Welcome

Google Summer of Code 2017

How to apply

For general information, please visit our community server Google Summer of Code 2017 discussion group: https://open.rocket.chat/channel/gsoc17

Final proposal submission is now officially closed.

Our sincere thanks goes to every student who had worked hard in creating one of the SIXTY EIGHT proposals we have received across all projects. We are totally surprised and flattered as a first year GSoC participating organization.

The official list of accepted students and projects is now available directly from Google:

https://summerofcode.withgoogle.com/organizations/6368590472151040/

Out of the SIXTY EIGHT proposals we received, we have painstakingly selected a short list of NINE outstanding ones. We have personally met (video conferenced) with every one of the students behind these NINE proposals during the last few weeks.

Google has incredibly sponsored FOUR out of the NINE students (first year organization typically gets 1 or 2 students/projects only). Thank you, Google GSoC 2017 !

The FOUR Google sponsored students and projects for GSoC 2017 are:

Student Project Mentor(s)
Naman Gupta To Create a PWA Client Karl Prieb, Guilherme Gazzo
Lucas Woo Rocket.Chat iOS SDK Rafael Kellermann Streit, Rodrigo Nascimento
Pradeep Kumar Integrated Personal Email Gateway Rodrigo Nascimento, Diego Sampaio
Mrinal Dhar E2E encryption with Signal protocol Marcelo Schmidt, Marius

Team bonding and familiarization activities have started between mentors and the selected students.

We have contacted the FIVE other students to discuss potential Rocket.Chat sponsorships. One student happily reported that he has already been selected by another GSoC 2017 mentoring organization. Another did not reply to any of our offers and queries before the deadline. THREE other students have accepted Rocket.Chat sponsorship and are currently working diligently with their mentors.

The THREE Rocket.Chat sponsored students and projects for 2017 are:

Student Project Mentor(s)
Karan Batra Automatic Channels Mitar, Rodrigo Nascimento
Sachin Shinde Rocket.Chat Android SDK Rafael Kellermann Streit
Manish Kakoti Federation Server Gabriel Engel, Sing Li, Matthew Hodgson

Please keep monitoring this page for the latest Rocket.Chat GSoC 2017 updates.

Coding has started

June is finally upon us. All of our GSoC students who have had prior apprenticeship or other engagements are now free of their obligations, and have started to code for Rocket.Chat full time. The commmunity bonding period has come and gone smoothly, with the mingling between our students and the core team on the 24 x 7 community chat server, on GitHub, via email, or at our weekly scheduled team video-conference. Many of our students have also made friends with our extended community - helping them and exchanging ideas for their projects.

In fact, due to their overwhelming enthusiasm, most of our GSoC students have started coding even before the beginning of June. Here are some of the most recent contributions (of many!) to Rocket.Chat by our new team of GSoC recruits:

Manish Kakoti: https://github.com/RocketChat/Rocket.Chat.Federation/pull/5

Karan Batra: https://github.com/RocketChat/Rocket.Chat/pull/7137

Lucas Woo: https://github.com/RocketChat/Rocket.Chat.iOS/pull/438

Naman Gupta: https://github.com/RocketChat/Rocket.Chat.PWA/pull/12

Pradeep Kumar: https://github.com/RocketChat/Rocket.Chat/pull/7088

Congratulations to the new team members, and keep up the great work! We are all looking forward to the first evaluation milestone at the end of June.

Creating open source citizens

July is in full swing. First evaluation has completed and we’re working towards our end-of-July milestone.

We are happy to report that all seven of our students have passed their first evaluation. Most are making very good pace on their projects, with some close to completion and in planning phase for extensions. We are also keeping a keen eye out on potential candidate(s) for full-time hire at end of their term.

The following are the Rocket.Chat projects that our new team members are working on. Contribution and participation are welcomed immediately from the greater Rocket.Chat community:

After the evaulation, we have made sure that they all have received the first stipend payment - especially the students under Rocket.Chat’s sponsorship.

Working with a publicity company, we have been creating open source “hero stories” profiling every one of our new summer-term team members. Many of them have already been featured on our Blog:

In July, along with continued technical progress, we are focusing to help the student in development of their open source citizenship skills - something hopefully useful beyond their GSoC terms with us.

