Tag Archives: linuxchix india

Lazy Saturday and the LC Meet in Pune

Woke up at 11 in the morning (after dad called). It was very windy outside and the doors kept banging shut. Half-dozing, managed to reach the SICSR for the Linuxchix Pune meet. A nice one and half hour of brainstorming and we have come up with an event for July 5th. A Python+Apache, hands on session. Also, Shubhra had a nice idea about putting together a 2-3 member team, who would be collating information about the insitutes where we might be able to conduct sessions (e.g. identify institutes and points of contact, do background check of the audience profile etc.). Shubhra and Smriti have volunteered to take on the role for now. The gory details from the meet would be posted by Shruti later.

All the girls were wearing sarees (and looking gorgeous), as they had to attend a lecture at 6 PM and formal attire was mandatory. They even roped in their Head of Department for the meet.

Was caught in the rain, while returning home. Its still raining and the temperature has dropped a few notches.

IRC nicks and LC Meet in Pune

Since Sankarshan has gone out of town, its been pretty quiet around the house these days. To build up the noise levels, I have been watching movies from our collection. Started with the first part of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Well, the film series has been much talked about, so no point going all over it again. What I can say though is – too many familiar irc nicks are around. ๐Ÿ˜€

A plane takes off from Heathrow – picture by Sankarshan

On a serious note, LinuxChix India – Pune group is meeting up this weekend for a CityMeet.

  • Date: 14th June (Saturday)
  • Time: 4 PM
  • Place: Symbiosis Institute of Computer Studies and Research (The place where the Pune LUG meets happen)

    Smriti, from SICSR has been co-ordinating this meet and has done a great job so far to put everything together. See you there.

  • LC session at Abeda Inamdar Senior College, Pune

    Last Saturday, /me and Ani headed off towards Abeda Inamdar Senior College in the morning, for a session on Linux Desktop basics. The session had been organised by Ms. Malika Siamwala, a teacher with the Department of Mathematics in the college. Its located within the Azam Campus, a beautiful location that houses about 10 institutes and playgrounds. Ani and I walked through the sprawling campus, trying to locate the college and exchanging anecdotes about our own college days.

    The session was scheduled to start at 10:00 AM, but we started a little later. (Ms.Siamwala welcomed us with roses too :O ) We were told that the students from the mathematics department were not familiar with Linux at all, however they would be using it in their labs (which recently underwent an OS change) pretty soon. I started by showing off the desktop features like the log-in screen, user accounts, file browsers etc. A quick straw poll revealed that most people in the room used their computers to write documents in a word processor, surf web pages in a browser, make presentations, draw, play music, watch movies etc. The OO.o writer, OO.o impress, gimp, firefox, xmms, xine impressed them pretty much. A small introduction to community-based collaborative participation in Open source software development followed. However, imho, it might need another complete session to pass on the message and to give them a relatable picture. Next up was Manjusha with an introduction about the Pune Linux Users Group. She also spent some time answering questions about Open source software for Mathematical and Statistical analysis. Smriti, Shruti and Rashmi – students at SCISR shared their experiences from GNUnify. It was really nice to see them again. By this time, there were close to 60 people in the room. Some goodies (read LC stickers and gnome badges) were handed out. I also handed Ms.Siamwalla a copy of the Fedora 8 CD set, Fedora 8 LiveCD, printed copy of the Fedora Installation Guide and Desktop User Guide and a CD containing a set of screencasts gathered from the links collected by Nirbheek, Ankita and Gayathri. Thanks a lot. ๐Ÿ™‚

    After the discussions ended, the students trooped around us for a better look at the applications as well as the localized desktop on my laptop. Ms.Siamwala later took us to their Department room and we had yummy samosas and sweets. Later we went to meet the Principal of the College, Mr.H.Khan. He invited us to have more sessions at the college.

    An enriching experience for all of us and I really hope to be back there soon.

    A few images here (the lights were a little dimmed out and I messed up with the camera settings):

    p.s. Special Note of Thanks to quaid for helping me with the PDF version of the Fedora Installation Guide and the Desktop User Guide. ๐Ÿ™‚

    GNUnify 08, LC-India BoF etc.

    Albeit late entry about the event that was held at SCISR (Pune) last weekend – GNUnify 08. Besides the fact that the chirpy volunteers always make me wish that I was back in college and part of such a nice event, it was a nice occassion to meet up with friends, talk about stuff and generally have a good time. This year, I had a talk+BOF on behalf for LinuxChix – India. I started off with a general introduction about the group and then we moved onto the proposed agenda for the BoF. After the CityMeet last month, this was another nice brainstorming session. The session notes are up here, with a huge list of To-Dos that can be taken up during the year. Some of the tasks would be done locally, but overall the ideas are easily reproducable elsewhere too. Perhaps, the gang in Pune could lead the way. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Another fun bit was the proposal to have the group’s presence at various social networking sites. Barkha also seems to have received the same request at another event, where she was talking the very next day. Well, if the not-so-traditional forums help us take forward the idea amongst the youngsters, then it sounds like a pretty much fun idea.

    A few of the *tireless* volunteers:

    Even Karunakar turned up with the LC tee to show support. Really, sweet of him. He has been helping us all in the indic l10n community for a long time now and is a wonderful mentor. ๐Ÿ™‚

    And Barkha, real sweetheart, brought us lovely home-cooked-her-mummy-made-yummy-stuff..

