Archive for the ‘FLOSS in India’ Category
In case you were wondering, Celliax.Org is about:
F.decorate(_ge(‘photo_notes’), F._photo_notes).notes_go_go_go(2968247090, ‘http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3237/2968247090_b8d90c8044_t.jpg’, ’3.1444′);
Techie-guru and ex-editor friend Vickram Crishna announced in cyberspace that Giovanni Maruzzelli would be visiting India. After a few emails were exchanged, he added Goa to his route.
This Italian techie believes that the right solutions can turn telephones into a powerful tool. He speaks at the BITS Pilani Goa campus (Zuarinagar) on Wednesday, October 22, 2008 at 6 pm. Giovanni explains how techies could make a difference. An interview with Frederick Noronha (FN).
FN: What is the focus of your trip to India?
Giovanni Maruzzelli: I’m focusing mainly on two things: to enjoy incredible India, and to enjoy its incredibly good food.
As an aside, I want to get acquainted with the technical communities that relate (as users, developers, entrepreneurs, administrators, teachers, etc) to free and open source software. I’m making presentations at various venues around India about the free software that I’m now contributing to.
This software is used to connect the Asterisk PBX [http://www.asterisk.org] or private branch exchange to the GSM and Skype networks for making and receiving voice calls and SMSs.
[A private branch exchange (PBX) is a telephone exchange that serves a particular business or office, as opposed to one that a common carrier or telephone company operates for many businesses or for the general public. PBXs are also referred to as PABX (private automatic branch exchange) or EPABX (electronic private automatic branch exchange).]
It uses second-hand, recycled or cheap cellphones as interfaces to the GSM network.
FN: What do you hope to achieve here?
Giovanni Maruzzelli: I would like to get an idea about how open source is perceived in India, and to understand how it is used toward social and economic development.
Also, to get to know what can be done in the future using open source to narrow the digital divide at social (between rich and poor) and geographical (between city and village) level.
I’m interested to both the commercial and the educational-social applications of open source in fast growing countries.
FN: How has the trip shaped up so far?
Giovanni Maruzzelli: I’m still at the beginning of my trip. I’ve just visited Chennai, Mumbay and Auroville (Pondicherry) for very few days each. But in each place I’ve been very refreshed by, and glad to see, the people that come to the presentations of Asterisk-celliax-skypiax.
I see that there is a precise awareness, also among people who have no technical knowledge, about how strategic the new voice communication technologies — and mobile communication — could be for India.
How much easier, on many occasions, it is for people to interact using a phone than using a computer. And how is important to move toward an approach that combines low cost, low power, recycling, and sustainability.
So, I can say the response so far has been very much satisfying and stimulating for me.
FN: What do you see as the potential for Asterisk and the related software tools in India, and why?
Giovanni Maruzzelli: India is a very big country, with a thriving fast growing economy, and a large and diverse population with various languages, instruction level, and grade of access to communication technologies.
It also has wide differences between countryside and the big cities. In such a context, organizations, communities, companies and public administration have to evaluate and use each tools that allows them to interconnect with and between people.
Voice communication, when it is managed by advanced technologies like Asterisk and VoIP, allows for a large public to tap the same benefits of information access and interactivity that the internet allows to the technical advanced part of the population.
Voice menus, the phone interrogation of databases, speech synthesis and recognition, automatc attendants — these are technologies ready right now to be implemented.
Also, there is a fast growing market for any technology that can save money in telecommunication.
VoIP, Asterisk, FreeSwitch, and the other open source technologies allow for bigger savings, and for extreme flexibility. Both at the level of big telco and at the small office or tiny community level.
I’ve had experiences as founder of the first mass consumer ISP and portal in Italy, as partner in an incubator and venture capital private fund and as an Internet and Telecommunication Investment Expert for the World Bank-IFC in Serbia (ex Yugoslavia). So I know very well that if you start from technologies that have a high degree of usefulness and a great potential for penetration, you can build a viable and successful business.
So, all the pieces are there, and I see a very bright future in India for all the opensource technologies related to VoIP.
FN: How do you see the skills of techies in India?
Giovanni Maruzzelli: The Indian elite technologists are the best in the world; but this is not news.
With such a big population, India will however have to grow a much bigger number of medium and advanced techies, that can bring about innovations in all parts of the country.
