Phyloinformatics Summer of Code 2008

Below is an email that I received from NESCent:

Phyloinformatics Summer of Code 2008

Please disseminate this announcement widely to appropriate students at your institution

The National Evolutionary Synthesis Center (NESCent) is participating in 2008 for the second year as a mentoring organization in the Google Summer of Code. Through this program, Google provides undergraduate, masters, and PhD students with a unique opportunity to obtain hands-on experience writing and extending open-source software under the mentorship of experienced developers from around the world.

Our goal in participating is to train future researchers and developers to not only have awareness and understanding of the value of open-source and collaboratively developed software, but also to gain the programming and remote collaboration skills needed to successfully contribute to such projects. Students will receive a stipend from Google, and may work from their home, or home institution, for the duration of the 3 month program. Students will each have one or more dedicated mentors with expertise in phylogenetic methods and open-source software development.

NESCent is particularly targeting students interested in both evolutionary biology and software development. Project ideas (see URL below) range from visualizing phylogenetic data in R, to development of a Mesquite module, web-services for phylogenetic data providers or geophylogeny mashups, implementing phyloXML support, navigating databases of networks, topology queries for PhyloCode registries, to phylogenetic tree mining in a MapReduce framework, and more.

The project ideas are flexible and many can be adjusted in scope to match the skills of the student. If the program sounds interesting to you but you are unsure whether you have the necessary skills, please email the mentors at the address below. We will work with you to find a project that fits your interests and skills.


Email any questions, including self-proposed project ideas, to

To Apply

Apply on-line at the Google Summer of Code website, where you will also find GSoC program rules and eligibility requirements. The 1-week application period for students opens on Monday March 24th and runs through Monday, March 31st, 2008.

Hilmar Lapp and Todd Vision US National Evolutionary Synthesis Center