G. Donald Bain
Born in Israel, raised in Switzerland and currently living in Canada, Yuval's life has been an exciting journey through multiple cultures. Schooled in Italian in the sunny part of Switzerland, he moved to Zurich to attend university in German and followed his girlfriend (turned wife) to Paris. Fluent in Italian, German, French, English and Hebrew, he can get along in a few more languages too.
Like his life path, his career has been a stimulating passage through various disciplines. Educated as an MBA, trained as a CFA he never really fitted into any one mold. Even before university he engaged in commercial computer programming at the age of 14. While working for world class banks, he also had a stint as a dive-master in the Caribbean. Photography has always been a passion.
Twenty percent schooled and eighty percent self taught, Yuval constantly seeks to apply his brain to new knowledge. The request of a Dutch customer for a virtual tour of his hotel got him started on panoramas and virtual reality. That was in late 2003, when Yuval was in between moving from Paris to Québec.
Passion turned into fervor. He embarked on a path of discovery and learning, honed his skills and participated as a VR artist in different forums.
- In December 2004 he participated for the first time in the World Wide Panorama and has not missed one edition (four times a year) since. 
- In May 2005 his submission was accepted into the exclusive collection of Panoramas of World War II Landmarks. 
- In August 2006 his work was published by the prestigious industry magazine VRmag.
Yuval is involved in VR not only artistically, but also technically. His Brocap tool was one of the first to detect available VR technology in the browser and display accordingly. In 2006 he set up a business that offers standardized real estate tours. In that context, his business was chosen by Remax-Québec to photograph the Maison Opération Enfant Soleil 2006 - the first prize of a yearly lottery benefiting children in hospitals.
Daniel M. German
Why are we applying for participation
What do we hope to gain by participating
Did your organization participate in GSoC 2005 or 2006
We did not participate in GSoC in the past and we never applied before.
Who is the administrator
to be defined.
What license does your project use
What is the URL for your ideas page
What is the main development mailing list for your organization
What is the main IRC channel for your organization
do we have any?
Does your organization have an application template you would like to see students use? If so, please provide it now
Who will be your backup organization administrator? Please include Google Account information
to be defined.
Who will your mentors be? Please include Google Account Information
- Pablo d'Angelo
- Daniel M. German
- Herbert Bay
- any other "senior" developer or academic with mentoring experience around?
What criteria did you use to select these individuals as mentors? Please be as specific as possible
- familiarity and experience with the production process of stitched panoramas
- knowledge of the universe of code applied to stitched panoramas
- experience in mentoring junior coders, possibly from an academic environment
- in depth knowledge of user requirements
What is your plan for dealing with disappearing students
First we try to minimize the risk of disappearing students.
At the recruiting stage we screen the candidates carefully. We can draw on a fairly large pool of students that are users of the panotools and are likely to find candidates from within the ranks of more than 2000 very active users.
We align their interest with ours - for example last year the community arranged for a fund raiser that resulted in the donation of a fish-eye lens to the maintainer of a core software component. This aligned his interests with the interests of the community and helped insure continued support for this kind of lens that is the most widely used in our community. With the help of our steering committee we are likely to initiate similar activities to bind the student to the community.
Depending on the context it might also be possible to structure the work as academic credits to further incentivation.
In the unlikely event that the student disappears, we feel we have a responsibility toward our steering committee, our community, our sponsors. We intend to complete the projects and will do so by looking for a skilled replacement to continue the work. It might take longer than expected, but we will get there. The advancement of hugin and the set of tools around it is driven by user's needs and will relentlessly move forward, even if at a slower pace.
What is your plan for dealing with disappearing mentors
The selected mentors are well known and connected in the community. We estimate the risk of a disappearing mentor to be very low. To minimize the impact of such an unlikely event we strive to have two mentors per project that can replace each other seamlessly. In the event that one of the two mentors disappears, recruiting efforts for a backup mentor will start immediately. Our steering committee is well connected and will support the organizer in the efforts to recruit replacement mentors. Our community has already experienced the disappearing of key figures on important projects and survived the test when Helmut Dersch, founding father of the panotools library that is at the core of our community, disappeared.
What steps will you take to encourage students to interact with your project's community before, during and after the program
First of all, we hope to recruit a student from the community. This is a growing and vibrant community. We will make sure that the student has the specialized gear to shoot panoramas and we will make sure they get the bug that all of us have. It's passionating photography. We have already organized a fund raiser to donate a fish-eye lens to one of the project maintainers and we can do this again and again.
What will you do to ensure that your accepted students stick with the project after GSoC concludes?
We will make sure he or she enjoys the practical aspects of panorama photography. Part of the assignement will be of practical nature: *use* the software to learn it, not just *code*.