FN: Finally, tell a little about Celliax.org and its focus.
The website http://www.celliax.org is the gathering point for the development of celliax, skypiax and directoriax technologies, that allows for a cheap interconnection between fixed lines, Skype, GSM, and VoIP.
Being an open source project, any person in the world is encouraged to contribute — at least by way of a comment, or a suggestion. We also receive help, code, and fixes from people living in many different countries.
Celliax uses second-hand, recycled and cheap cellphones as interfaces between VoIP and the GSM networks.
After a flurry of emails across the continents (and within Goa), it’s finally getting done. Giovanni Maruzzelli of Celliax.org is due to talk in Goa (BITS-Pilani Goa campus, Oct 22, 2008 at 6 pm, at the lecture theatre).
The focus of his talks are this:
Topic: chan_celliax and chan_skypiax, how to add gsm and skype capabilities to Asterisk
- Asterisk overview
- Asterisk’s Channel Drivers overview
- Hardcore Asterisk development challenges
- How chan_celliax works: audio, signaling, dsp
- chan_celliax hardware: audiocables, datacables, cellphones
- how chan_skypiax works: audio, signaling
- celliax and skypiax dialplan usage
- celliax and skypiax AMI manager usage
- directoriax, app_directory on steroids
- putting all together in a simple example
- Q&A Session
Thanks to Hitesh Mantrala for working out things at the BITS Pilani Goa centre end. Vickram Crishna, a techie-journalist and IITian alumni of Mumbai said: “A terrific opportunity for lucky people in those cities to meet him.” Alberto Escudero-Pascual wrote in an earlier email: “The last week I have been working with Giovanni Maruzzelli, the hacker behind the celliax.org project, a channel for Asterisk that allows to connect a standard phone to a PBX using a sound card and a data cable. Giovanni, is going to travel to India (Chennai area) and he has asked for FOSS-type of contacts in the country….”
A member of the worldwide open source community for over twelve years, Giovanni is the proud owner of the Mysql license n.1, and as a speaker, trainer and magazines writer he was instrumental to the introduction of Internet, Unix, Linux and open source to the Italian technical public.
In the beginning of the Internet era, Giovanni was one of the founders of Italia Online, the most popular Italian portal and consumer ISP, and architect of its Internet technologies – http://www.iol.it Then supervisor of Internet operations and architect of the first engine for paid access to www.ilsole24ore.com, the most read financial newspaper in Italy and to its databases (migrated from mainframe).
After that, he was CEO of venture capital funded Matrice, developing Telemail unified messaging and multi language phone access to email (Text To Speech), and CTO of incubator funded Open4, an open source managed applications provider. As a partner In3 fund Giovanni has often evaluated the technical and financial soundness of submitted business plans. Then he was for two years in Serbia as Internet and Telecommunication Investment Expert for World Bank – IFC. Giovanni is now consulting and is based in Milan, Italy. His email address: gmaruzz at celliax.org
We, in Goa, were lucky to lure him over. Some quick emails helped. The image of Goa did the rest. After all, who doesn’t like to visit here? (I think the government pundits should just give up on their dreams of competing with Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune or even Thiruvananthapuram, Hubli and Pondicherry) and just make Goa a destination for IT events, happenings, fairs and conferences. The people here are smart enough to pick up things and take it further on from there
Sukumar Anikar <email@example.com>  and Prasad <firstname.lastname@example.org> managed to get across to me a copy of a DVD … and what a DVD at that! It contained a whole lot of fascinating educational software for school children.
A couple of nights ago, I ended up ‘playing’ some educational games with Aren, 5, and told him that my friends had sent the same across free. “Did you say ‘thank you’?” he asked me in turn. In fact, he kept ‘playing’ on these games, though it was almost midnight, and even though he’s too small to obviously understand many of the concepts being taught here (decimal fractions, and what not … but big enough to be interested in the wild animals of the jungle and to try and comprehend how fruits and a balanced diet gives us the energy we need to do work). The ‘games’ sent across in this DVD work excellently and without flaw (so far) on my Ubuntu laptop. They have been adjusted to work with the GNU/Linux operating system.
