The other big stipulation, which isn’t perhaps stated in an obvious way by Google, is that you should give your mentee realistic, substantive tasks to accomplish. The point of this program is to develop developers, not to give you someone who is paid by Google to be your flunky.
Many — possibly most — Summer of Code students work remotely. This is kind of an “up to you” thing; when it comes time to pick your student applicant(s), you may decide to go for local people. It’s also possible that there won’t be anyone near you that you feel is qualified to work with you. Or that there is someone you feel will be a perfect fit, but is on another continent.
The young people I’ve met who were Summer of Code student participants were all bright and knowledgeable. So are the Summer of Code mentors I know. I obviously have not met all 5,500 student participants and all 3000+ mentors who have been involved with the program since it started in 2005, but my sample size — over 100 — is statistically viable.
Note, too, that if you are pleased with your Summer of Code student, and you have a junior-level opening (or any opening, really) that student might be able to fill, you might be wise to extend a job offer to that student. He or she is prescreened — by you — and obviously knows at least a little about the work you need done and how to work smoothly with people you already have on staff.
And if you are a student, you need to look at the Summer of Code, too. But you have a little time to think about it. According to the 2012 timeline, you can’t even apply until March 26. We’ll see if we can’t grab an interview with someone from Google by then, so that you can get a little inside dope on what they’re looking for.]]>
It has a bunch of RAM, a fast CPU, Windows Home Premium 64 bit (which, take it from me, gives you LOTS more performance than the 32 bit version), a smallish HD (320 GB) you’ll probably want to augment with a plugin USB one before long, a nice big 15.6″ screen and — boo hoo hoo — a still/video camera that only has 0.3 MP resolution.
Weren’t Netbooks costing this much last year or the year before? Without cameras?
If you want a Lenovo because of the (formerly IBM) ThinkPad brand’s well-deserved reputation for ruggedness and reliability, CompUSA will sell you a nice ThinkPad for $499.
It hasn’t been many years since the only way anyone I knew got a ThinkPad was if their employer bought it for them, because ThinkPads with decent-sized screens (this one has a 15.6″ screen, same as the Dell) used to start at $1500 or so. And the new one has a spill-resistant keyboard, too, a feature all laptops should have (but none of mine ever have).
Anyway, this is a fine, corporate-grade laptop, complete with Windows Pro 64 bit so you… you know… know it’s professional grade.
So you know: both this ThinkPad and the Dell Inspiron are fully compatible with most popular Linux distributions, which to some of us is more important than which Windows version comes preloaded on the thing.
If, for some reason you hate keyboards and would rather have fingerprints all over your (touch)screen, CompUSA will sell you a 10.1″ Samsung tablet for $499, which is the same price as their much-higher-spec ThinkPad with a keyboard, and a bunch more than NewEgg will charge you for a Dell Inspiron that also comes with a keyboard and — like the ThinkPad — a way bigger screen than the Samsung tablet.
Re tablets: News Flash: You Don’t Need a Tablet is the title of an article by the ever-bearded Avram Pilch. He’s right. You don’t. And you don’t need anything at rent-to-own prices, which is another hobby horse he’s riding in that article.
Back-to-school software bagains, too
If you use nothing but FOSS, this doesn’t apply to you, but it seems that at least some software vendors are now dishing out deals in July and August. MyEclipse has a bunch of discounts on their Java/Eclipse IDEs, which are already lots cheaper than equivalent Rational software.
Other software vendors surely have deals right now that are this good or better.
And I’m sure I don’t need to remind you that if you take even one class at a local junior college, you can get all kinds of student discounts on software. Or if you’re married (as I am) to a student, you can have your spouse buy student-discounted software for you.
But whatever you buy in the way of hardware or software, and no matter where you buy it, late summer seems to have become a third “savings season,” right up there with Christmas and tax refund time.
One last note: the deals shown in this article are examples only, not necessarily the lowest prices around. Before you buy anything, you owe it to yourself to shop around like mad, a task modern search engines make a lot easier (and cooler, in the heat of summer) than old-fashioned “drive from store to store” shopping.]]>
CollegeBoard.com’s Resume Writing 101
As you might expect, a resume-writing guide on a site called CollegBoard.com is going to be of most help to high school and college students looking for a first job or an internship. If that’s you, read this page. If not, you still might want to read it. There is no such thing as too much knowledge when it comes to writing resumes — or just about anything else.
How to Write a Masterpiece of a Resume
at RockportInstitute.com, is an excellent excerpt from their popular book, THE PATHFINDER: How To Choose or Change Your Career for a Lifetime of Satisfaction and Success. Great info here. And if you’re ready to choose or change your career, you might even want to buy their book.
Queen Associates has a Technical Resume Writing Tips
page primarily for job applicants in the “Queen City,” AKA Charlotte, N. Carolina. But the advice on this page applies to anyone, anywhere, so don’t pass this excellent guide by just because you live in S. Carolina. Or N. Dakota. Or (fill in here).
USAJobs.gov is the U.S. government’s recruiting site, and has a
Resume and Application Tips page specifically for federal job applicants. Don’t rule out the idea of “Working for America” if you’re thinking about a job change, either. The U.S. government has more IT resources than just about anyone else, and has research agencies that have developed all kinds of cool stuff — including the Internet itself.
Online recruiting giant Monster.com
has a How to Write a Resume page that leads you to seven sub-pages about different parts of your resume, from How to Write an Effective Resume Title to Round Out Your Resume with Additional Information. And, of course, a link to Monster’s online resume builder.
So there you have it: six resume-writing help pages I believe are among the most useful ones out there. There are hundreds (possibly thousands) more, but these are some of the ones I believe are most useful for IT people who want to switch careers or get started in the job market right out of high school or college.]]>