    ..travelling 10 hours on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway.

    Ankita’s talk is up next at TechKriti – IIT Kanpur.

    Planets, some observations and tasks done

    During the day I keep visiting multiple planets to get a general overview of things that people are talking about.

    To start off (with some drumroll) there is a new planet exclusively for Indian women in the FOSS world: planet.linuxchix.org.in. Its still in a beta stage and Barkha is working to fine tune it. More feeds welcome and do drop in a mail to planet-admin at linuxchix dawt org dawt in to get on-board.

    This morning I read Atul‘s listing of the FOSS events happening in the next few days all over India. This list along with Puthali‘s mail to the LinuxChix-India mailing list helped me redraw up the “Upcoming Event list” on the LinuxChix-India main page. There had been some complaints about the wiki main page looking cluttered. So as an attempt to correct it, the “Events” and “Upcoming FOSS Events” sections have been merged into Upcoming Events of Interest. A big list for February and March is in place already. Under each event, the participating members could add their talks/sessions etc. However, this format can always be changed if its not looking pretty. Also, there are new pages now for the CityMeets and Past participation by LinuxChix India members at various events.

    (Also, my talk+BoF (one session) for GNUnify 08 got accepted. Its on the second day of the event i.e. 9th February at 3:30 PM in the afternoon.)

    Ankita has done some work on the Task List page to segregate the tasks according to their status.

    The other post that intrigued me was by Kart_ referring to the article about the EEE laptop and PC launched by ASUS. The opening lines from the article claim that the the EEE PC is aimed at “pupils, housewives, old persons, and teenagers“. Are’nt “target users” of gadgets to be judged by the “use they put it into” and or “volume of usage”, rather than their status/age.
    What kind of “pupils or teenagers” are being talked about here?
    What age (or perhaps baldness level) defines “Old persons”?
    “Housewives”…ahem…I consider myself a “married working professional who also looks after the house she lives in” – does that count?

    LinuxChix India – Pune City meet and wiki love

    We had the first Pune City Meet of LinuxChix India today. Not too many people yet it was a fun brainstorming session. Most of us seemed to agree that enriching the wiki with content targetted at both new FOSS users as well as old users with special interests would help garner support and active contributions. Minutes should be up on Monday by Ani.

    While waiting for the meeting to start, I added in a few new sections on the wiki main page

    1. Volunteering

    This section would link to projects of special interest where members can volunteer to contribute. The current list reads as:

    Kernel and LSB
    Bug Squashing and Testing
    Education Projects
    Mentoring Programs
    Mobile Devices
    Programming Languages
    Promotion and Outreach
    FLOSS Message Promotion
    LC-IN Administrative Tasks
    FOSS Events

    2. NewBie Corner

    This section is targetted for New members – both familiar and not-familiar with FoSS. This may contain resources that will help the new members become familiar with the group’s guidelines and also tutorials (text/audio/visual) to help new-users with various FOSS applications. Perhaps I could borrow some of Kushal‘s videocasts for this section.

    3. KnowledgeBase

    The knowledgebase is something that I would really love to see grow. It can be a placeholder for contributions by members as well as pointer to external documents and other contents of interest. This would need categorization.

    Just realised: All the above sections can also be localized!

    It would be great to hear some feedback on this. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

    Foss.in, LinuxChix and some very nice people

    I had always heard/read about foss.in. This time I saw it for myself. Its huge. I had put in a talk for the Gnome Project day and it got accepted. Besides that, I had suggested for a small BoF session on the LinuxChix India mailing list as I expected most of the ladies on the list to be around for the event.

    LinuxChix India Chapter was started about 2-3 years back by Archana and a mailing list set up. During that time a lot of mails were exchanged regarding the goals for the group, mailing etiquette and other tid-bits. Then, Sulamita Garcia dropped by at Foss.in (with the really pretty LC.BR tees) and people outside the mailing list sat up and took notice of the ladies within the growing FOSS community in India. Things slowed down a bit for a while and this year we got ourselves an irc channel (#indichix on irc.linuxchix.org) and a wiki (linuxchix.org.in). Then came the proposal for the aforementioned small BoF session. One of us checked with Atul about the possibility of having the session during the event and after a nod from him, we decided to tom-tom our party with some posters and banners. With one thing leading to another, we suddenly found ourselves with a PowerBof, some cool stickers sponsored by Team Foss.in, a stall at the FOSS Expo (which by the way was a really cool place to hang out hats) and huge support.

    On the day of the session, most of us gathered at the stall. Thanks to irc, Vidya, Barkha, Aneesha, Ankita and I have been talking a lot the past few months and it did not take any ice-breaking moments for us to quickly gather around on the carpetted floor. Sitting cross-legged we discussed quickly about the BoF session that was to happen in another 1 hour 30 minutes. As with BoF sessions, the discussions swayed a lot and instead of describing it all over again, I’d rather point to the wonderful reports by Vid and Bubulle.

    On a serious note, the session notes are now up on the LinuxChix India site and lots of folks are joining up the mailing list. Welcome!

    This is just the start (albeit a wonderful one) and every sticker I handed out reminded me of the hard work that we need to put in to ensure that our ideas and dreams of gathering around a self-reliant community of women involved with Open Source software becomes a reality.