It drew my interest enough to dash across another email to Sukumar and Prasad, requesting more programmes.Given the medium of instructions being used (and subjects taught) in Goa, I am particularly interested in software dealing with:
- English language
- Hindi language
- Environmental Science
- General Science
- Social Science
- Co-curricular subjects
Check out the long list of what’s available. http://www.azimpremjifoundation.org/html/E_Learn_Mat_table1.htm
The Azim Premji Foundation is actually keen to work with educational institutions (rather than with individuals, if I understood right) for obvious reasons.
Said the APF in a mail to me: “We always support the state governments by providing them the Digital Learning Resource (DLR) for deployment in Government schools. Generally, the support is by providing the right to replicate our content to the state, without any costs. Our Digital Learning Resource is not provided if the intended use is for commercial purposes. We also share content with NGOs and other institutions who manage schools where there is no barrier on admissions and where no fee is being charged.”
And Mr Anikar added, “Almost all our titles or Digital Learning Resource are trilingual i.e. in English, Hindi and in any one of the regional languages. While we have just 10 titles in Marathi the same is not available for immediate release as they have to be validated by a state government. However, we will share other titles that are in English and Hindi. Further, we are also in the process of making our content compatible with [GNU]Linux platform and hence for the present we will be sharing only such titles which are compatible with both windows and Linux and those that have been tested. The remaining titles would be shared on a future date and on completion of testing. We will be clustering our titles in a couple of DVD’s and send it across to you in the next week…. We also wish to state that there is a process that needs to be followed in implementing the Digital Learning Resource in schools which we will share the same with you once you confirm the receipt of Digital Learning Resource .”
And: ” Digital Learning Resource are not meant to help in computer literacy. The target group is children in the age group of 6-14 years and the Digital Learning Resource primarily presents concepts related to Maths, Science and Language related to the curriculum for classes Standard I to Standard VIII.”
By way of background, from their website: ” Azim Premji Foundation has commenced the digital content creation effort in the year 2002. So far, Foundation has created over 100+ master CD titles for the classes 1 to 8 and the same have been translated into various regional languages in India including few tribal languages. The content is created with the pedagogical focus to enable the children to directly use and learn where the teacher will act as facilitator. The attributes of the content are; curriculum oriented, child-centered, self paced, interactive and multimedia based content.”
You probably know that Azim Premji is the Chairman and CEO of one of India’s largest software companies, Wipro. Wikipedia [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Azim_Premji] says he was rated the richest man in India between 1999 to 2005 (and is probably among the top five now). This impressed me: “Premji is known for his modesty and frugality in spite of his wealth. He drives a Toyota Corolla and flies economy class, prefers to stay in company guest houses rather than luxury hotels and even served food on paper plates at a lunch honouring his son’s wedding.”
Check it out. Really useful stuff. The educational content on the DVDs, I mean!
 Head – Technology for Education, Azim Premji Foundation, #134, Doddakannelli, Next to Wipro Corporate Office, Sarjapur Road, Bangalore – 560 035 Tel: 91-80-66144900/901/902 (Board) 91-80-66144922 (Direct) Fax: 91-80-66144903 Mobile: 09449820054 www.azimpremjifoundation.org
Sourabh Khajanchi <email@example.com> who is a fifth semester engineering student in Bhopal, wrote in to say, “I am starting a Linux User Group in my college…. I need some help from you. I want to know about the various events and activities a LUG should organise.”
My (hurried, and delayed) response?
Linux Online – Linux User Group HOWTO
The Linux User Group HOWTO is a guide to founding, maintaining, …
6.1 LUG support organisations; 6.2 Founding a LUG; 6.3 Maintaining and
growing a LUG …
set up and maintain (continuously) an active mailing list. Either
Googlegroups or Yahoogroups, if not your own server on Mailman, works
Good wishes to you.
END OF QUOTE
Hope this works for others too…
Photo from an earlier LUG activity (ECAP 2006).
A GNU/Linux user group (LUG) meeting tomorrow, Saturday, July 26, 2008 from 3-5 pm at the Goa Science Centre.Dhaval Giani <firstname.lastname@example.org> volunteered:
“Am in goa for the next week. Can do a short talk on becoming a “Becoming a Fedora Package Maintainer, no rocket science”. Can also talk about building a community around an open source project.” Wish I could make it, but have to be in Quepem at the same time.
