May 15, 2009

Fedora Activity Day at Dr. B.C Roy Engineering College

On 14th May, Thursday, a Fedora Activity Day was organized by the Durgapur Linux Users' Group (DGPLUG) at Dr. B.C Roy Engineering College, Durgapur. Though this event was in planning for a long time and was supposed to happen 1 months earlier, it had to be postponed by more than a month. But it finally materialised. Well as they say- "Better late than never".
Ratnadeep contacted me long back and I agreed to take a session on FEL and helping them out with the FAD in general. On the day of the FAD, I was all ready to tune in to FEL mode.
The organizers had arranged for a nice computer lab for the FAD. It had around 30 computers and each was running a FEL live DVD, the ones they had burned the previous night. These would be serving a triple purpose- FEL demonstration, KDE desktop demo and free media. All set up, we were waiting for the students who started arriving at around 11:30 a.m and the lab was almost full by 12:00 noon. We were there, ready to get, set and go.
The FAD started with an "Introduction to Fedora project" by makghosh followed a very nice presentation on " Myths about Linux busted with Fedora" by Kishan Goyal. Subhodip chipped in at times where some extra information needed to be provided. These two sessions established the foundation and explained to the people what Fedora is. Next in line was a very colourfull demonstration by our artwork team members, the Linux chix of DGPLUG. They showed some cool Inkscape handiwork and some artwork they had made themselves. What's the use of a Linux installation if you cannot use it. Yes usability is very important and the next demo served exactly this purpose. It was a demo on Desktop usability. Sunny Sharma, with a little help from Ratnadeep and me, did a pretty great job of amazing the audience with the frills and cool graphics of KDE. It was already 2:10 and our stomachs were growling. So we decided to take a lunch break and meet at 2:45 sharp.
The people were really punctual and almost all of them were back at 2:50 p.m after a trip to the canteen upstairs. I forgot to mention that there was a blizzard outside and we had a power cut. The lab was running of UPS which was crying out loud and could give up any moment. All the PCs were switched off and only the bare necessities were kept running- the projector and the laptop. Under such grave circumstances I got up to start a demo of IRC. Sunny Sharma was helping me out. The Airtel mobile office connection that we were using was damn slow and we were left with no other choice than as Airtel blocks IRC port. We explained them the concept of IRC, what are networks, what are channels and what are nicknames. Connecting to a network and joining a channel was also showed. Channels like #fedora, #fedora-india, #dgplug, #nitdgplug, ##linux on freenode were sown. Then came the very important thing about IRC ettiquette. Roshan Singh and Shakthi Kannan helped us demonstrate IRC live. Roshan helped establish a very good point that its not always geeky stuffs on IRC but we also have fun.
By this time a few electronics students had joined the crowd and they had come exclusively for the Fedora Electronics Lab session. So we began the FEL session without further delays. The UPS had already run out of life and I had to use the laptop to show them the various things we can do with FEL. No big screen this time. Almost the whole portfolio was demonstrated. I kept in mond the student's necessities and demonstrated only those tools in details which would be useful to them. gsim85, Ktechlab, octave, piklab, gresistor, drawtiming, ghdl were some of the tools. I had prepared some examples and used them to illustrate the functionalities. One student was also asked to try his hand on KTechlab and he did a pretty good job. KTechlab pretty much was the spotlight tool. The students were also give some tips on how to contribute to FEL , the fedora-electronic mailing list and some sites wich might come in handy. The power cut still loomed large and a concensus was reached to continue with the other sessions the next day.
I wasn't present the next day but as I heard that around 30 people attended the sessions, and learned a lot from the gcc, vim, shell commands sessions. As a toping to the ice cream, Subhodip gave a presentation on how to contribut to FOSS. That was pretty much it. All that remained was a follow up to this event which is already under planning and will probably be held in August. Till then the participants ave got enough to chew on.


  1. Hello thank you for the presentation about FEL, I've added a link to you blog post on:

  2. Nice Post~!!!. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .