Santa Clara, CA – November 28, 2015: Power 106FM, Jamaica’s first 24/7 all-talk radio station featured Palisadoes’ Calico project on the Jamaican Diaspora Live Online show with host Dr. K’adamawe K’nife.
“Palisadoes is a diaspora software initiative aimed at creating a close relationship with Jamaican partners including business, academia and students,” mentioned Kimone Gooden, member of the Jamaican Diaspora Technology Task Force, “A key goal is to have student involvement, where they can gain the practical experience and skills that are in international demand, by proving their capabilities with visible contributions on the Internet.”
Calico is Palisadoes’ starter project where students will be paid a stipend over the summer to create open source software under the guidance of personal mentors. Stipends are incrementally paid on achieving milestones, with each of the 20 expected participating students earning up to US$1,500 over the summer. Palisadoes is working with both local and diaspora sponsors, individuals and companies to achieve this goal.
“Open source software is developed by volunteers. It’s free to download, free to view, free to analyze and change. It’s not new, the Chrome web browser and Android mobile phones use the open source model” stated Peter Harrison, another Task Force member, “Google, Facebook and others assign engineers to contribute to these projects and often financially sponsor them too. Most importantly, Jamaica has open source projects too”
The Calico project’s operating committee regularly meets with inputs from UWI and Utech representatives, members of Jamaica’s open source community, and the Diaspora Task Force. A software engineering advisory team including Jamaicans at Google and LinkedIn provide additional guidance.
Shane Richards, President of the UWI Computing Society was also interviewed. “It is a significant step for students, not just at the University level, but high schools too. There has a great deal of support from the UWI faculty too, and there are plans to see how the curriculum could include participation in Calico” he stated.
Calico will focus on Jamaican open source projects. Student registration for Calico opens in early 2016.
About the Palisadoes Initiative
The Palisadoes initiative aims to provide new avenues to promote Jamaica’s technology businesses and talent using a series of programs aimed at creating increased awareness of the island’s abilities in the global marketplace.