10 Jul, 2008, 1030 hrs IST, IANS
BANGALORE: With a name like LinuxChix-India, you might think its mission is trivial, but their goal is serious: creating equal access for women to enter the world of technology.
Archana Raghupathy of Chennai started LinuxChix-India in 2005. It is the Indian chapter of the global women techies’ network Linuxchix.org, and “tries to empower Indian women to use, develop and contribute to the world of free and open source software (FOSS).”
Globally, LinuxChix is a community for women who “like Linux and Free Software” and for women and men who want to support women in computing. Its members range from novices to experienced users and include professional and amateur programmers, system administrators and technical writers.
It also works to bring together women around India involved in various FOSS projects, foster participation and share knowledge in a geeky world where males usually dominate.
“Back when I started (being active) online, revealing one’s gender meant the usual picture requests or maybe personal questions after a few mails under the guise of volunteering. But I doubt if it will happen to a woman today,” Vidya Ayer, one of those involved in the LinuxChix-India project, said.
Using the online identity of VidAyer, she currently volunteers for a number of global free software projects.
These include the popular GNU/Linux groups like Ubuntu, Ubuntu-Women, Linuxchix, Debian-Women, KDE-Women and the open directory project DMOZ. Some projects like Debian-Women and KDE-Women acknowledge the low participation rates of women in FOSS initiatives and attempt to encourage more of them to join in.
LinuxChix-India takes up geeky topics like “Introduction to Linux Kernel: Basics”, showing that women can do anything in this often male-dominated field – if given the chance. Its members show their abilities and encourage one another. For instance, Aneesha Govil and Barkha Khatri are into “FOSS evangelism” – spreading the word about it.
Ani Peter works on localising software to Indian languages, Ankita Garg is into Linux kernel hacking, Archana is into scripting, Kadambari Devarajan is into theoretical computer science, Priti Patil works on education, and Runa Bhattarjee is into mentoring, apart from other things.
Ayer explained why women find it tough to enter computing, including free software.
“It’s the lack of infrastructure, while the lack of computer access also plays some role. Most men who don’t own computers would use a friend’s machine; women in India would not have the freedom to stay late at a friend’s place to hack away,” she explained.
Mentoring can help a lot, members of LinuxChix India feel. FOSS volunteers need to introduce and teach them packaging, translation, bug squashing (correcting errors in software code) and the like.
“At the entry level, volunteering is easy if you know what you want to do. Also most men I’ve met so far appreciate the extra efforts put to cross that GNU/Linux-learning-curve,” Ayer said. “However, today it’s a lot more difficult to be sexist and the existence of FOSS women’s groups makes it tough to get away with negative behaviour,” she added.
About herself, Ayer said: “It’s been a self-taught learning experience, thanks to all the online manuals, tutorials and (mailing) lists. I started off volunteering with dmoz.org and Wikipedia communities, then LinuxChix.”
Kadambari Devarajan, a Chennai student doing her masters in software engineering and who aims to enter a graduate school in the US and focus on theoretical computer science, feels women have it tough and equal access is still some time away.
“There are few women in technology and fewer still in FOSS. Women still have to straddle other responsibilities especially if they are employed. Women (at least in India) still haven’t broken free completely,” she said.
“Knowing a lot of women from rural India, I have had a number of discussions with them. Their parents and later in-laws are the ones who decide for them,” Devarajan added.
She feels other factors come in – a lack of awareness and the lack of suitable rewards.
“The reasons for fewer women in FOSS seems comparable to the reasons for fewer women in research. I personally can quote a number of problems faced.
“The problem is not with the guys using FOSS, it’s with the men outside of it. Bureaucracy and a condescending attitude are a few problems that come to mind,” Devarajan added.
Rut Pinto Viegas Jesus (yellow, right), demos a model of the OLPC at Miramar.
PANJIM, Jan 30: Goa, a small state with some early initiatives at taking computing to students and school, scored another early attempt when the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) computer was demoed here at a low-profile event.
The One Laptop per Child association (OLPC) is a non-profit organization, created by faculty members of the MIT Media Lab, set up to oversee The Children’s Machine project and the construction of the XO-1 “$100 laptop”.
This tiny and unusual computer was demoed at the monthly meeting of ILUG-Goa, the Free Software and Open Source user group that meets at the Goa Science Centre in Miramar, last Saturday (Jan 26, 2008).
