have learned some C++ (or Java)
> in school, which might help.
> If this works here, we might be able to create a better framework for
> other univs to try the same ("good first student project"? :P ). I love the
> idea of getting people involved in FOSS early on in the learning process --
> at this stage students are not yet really that intimidated since everything
> else is just as new.
> Thoughts? Bugs?
> -Manish Goregaokar (Manishearth)
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