Google Summer of Code/Application 2023

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Register org[edit]

Years previously participated in GSoC[edit]

2021, 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009

Org Profile[edit]

Website URL[edit]



A free/open-source machine translation platform

Primary Open Source License[edit]

GNU General Public License version 3

Year organisation started[edit]

2006 (???)

Link to source code[edit]

Organisation categories[edit]

  • Science and medicine (healthcare, biotech, life sciences, academic research, etc.)
  • Other

Organisation technologies[edit]

C++, python, bash, XML, javascript

Organisation topics[edit]

machine translation, natural language processing, less-resourced languages, language technology

Organisation description[edit]

Apertium is a free/open-source machine translation platform, and the organisation focuses on primarily symbolic language technology for less-resourced languages.

Contributor guidance[edit]

Communication Methods[edit]

Organisation questionnaire[edit]

Why does your org want to participate in Google Summer of Code?[edit]

Apertium has been part of GSoC for over a decade and it has been a great experience. Apertium loves GSoC: it supports free/open-source (FOS) software as much as we do! Apertium needs GSoC: it offers an incredible opportunity (and resources!) allowing us to spread the word about our project, to attract new developers and consolidate the contribution of existing developers through mentoring, and to improve the platform in many ways: improving the engine, generating new tools and user interfaces, making Apertium available to other applications, improving the quality of the languages currently supported, adding new languages to it. Apertium loves less-resourced languages and GSoC gives an opportunity for developers speaking them to generate FOS language technologies for them. Apertium will gain: more developers getting to know FOS software and the ethos that comes with it, contributing to it, and especially contributors who are passionate about languages and computers.

What would your org consider to be a successful GSoC program?[edit]

A successful GSoC would see any combination of newly released language pairs, the addition of new technologies to the Apertium framework, the addition of features to our web infrastructure, and a fresh round of developers becoming excited by Apertium. We would especially be happy to see a successful project form the basis of a published academic paper and to gain new long-term contributors.

How will you keep mentors engaged with their GSoC contributors?[edit]

We select our mentors from among very active developers, with long-term commitment to this 18-year-old project — they are people we know well and whom we have met face-to-face at conferences, workshops, or even in daily life; some of them teach and do research at universities or work at companies using Apertium. For this reason, it is quite unlikely for mentors to disappear, since most of them have been embedded in our community for years. However, there is always the possibility that some problem comes up, so we also assign back-up mentors to all contributors, in many cases more than one back-up. If a mentor cannot continue for whatever reason, one of the backup co-mentors will take over, and one of the organisation administrators (themselves experienced GSoC mentors) will take on the role of second backup mentor.

How will you keep your GSoC contributors on schedule to complete their projects?[edit]

Apertium only accepts applications with a well-defined weekly schedule, clear milestones and deliverables, and, if possible, a section on risk management (risks, their probability, their severity, & mitigating actions). Applications should also plan for holidays, exams, and other absences. Contributors will be encouraged to let us know if they need to reschedule or take a break if needed. Contributors may also need consultation when they are stuck, or personal matters interfere with their work: we will, as we have in the past, try our best to reach out to them, be open and friendly, and provide as much support as we can to help them out. We've been in situations like this too! Detailed scheduling will avoid both mentors and contributors wasting time. If a mentor reports the unscheduled disappearance of a contributors (unexpected 72-hour silence), the contributors will be contacted by the administrators. If silence persists, their task will be frozen and we will report to Google, to proceed according to the rules of GSoC.

How will you get your GSoC contributors involved in your community during GSoC?[edit]

First, we encourage all prospective contributors to visit our IRC channel ( as often as possible, even before the start of the program, since that will help them find a suitable mentor and a useful project that they can work on. We advise them strongly to read our wiki pages and manuals, use our system, try to break it and fix it, and finally tell us about it. As a result, contributors get familiar with Apertium before the coding period starts, which increases their chances of ending up with a successful project. In addition, we define coding challenges for each of the proposed projects, which serve both as an entry task, and as a means for getting our contributors familiar with Apertium and involved in our community in the early stages of the program. Finally, during the coding stage, we are available to talk to our contributors on a daily basis and give them suggestions and advice when they get stuck.

Anything else we should know? (optional)[edit]

Is your organization part of any government?[edit]


Program Application[edit]

Ideas list[edit]


(How many Mentors does your Organization have available to participate in this program?)

  • Daniel
  • Jonathan

(add your names here!)

Program Retention Survey[edit]

(We're looking for more details on how many of your students/GSoC contributors from the above program are still active in your community today.)

  • Number of accepted students/contributors: 10
  • Number of those participants that are still active today: 3