The XO-1, previously known as the $100 Laptop or Children’s Machine, is an inexpensive laptop computer intended to be distributed to children in “developing: countries around the world, to provide them with access to knowledge, and opportunities to “explore, experiment and express themselves” (constructionist learning).
The laptops can be sold to governments and issued to children by schools on a basis of one laptop per child. Pricing is currently set to start at US$188 and the goal is to reach the $100 mark in 2008.
But such computers are hard to come by here. This is more so as India rejected the initiative, saying “it would be impossible to justify an expenditure of this scale on a debatable scheme when public funds continue to be in inadequate supply for well-established needs listed in different policy documents.”
Ms. Rut Pinto Viegas Jesus, a Copenhagen-based PhD researcher of Goan-Portuguese ancestry, managed to bring down one model of the computer, while visiting Goa on holiday and a family visit to her relations in Santa Cruz and Salcete.
OLPC, which has caused a lot of excitement worldwide, and promises to take computing to children in the less-affluent world, espouses five core principles — child ownership; low ages; saturation; connection; and free and open source.
Incidentally, inspite of its small size and otherwise technological low-rating, Goa has managed to undertake some initiatives in spreading the use of computers, albeit with mixed results.
In the 1990s, expat Goans supported and launched the Goa Computers in Schools Project (GCSP), which despite the odds and a number of hurdles, shipped in a couple of containers of once-used computers, to be refurbished and used in some local schools. Nearly 400+ computers were distributed this way.
After the BJP government came to power in 2000, then chief minister Manohar Parrikar launched the hi-visibility Cyberage scheme, which gave almost-free computers to college students.
So far, the jury is out on the Cyberage scheme, with some questioning its priorities.
Critics focus on the shortcomings of a scheme which gave tens of thousands of computers to students — sometimes more than one in a family — without clear plans for using the same, even while school computer labs and teachers sometimes lacked the facilities.
Meanwhile, the GCSP project was itself scaled down and wound up, due to factors ranging from donor-fatigue and a lack of volunteers, to the growing availability of computer hardware here, which was not as costly as it once was.
Rut, visiting Goa this week, is doing her PhD in Copenhagen, on issues related to the Wikipedia, the surprisingly-successful volunteer-driven online encyclopedia that has built itself into one of the top ten most-visited sites in the world.
Her to visit her grandmum and family in Santa Cruz and “to get some sun”, she said: “I’m also keen to meet other Goans interested in the stuff I am, and will bring my newly arrived XO-1 (OLPC) and that might also be interesting.”
Earlier in January 2008, Free Software and Open Source campaigner Venkatesh ‘Venky’ Hariharan shared his experiences in visiting an the OLPC deployment in Khairat, which is around 55 kilometres outside Mumbai.
This deployment is supported by Reliance, one of the largest industrial groups in India, and is the first in India.
“The deployment is two months old and the parents, children and teachers are very enthusiastic about this project,” reported Venky.
At the meet in Miramar, local techies, educationists and others showed interest in the computer-for-kids, while Rut Jesus explained how the project worked. Her friends have been involved in the project, which she praised as “very self-motivated”.
Some voiced disappointment that India had turned down the project without giving it a good try. Educators decried the policy of keeping students away from playing around with technology and hard-ware.
Others pointed to tools like Gcompris, a free software suite for children between 2 to 10 years of age, and their potential to make learning computing a pleasurable activity.
Some queries focussed on its innovative screen, the ability to use it “as a book”, the XO-1′s ability to ‘mesh network’ with other computers of its kind, and how young techies could get access to the code and specifications needed for them to contribute software back to the project.
Blogged with Flock
GeekyBodhi.net is my techie colleague Mayank Sharma’s blog. Check it out… found an interesting interview with the founder of distrowatch.com on it…
This is what Mayank writes:
Hello. Welcome to my little 50Meg corner on the web. I am Mayank Sharma, writer, programmer, student, and more
I have been writing on technology, especially free and open software,for the past five years. During this period I helped launch SouthAsia’s leading FLOSS monthlyLINUX For Youas its Assistant Editor. I am currently busy putting together aweb-based publication devoted to Localization, Education and FLOSSmigration. Besides writing, I love to hack also, my most recentcontribution — an installer for the Utkarsh Localization Project. Still struggling for a computer sciene degree, I love Formula one car racing.
