What I felt about FOSS meet
I reached NIT by 8PM on 4th along with Shyam & Krishnaraj, my college mates and Hiran. Hiran was one among the speakers and his talk was regarding font designing. After dinner we attended two talks. Since we were a bit late, we couldn’t attend the inauguration ceremony. Those who attended told that it was great, but there were rumors that the chief guest came for some other function and was asked to inaugurate FOSS meet. One among the speakers mentioned about that during his talk.
For the easiness to express what I felt about the talks I attended, I’ll be using ‘+’ for the positive side and ‘-‘ for the negative side.
The first talk was by Deepak R, one of the lecturer from NITC itself. His talk was about Octave and Maxima, which are alternatives for MATLAB. I couldn’t compare Octave and MATLAB because I haven’t used both of them. Now, about his talk:
+ Help full in acquiring a introductory idea about Octave and Maxima and what it can do.
+ Familiarized a few commands and the format of them.
– Felt as if he was not much prepared as he couldn’t clear the doubts from audience.
– Didn’t went deep to the software(I heard that Octave can do much more than just drawing graphs and making mathematical calculations)
The next talk was about Blogging and Publicity by Kiruba Shankar. He was a speaker last year too. His talk made me think about my identity in the net. Among the talks which I attended, it was the one with highest number of audience.
+ Was very interactive with the audience and encouraging (was running here and there among the audience during the talk).
+ Used his personal experience and examples well.
+ Gave the idea to preserve our identity in net.
– Just elaborated the ideas from the audience and there weren’t much to the ides from his part
I felt it funny that he told us to promote ourselves(means our blog and sites), but was wearing a T-shirt with Yahoo’s emblem. I also doubt that he gave away the chocolates that he offered for those who asked doubts. 🙂
There were confusion regarding the accommodation facilities and at last we(Me, Shyam and Krishnaraj) were admitted to PG1 hostel. I heard from those who were present in the last year’s FOSS meet that the organization of that meet was much better than this. Till 2AM, we talked to each other and watched few videos related to free software in Shyam’s laptop. He also gave us an introduction to E-Macs.
On 5th, the talks started by 9.30. There were two parallel streams. So, I missed Hiran’s talk as I preferred to attend the talk on OpenID by Praveen A. OpenID means the technique of using a single username and password over the net.
+ The topic was new to most of the audience, including me.
– The doubt about the idea of topic was there for a long time as all were using the conventional usename and password methods.
There were few problems related to the internet connection, which hindered the flow of talk.
There was a parallel session by Pramode sir in the lab for school students related to free software and python programming. We went to attend that too. We were surprised on looking at the schedule list which was there in our kit. It contained Shyam’s name for a project discussion about his GSoC project on speech recognition, “Sarika”. He said that he hasn’t done much on his project for the last two months. After seeing that, he was busy preparing slides and all. Mean while, I met Anivar, Praveen, Ani Peter, Baiju, Santhosh, Praveen Prakash, Mobin and others. Ani Peter was distributing the stickers related to GNOME and OpenOffice. I also got a GPLV3 badge from Anivar. Hiran was showing everyone a 4GB pen drive(Kunnamkulam made), which he bought just for RS 350. Krishnaraj was sad on hearing that as he bought a 2GB one for RS 650.
I also attended the session by Pavithran on “KDE for educational applications”. I couldn’t say much about it as I attended it for a few minutes only. Anyway, there was a confusion with the language as most of the audience were the school students and Praveen was translating the talk to Malayalam.
The next talk by Niyam Bhushan on Interface design was also interesting. He stated with examples that most of the softwares and gadgets were successfull due to its interface design. He also suggested few sites which will be helpful for interface design and showed one of his work. There was a little confusion for him to use the KDE desktop environment in Opensuse as the projector was not responding to his Ubuntu Studio system. He also complained that the interface is horrible.
+ Good interaction with the audience.
Later, I attended as a listener of the meeting of SMC members on creating and registering a society. More than 10 members were present in the meeting. We planned to leave in the evening as I have some works and Shyam have his university exam on Monday. But, since shyam’s project discussion was scheduled around 5.30, he couldn’t come along with me. I left NIT by 5.45PM and reached back home by 9.30PM
The FOSS meet was a new experience for me as it was for the first time I am attending such a meet. The organization of the meet was not as better as I hoped and the participation was less(May be its due to the Calicut university exams going on). I hope more details on the meet can be seen at www.fossmeet.in/nitc/ soon.
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