I was invited to visit Sastra university – Trichy for a workshop on Free Software. I joined with Aditya and Srishti at KPN office bangalore. We boarded an air-conditioned sleeper coach by 11.30 P.M and reached Trichy by 6 AM. The road was bit bumpy, i couldn’t sleep much. As expected Trichy was much warmer than Bangalore in the morning. Trichy main bus stand has couple of Kamaraj statues. Sristi was surprised to see the ‘Golden’ statues of kamaraj.
While we were discussing about kamaraj, our cab arrived. The Sastra university is 45 minutes drive from Trichy. It is located between Trichy and Tanjore. We were asked to stay at the Guest house.
By 10 A.M i started my session on Free Software at one of their ‘smart classrooms’. I explained students about free software and its importance. My second talk was on GNU/Linux Commands, the talk was based on Stanford universities open classroom session on PracticalUnix. Students tried various commands on their laptops as i explained them. Aditya introduced python and Srishti introduced QT to students on the first day.
We had a good dinner at ‘Canopy’ Sastra’s canteen which is being managed by students. We finished the dinner with a tasty creamy cold coffee sponsored by Srishti. I was very tired after travel; so i went to bed early.
After a good sleep, I started the second day by introducing Django to students. I explained Django by creating a small blogging application. Many students tried to follow my instructions and came up with the small blogging website (Yay!). Next I joined with Sristi and introduced git revision control system to students using Shakthi‘s ‘di-git-ally-managing-love-letters‘ presentation. The students loved it! Aditya did a workshop on puppet on the second day. We also met the I.T department professor and had a little talk. She presented us with a memento .
By 6.30 P.M we left the college by saying good bye. We had to board the bus at Tanjore. Tanjore is famous for its Brihadeeswarar Temple. It was built on 11th century. We visited the temple and spent some time there. After dinner , we boarded the bus back to Bangalore. Srishti took lot of pictures during the visit (will be uploaded soon)
My flight reached at Pune 15 minutes before the schedule. Vaidik and I planned over IRC to share the cab from airport to the hotel. His flight was 30 mins late. I was not able to reach his mobile phone even after his flight landed. We never seen each other before. Finally i noticed a guy with a ‘Drupal’ T-shirt, i decided to bite the bullet and asked him “Are you vaidik?” Fortunately the answer was a ‘Yes’. By the way vaidik helped us with the fudcon.in website.
While i was waiting for Vaidik to book a cab, I heard some one asking me “Are you going to FUDCon?” that was .Srishti Sethi Gcompris contributor and GSOC student . Apparently she too identified us using our “Geeky” T-Shirts. We three ended up sharing the cab.
Moral : Wear a geeky T-shirt when you are going to a Technical conference.
We all had breakfast at the hotel and hopped into a van to reach the FUDCon venue. We were welcomed by Amit, Shakthi, Rahul and others Day 1 of FUDCon started with jared’s talk. He only used pictures in his presentation and did all the talking. His talk was thought provoking. After the keynote address i went to speaker’s lounge to prepare for my afternoon workshop. I met Joerg there. I introduced myself as maintainer of sqlninja. Joerg gave me commit access to security spin’s repository. I promised to help him with the future security spin releases..
In the afternoon, I did a workshop on “Practical GNU/Linux” for the students of college of engineering Pune. The workshop was inspired by Stanford’s open classroom session named “practical unix” I managed to pull most of crowd from auditorium’s to my workshop (evil grin). The slides are available here
After attending Harish’s talk on community, I started my talk on Django. I explained folks on how to create web apps using Django using a simple blog application. The slides are available here. My talk was followed by rtnpro‘s “Testing Django apps” talk. He extended by blog application and added test cases to it. The code is available here . After the talk to our pleasant surprise some one from COEP approached us with half written Django app. We happily helped her fix the issue. In the afternoon i attened jsmith’s “publican” talk and Srishti’s “cute hacks using pygoocanvas”.
In the evening we left for FUDPub. FUDPub was awesome , everything happened on a roof top with DJ and dance.
Day 3: – Hackfest’s
Rahul was late to the venue on Day 3 (FUDPub?). I introduced askbot on behalf of Rahul to the people and invited them to join our hackfest. Most of them joined us were new to Django so we had to help them a bit. Then i started working on “Export questions and answers as pdf” feature of askbot. I ended up using “Reportlab” python library for pdf generation. A lot need to be done to complete this feature. I hope i can make most out of my upcoming weekends.
FUDcon was awesome, It was nice to see lot of people face to face.
I had lot of memorable moments at FUDCon, Rahul played a prank on how i stole pair of baby pink coloured slippers from srishti (the baby pink slippers are now talk of the town, read other’s blog posts ) The mini push up’s competition at FUDPub. Taste of my first beer/cocktail ( i have no plans to drink again ). I am sure events like FUDCon will help bring people together and instrumental in creating a strong community. Thanks Red Hat for sponsoring my travel and accommodation .
This is my first ever foss.in. My flight arrived at bangalore by 8.30 in the morning. It took me nearly 2 hrs to reach my hotel from the airport. Beware if you want to catch a flight you better prepare and go well ahead of the time ’cause bangalore’s traffic sucks. I met aditya, amit and shreyank at the hotel and we headed towards the foss.in venue.
Everything started an hour late. The first talk was about wikipedia. Danese cooper CTO of wikimedia foundation gave a talk on the technology that drives the world’s fifth largest website. Santhosh thottingal’s work on wiki2cd was appreciated by the wikimedia team. wiki2cd helps in creating offline content out of wikipedia.After the talk we met rahul and got our Fedora t-shirts (yay!) .
In the afternoon aditya and i went into meego mini-conf sessions by Nokia. Nokia is really trying to push meego into the mainstream (Good luck Nokia). In the evening the keynote address was given by rahul. He talked on a topic named “Failures of Fedora and what we have learned from them”, he gave us insights into what red hat/community did wrong and what they learnt from it. It was an awesome talk. Some points from his talk includes merger of core/extras repositories into a single repo, opening up the infrastructure, focus on improving packaging quality/guidelines, the problems they faced with documentation(because of red hat’s initial stand on freeing up the documentation license) , the proposed removal of CLA, the new update policy etc.
Finally we Fedora folks including lennart poettering went into a bar/restaurant and had a very good dinner. Thanks to the community architecture team for everything. We spent lot of time talking about what could be done to improve the project. Harish pillay joined us there later in the restaurant. He explained why LTSP in Fedora needs some love and how it is getting distro centric. We came back to hotel by 11.30 PM.
More pictures at http://www.zer0c00l.in/impressions/index.php/FOSS-IN-2010