Blogged with Flock
Building Tag Clouds in Perl and PHP
Ebook in PDF format
$9.99 US, $12.99 CAN
Tag clouds? What are those?
O’Reilly’s new e-book ‘Building Tag Clouds in Perl and PHP’ by Jim Bumgardner explains a concept every serious user of cyberspace would have at least heard of.
Says Bumbardner: “Tag clouds are everywhere on the Web these days. First popularized by the web sites Flickr, Technorati, and del.icio.us, these amorphous clumps of words now appear on a slwe of web sites as visual evidence of their membership in the elite corps of ‘Web 2.0′.”
Wikipedia says: “A tag cloud (more traditionally known as a weighted list in the field of visual design) is a visual depiction of content tags used on a website. Often, more frequently used tags are depicted in a larger font or otherwise emphasized, while the displayed order is generally alphabetical. Thus both finding a tag by alphabet and by popularity is possible. Selecting a
single tag within a tag cloud will generally lead to a collection of items that are associated with that tag.”
If you’re a content person like this reviewer, why bother at all about all this stuff? As long as I get my neatly-laid out keywords that give me a clue of what’s where, why worry?
But then, someone has to do the job of getting the tag clouds to work. And that’s where this book is born out of a need.
It may be a fad. But one which has “real merits” when used popularly, as Bumgardner explains. This e-book analyses what is and isn’t a tag cloud. It offers design tips for using them effectively, and also shows how to collect tags and display them in the tag cloud format.
Interesting background on issues like craiglist’s weighted cities list, and statistically improbable phrases (SIPs) or capitalized phrases (CAPs) lists provided by Amazon.com. SIP has word order corelating to the improbability of the phrase.
In the CAP list, the word order relates to the frequency with which the phrase appears in the book.
After some interesting history about tag clouds — which takes us to Flickr (who doesn’t know this photography-sharing web site?), tag roots in the blogging community, and Jim Flanagan’s Zeitgeist idea — things start to get technical.
There’s code, graphs and how-tos.Time for me to leave it to techies, who prefer raw coding to merely writing book reviews!
Interesting story, which came up via Digg.com: Delhi Government Phases Out MS Office, Adopts Free ODF-Based Office Suites To Save Licence Fee.
Digg.com’s posts adds,”LIC (HUGE insurance co that moved to RHL from Windows), Delhi HC & Nirvachan Sadan (Election Commission Office) Set To Follow. It was costing Rs 24 Lac pa (US$ 52k, equal to 10x ave of annual salary of engg. Bachelors recruited by any top IT co. in India).”
Check the original story from the Times of India epaper.
Only regret: there could be better reasons for opting for Free Software!
When we met last, Warren Noronha was a young geek, maybe just out of his teens. That was quite some time ago, and in Belgaum, a bustling city outside Goa where an engineering college was holding a GNU/Linux event for their students.
Warren impressed me, and stuck in my mind. Not just because we shared a surname. But he came across as Mr Quiet Efficiency.
Sometime later, I heard of him via another friend: Marlon Menezes, who together with Ulysses Menezes and Herman Carneiro was one of the early players from Goa (actually, from among the Goan diaspora), who understood what Net technologies could actually achieve. Marlon had set up GoaWeb (… am struggling to find it via the Archive.org archives). Here is a note mentioning early (and not-so-early) Goa initiatives in cyberspace.
Warren wrote in recently to announce new plans. He wrote about plans to promote Drupal development in India. Says he:
With 75,000+ Drupal power websites and an emerging industry supporting over 150 professionals, the open-source Drupal project and community is exploding. At the heart of this community is an incredibly active and productive group of contributors. Creating contributed modules, themes, bug fixes, and core enhancement, these individuals define the course of the Drupal project and the ecosystem of users, tinkerers, and professionals around it. Through this internship program we will attempt to train students from India the ins and outs of Drupal and help them established themselves as long term contributors to the Drupal project. Over two months the selected students will work closely with project mentors on real world Drupal projects; contributed modules, and core patches. They will learn the Drupal development process and gain extremely valuable experience interacting with a live open-source project. Students will be paid a stipend of 4,600 INR to 8,000 INR a month depending on the level of their contributions to the Drupal project. More Information: http://drupal.in/training.
