CERN Season of Docs 2020


Season of Docs is a program that brings technical writers and open source projects together for a few months to work on open source documentation.

Particle physics is an exciting field where large collaborations of scientists collect and analyze petabytes data from high-energy physics experiments, such as the Large Hadron Collider, hosted at the CERN laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland. Some of the questions that we collectively ask are:

To answer these questions, particle physicists build software to simulate and analyze what happens in particle physics detectors.

Since 2011, CERN has participated in other Google initiatives such as Google Summer of Code (GSoC), first as a small organization (CERN-SFT) and later as an umbrella organization (CERN-HSF) to involve the high-energy physics community. Given the good results in the past under the GSoC program, CERN-HSF is eager to participate in this year and future editions of Season of Docs.

Season of Docs 2020

In 2020 CERN-HSF participated as an umbrella organization, project proposals are listed below.

Blogs from participants

Technical writer blogs

For technical writers

For candidate technical writers interested in our project proposals, please take your time to first read them thoroughly and visit the links they advertise. In case the content attracts your interest and you have ideas on how you may contribute, contact by mail directly the mentors listed at the end of each proposal. Please introduce yourself and attach your curriculum, which must contain references to some of your notable technical writing contributions. Note that all our projects require some previous experience in this area.

For HSF projects and mentors

Detailed instructions for mentors and organizations on how to apply, including links to other relevant Season of Docs resources are available here. Please use the administrators contact at the bottom of this page (not the general to ask us any questions concerning your application.

Projects in 2020


Allpix Squared is a free and open-source simulation framework for silicon tracker and vertex detectors written in modern C++. The goal of the Allpix Squared framework is to provide a complete and easy-to-use package for simulating the performance of detectors from incident ionizing radiation until the digitization of hits in the detector chip.

List of proposals

A modular scientific software framework. It provides all the functionalities needed to deal with big data processing, statistical analysis, visualisation and storage. It is mainly written in C++ but integrated with other languages such as Python.

List of proposals

Rucio is a software framework that provides functionality to organize, manage, and access large volumes of scientific data using customisable policies. The data can be spread across globally distributed locations and across heterogeneous data centers, uniting different storage and network technologies as a single federated entity. Rucio offers advanced features such as distributed data recovery or adaptive replication, and is highly scalable, modular, and extensible. Rucio has been originally developed to meet the requirements of the high-energy physics experiment ATLAS, and is continuously extended to support LHC experiments and other diverse scientific communities.

List of proposals

Participating Organizations in 2020


At CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, physicists and engineers are probing the fundamental structure of the universe. They use the world’s largest and most complex scientific instruments to study the basic constituents of matter – the fundamental particles.

List of proposals

DESY is one of the world’s leading accelerator centres. Researchers use the large-scale facilities at DESY to explore the microcosm in all its variety – from the interactions of tiny elementary particles and the behaviour of new types of nanomaterials to biomolecular processes that are essential to life.

List of proposals


Full list of Proposal Ideas

Full list of Mentors

HSF Season of Docs Administrators: Andrei Gheata, Antoine Pérus and Xavier Valls.

Contact administrators / General e-mail for mentors