This will include activities in:

  • promoting their open source project
  • build and nurture a community around their project
  • interaction with internal and external open source team members

Over the next two months, guided by their mentor(s) - each student will be giving a presentation on their project to the larger Rocket.Chat team.

We continue to be extremely optimistic going into the critical mid-term evaluation in late July.

Ideas

Federation of Rocket.Chat Servers

  • Mentors: Matthew Hodgson (@arathorn) Rodrigo Nascimento (@rodrigo.nascimento)
  • Description: Tens of thousands of Rocket.Chat servers are running at this very minute on the Internet. There is currently no way for users/bots/services of one instance to address or communicate with those from another. This project’s mission is to make it possible. You will be working and exchanging ideas with the very best in the field - experts from Matrix.org and Rocket.Chat.
  • Desirable Skills: Familiarity with JavaScript development. Demonstrated interest and/or passion on networking and federation protocols research and evolution.
  • Goal/Deliverable: The foundation for all Rocket.Chat users/bots/services to optionally communicate with one another, across all connected instances.

Create a Progressive Web App client

  • Mentors: Karl Prieb (@karl.prieb)
  • Description: Create a new PWA client for Rocket.Chat using Angular framework, WebSocket and mobile-first approach.
  • Desirable Skills: Some Javascript coding skills would be required to complete this task.
  • Goal/Deliverable: A PWA client with basic chat functionality like channels and direct messages list, users status, channel messages, user preferences, etc.

Improved End-to-End Encryption Implemenation (currently feature-named OTR)

  • Mentors: Marcelo Schmidt (@marcelo.schmidt) Mitar (@mitar)
  • Description: Taking and improving our end-to-end encryption implementation. Perhaps replace with more modern protocols, such as Signal.
  • Desirable Skills: Some Javascript coding skills and familiarity with cryptography.
  • Goal/Deliverable: The ability to have end-to-end encrypted conversations between users. There are various features possible: forward secrecy, online and offline use (do users have to be online at the same time for encryption to be possible), do we store messages on the server, pair or group conversations, encrypted file transfer, etc.

File uploads and exchanges with OwnCloud

  • Mentors: Diego Sampaio (@diego.sampaio) Thomas Müller (@thomas.muller) deepdiver1975@gmail.com
  • Description: When you upload a file today in Rocket.Chat, your server may be configured to store it on AWS S3, Google’s object storage, MongoDB’s GridFS, or local filesystem. This project adds OwnCloud as an official target destination. In addition, since every user of Rocket.Chat may have her/his own OwnCloud server - some way to support file exchanges with those servers will also be interesting. You will be working with top engineers who actually designed and coded these features, from OwnCloud and Rocket.Chat, on this project.
  • Desirable Skills: Familiarity with PHP and JavaScript development. Familiarity with (and already a user of) Rocket.Chat and OwnCloud definitely a plus.
  • Goal/Deliverable: Support integrations between OwnCloud and Rocket.Chat as if it was designed-in since the very first day.

Use of Chromecast as Presentation Room

  • Mentors: Bradley Hilton (@graywolf336)
  • Description: Use Chromecast as presentation output which shows a chat room and will join any Jitsi / WebRTC meetings that are started in it, this way meetings can be started inside Rocket.Chat and the Chromecast can be on a TV/Monitor inside a conference room.
  • Desirable Skills: Some Javascript coding skills will be required to complete this task. Students with WebRTC knowledge and/or who have already produced Chromecast apps are on a good start. A Chromecast is required for this task.
  • Goal/Deliverable: Being able to pair a room with Chromecast, displaying it’s messages. Chromecast app needs to be able to automatically join a Jitsi/WebRTC video call.

Integrated Personal Email Gateway

  • Mentors: Rodrigo Nascimento (@rodrigo.nascimento)
  • Description: Add feature to allow automated reply when offline, and forwarding of incoming messages via email.
  • Desirable Skills: Some Javascript coding skills will be required to complete this task. An understanding of industry standard SMTP and POP prototcols, and configuration of standard email servers will be required.
  • Goal/Deliverable: Ability for each user to set an away message, and receive any offline messages - in batches per interval, via through email account.