Drupal is a modular content management framework, content management system and blogging engine which was originally written by Dries Buytaert as a bulletin board system. Today, it is used by many high-traffic websites, including The Onion, Spread Firefox (CivicSpace, see below), Ourmedia, KernelTrap, and the Defective by Design campaign. Drupal is written in PHP. As of June 1st, 2006, the current version is 4.7.2.
Warren says he’s involved with the project in India and:
Currently we are spreading the word thats not going as well as we hoped, we currently have about 17 applicants. Which is a good number considering that there are going to be only 10 chosen. They (the Drupal team) selected India because even with such a huge number of developers; there were not many Drupal contributors (just me and another two guys). While I was forming Drupal India, some one independently came up with the idea of having this, and approached CivicSpace. And I got roped in by one of the CivicSpace founders.
Warren says the idea is
to have something like the Google Summer of Code”. But this is going to be Drupal and India specific. The idea is to give students the chance to work on free software projects. Our intention is to make them long term contributors. Since some of them are going to be freshers they can use this as experience for their resume and they can list us as references. Drupal benefits because we get long term contributors. Here is the FAQ About the project. http://drupal.in/summer-training-faq and here are dates for the project.
Warren wrote to say, “I was surprised that you remembered even though we met so briefly at Belgium.” Belgaum, old chap, not Belgium And while I’m forgetful about names, I have an awfully long memory for talent! Keep the flag flying…
What more, Warren is actually dropping hints about setting up base in Goa (welcome, we need good guys here!), doing work on Free Software, and mainly cater to the NGO market mainly in India. Inshallah, your dreams will one day come true.
What’s the http://osd.byethost8.com/?
Please don’t think this is spam of any kind.
I am a [GNU] Linux (and OSS) enthusiast and a moderately active member in the Bangalore and Bombay LUG mailing lists. I have just started out with a venture called The OpenSourceDeal. I plan to cater to the insatiable appetite of Indian OSS enthusiasts, newbies, converts and anyone else who may care to join in with an onslaught of OpenSource Software . Check out out site at: http://osd.byethost8.com/ Please feel free to forward this to your friends, girl-friends, imaginary friends, LUGs, other mailing lists and whoever else you think might find this site useful.
In Bangalore, the FSUG-Bangalore mailing list (Free Software User Group) is planning a conference on the GPLv3, or the GNU General Public License, version 3. The Free Software Foundation global page has already announced that the fourth international GPLv3 conference is to be held in Bangalore, India on August 23-24, 2006 on this page itself. Further details are available here.
FSUG-Bangalore introduces itself: “Free Software Users’ Group (FSUG), Bangalore is a small collective of Free Software users and advocates in Bangalore. As a part of FSF-India’s larger efforts to apply Free Software everywhere, we work together to ensure that the concepts of Freedom and Free Software are more widely promoted, discussed and applied in Bangalore. You can more details about our activities on our web site.
GPLv3 is the next version of the GNU General Public License. Wikipedia introduces the GPL saying: “The GNU General Public License (GNU GPL or simply GPL) is a widely-used free software license, originally written by Richard Stallman for the GNU project. The latest version of the license, version 2, was released in 1991. The GNU Lesser General Public License (LGPL) is a modified version of the GPL, intended for some software libraries.” As of 2006, version 3 of the GPL is being written by Richard Stallman, with legal counsel from Eben Moglen and Software Freedom Law Center.
This is the website of the Open Solutions is Public Administration Forum is being defined as “work towards analyzing, and supporting the use of Open Data Standards (ODS) and Open Solutions (OS) for e-Government and Public Administration (PA) in the Asia Pacific region.” Check out the site. It has details of a draft agenda of a forthcoming conference too, to be held from October 26 to 28.
Conference themes include * Interoperability & Open Standards for e-Government Services * Public Procurement Strategies for Open Solutions * Implementing Open Standards in Public Administration – Global Experiences * Country level Strategies & Experiences – Asia Pacific * Adopting Open Solutions as Policy – Challenges & Strategies * Open Source Policy Implications – Total Cost of Ownership * Capacity Building Strategies for Open Solutions Deployment * Open Source for Learning and Education.