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GSoC 2017 ends – Outreachy winter round begins

Erlend Sogge Heggen September 14, 2017

Since May this year we’ve been working with a handful of incredibly talented students. Google Summer of Code 2017 has now concluded, and we have some kick-ass new features to show for it. If you’re interested in a similar type of program, you should read about Outreachy further below, which is an internship for people from groups traditionally underrepresented in tech. As for Rails Girls, that is still ongoing; expect an update some time in October.

Four students entered – Four students emerged victorious

Out of the 4 students we worked with this year, all of them passed with flying colors. Not only that, but the projects they worked on were far from trivial.

David Taylor – Discourse Chat Integration

Bianca Nenciu – UX improvements; PMs to email addresses; Canned Replies v2

Jakub Macina – Search filters for tags, images & filetypes; Infinite scrolling in search results

Erick Guan – Login by email link; UTF-8 improvements; Improved Chinese-Japanese-Korean search

A big warm thanks to our wonderful students! We’d be happy to keep working with all of you, so hopefully we’ll still see you on Meta from time to time.

Outreachy – Winter Round

We planned to participate in Outreachy this summer, but with 4 GSoC slots and a Rails Girls project, our mentors were at capacity. We opted to defer our Outreachy participation to this winter.

However, we did in fact get to work with an Outreachy applicant this summer as well! Bianca originally found out about us through Outreachy, but when we realised we didn’t have the mentors available for it we recommended that she apply for GSoC instead, and the rest is history (of kickassery).

Would you like to participate in Outreachy this winter?

Learn all about it here: https://github.com/discourse/discourse/wiki/Outreachy

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Boost your Patreon campaign with Discourse

Erlend Sogge Heggen June 22, 2017

Interest-based forums are perhaps the ultimate community experience. These oases on the internet are where you realise that geeking out big-time on knitting, robotics, fantasy football or what-have-you is totally a thing, and there’s no shortage of likeminded enthusiasts out there ready to geek out with you. Unfortunately these communities are also the most difficult to support, because general interests are hard to monetise.

That’s where companies like Patreon come in with crowdfunding for creators. Content creators and community builders are often the one and the same, which is why we’ve made it easy to use Patreon and Discourse together.

A few weeks ago we quietly rolled out our Patreon integration to all of our hosted customers. Along with the self-hosted early adopters (thanks so much!) there are plenty of live examples to look at already:

Here’s how it works

Let’s assume you already have a profile on Patreon and the integration with Discourse has been set up. This is what the integration does for you:

1. A user on your forum decides to give a monthly donation to your project through Patreon

2. Discourse detects that this user (email) is a Patron and adds the user to the patrons group

This group membership comes with a lot of added “cosmetics”, which admins can customise to fit their brand. Patrons can get a custom Title, Avatar flair and Badge.

With the right incentives in place you can take this one step further and give patrons access to a private category or even an exclusive forum for paying members only, like the Video Creators community is doing:

3. Increase patronage through visibility

While that extra flair is a fun and rewarding way to recognise your patrons, it also doubles as advertisement for your Patreon campaign.

Donations is a numbers game, and you want to remind your users as often as possible that their support is needed, without becoming an annoyance. The patron flair accomplishes that by being ever-present in daily discussions, serving as an unobtrusive but daily reminder that donations are a thing. It’s a positive feedback loop.

Ready to start collecting money? Follow our set-up guide and you’re all set. Self-hosted users must install the plugin first. If you’re using this integration on a live site, we’d love to hear from you!

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Summer of Code 2017

Erlend Sogge Heggen February 28, 2017

This summer, Discourse will be participating in three different “summer of code” projects!

Google Summer of Code 2017

First of all, we’re happy to announce that we’ve been accepted into Google Summer of Code for the 2nd time in a row.

Rails Girls Summer of Code 2017

As per usual (this is our 4th go) we’ll also be participating in RGSoC. That process is run entirely on RGSoC’s end, so please see their website for more information.

Outreachy 2017 (May)

We’re very excited to be participating in Outreachy for the first time this year.

Outreachy helps people from groups underrepresented in free and open source software get involved. We provide a supportive community for beginning to contribute any time throughout the year and offer focused internship opportunities twice a year with a number of free software organizations.

Currently, internships are open internationally to women (cis and trans), trans men, and genderqueer people. Additionally, they are open to residents and nationals of the United States of any gender who are Black/African American, Hispanic/Latin@, American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, or Pacific Islander. We are planning to expand the program to more participants from underrepresented backgrounds in the future.

Outreachy applicants are encouraged to apply for both GSoC as well as Outreachy. More information here: https://github.com/discourse/discourse/wiki/Outreachy

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