Create an SDK for Mobile Apps to include a chat inside other apps

  • Mentors: Rafeal Kellermann (@rafaelks)
  • Description: Create an SDK (for iOS and/or Android) to embed in any app that wants to have a chat inside it. It could be useful for support and also for chat in enterprise apps. One example is an app that’s used by all sellers from a company to be able to communicate with each other using Rocket.Chat. Another example is something very similar to Intercom (https://www.intercom.com/mobile)
  • Desirable Skills: Students will be required to code in either Java for Android SDK or Swift for the iOS SDK. Students will also need to understand how Rocket.Chat communicates over websockets.
  • Goal/Deliverable: To have an SDK that allows App Developers to embed a chat system inside their own apps using Rocket.Chat servers to deliver messages.

Calendar Integration for Meeting Scheduling

  • Mentors: Bradley Hilton (@graywolf336)
  • Description: taking and embedding a calendar inside rocket.chat, being standalone yet integrating with all the calendars out there so people can schedule meetings and be reminded of upcoming meetings that are inside rocket.chat
  • Desirable Skills: Some javascript coding skills
  • Goal/Deliverable: The ability to schedule a meeting in Rocket.Chat

Rocket.Chat on Mesh Network

  • Mentors: Mitar (@mitar) Gabriel Engel (@gabriel.engel)
  • Description: Modify the Rocket.Chat to work on mesh networks. There are two basic types of mesh networks which would be interesting to cover:
    • A network of mostly always online off-the-shelf WiFi equipment which forms a network where all network nodes can connect directly to each other (no NAT). Here it would be interesting to port Rocket.Chat so that it could run served as a static resource from these limited devices (which are often not powerful enought to run MongoDB and node.js, which Rocket.Chat otherwise uses for server-side part). Rocket.Chat should be bundled into a static resource, served over HTTP to clients, which could then use something like WebRTC to connect to each other and communicate with each other. A very thin server-side program might be needed as well, to help with WebRTC connections for example, or discovery of other nodes to connect to. A distributed database like Scuttlebot could be used as well.
    • A delay tolerant mesh network where devices do not have regular connectivity between each other, and are often even moving around. Such networks often do not even use TCP/IP. On the other hand, devices often have much more storage space and power, when they are available. The idea is to change Rocket.Chat so that it can operate in such environment as well.
  • Desirable Skills: Javascript, WebRTC, networking, OpenWrt, and programming for embeded devices (C, Lua, bash)
  • Goal/Deliverable: An OpenWrt package providing a modified Rocket.Chat to work in a mesh network.

Automatic Channels

  • Mentors: Marcelo Schmidt (@marcelo.schmidt) Mitar (@mitar)
  • Description: Add a feature of creation of automatic channels to Rocket.Chat and automatic joining of users to those channels. The idea is to extend Rocket.Chat with a plugin system where plugins could classify users into channels. Then such channel would be automatically created, if it does not yet exist, and user added to it. This should also work reactivelly so that plugin can remove the user from a chnnel, and remove such channels. Use cases here are various. For example, a plugin could detect user’s language and automatically add them to a channel for that language. Or, plugin could resolve user’s IP into their country and add them to a channel for this country. If user changes the IP and moves to another country, they should be automatically moved to a new channel. In combination with mesh networking support, users could be automatically put into channels local to the node to whic they are connected.
  • Desirable Skills: Some javascript coding skills
  • Goal/Deliverable: Modification to Rocket.Chat with a plugin system for automatic channels and joining with two example plugins: based on browser specified language, and country basd on GeoIP of the user.

Enable multi-instance High Availabilty (HA) configuration with snaps

  • Mentors: Aaron Ogle (@geekgonecrazy)
  • Description: Modify the Rocket.Chat snap to enable mongodb replica’s and multi instance Rocket.Chat
  • Desirable Skills: Familiarity with linux, and bash scripting.
  • Goal/Deliverable: A snap that can be used in a multi-instance HA setup.