The photos (more than 120) taken during the two-day FOSS Exhibit held on March 25-26, 2006 organized by ILUGC, and NRC-FOSS at Arunai Engineering College, Thiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu are available in my /gallery.

Arunai gateway

I would like to thank the management, faculty of Arunai Engineering College (AEC) for their wonderful support. My hearty congratulations to the students for their valiant efforts in this event.

Special thanks to our fellow ILUGC and NRC-FOSS folks, and Dr. Srinivasan for taking the initiative. We had a very good time :)

A brief summary of the events and the fun we had:

Day I : Saturday, March 25, 2006

Team I began on Saturday, March 25, 2006 morning by 0500 IST. I was picked up first, then Suman (Triplicane), Dr. Srinivasan (Saidapet), Aanjhan and Parthan (Kathibara junction), Raman and Bhaskar (Tambaram). Aanjhan came by bus from Bangalore to Chennai, the previous night, and joined Parthan in the morning.

We did break for breakfast. We got back in the Toyota Qualis after breakfast and were about to leave when we realized that Suman was not there. We found him in the hotel.

We arrived at around 0830 IST in the morning. After a formal inauguration, Raman began the day’s proceedings with introduction to FLOSS, followed by Fedora Core installation. Team 2a arrived and were introduced to the audience. They moved to the labs to train the students. After installation demo, I discussed about career opportunities with FLOSS. Meanwhile Team 2b, Asokan and Thyagurajan, had arrived and introduced themselves. Suman gave an introduction on Qt programming. We had lunch between 1300-1400.

Post-lunch session began with an excellent presentation by Asokan Pichai on shell scripting and the power of scripting. Thyagurajan gave a talk on GLAMP after Asokan’s talk. Tea break was at 1530 IST. Two folks from Sun Microsystems, Bangalore had come, Arindam and Moinak. So we had to give them some time for a session. They gave a demo of Opensolaris and wanted more developers for the same.

Aanjhan spoke on how students can contribute to FLOSS. At 1700 we moved to the labs to help the other teams who were training students. We finally left at 1900 to the hotel. When we reached the hotel, one of the students told us that we had left someone behind. Guess who? Suman. Nevertheless, he was dropped to the hotel.

We had good dinner, and in Room #203, Saravanan, Raman, Parthan and myself had good discussions about FLOSS and ILUGC activities. We hit the sack only at midnight.

Day II, Sunday, March 26, 2006

Many folks visited the temple in the morning, and then went to the college to help in the stalls. Preparations were in full-swing with students helping in setting up the stalls, putting up banners, etc. Team III arrived in the morning.

The auditorium session began around 1000. Audience were school students, college students, and the general public. I introduced them to FLOSS, showed the *nix desktop environment, software that they can use with GNU/Linux etc.

The chief guest, M. R. Rajagopalan, Director, C-DAC, Chennai inaugurated the stalls. They along with the college management and administration folks then came to the auditorium for a quick inauguration session. Lunch was at 1330. The stalls were bustling with activity.


We resumed sessions in the auditorium at 1500 and Moinak introduced folks on Bellenix and OpenSolaris. Arindam then began talking about core kernel hacking to newbies, and continued on and on and on till 1700, and most of them left for the stalls. I was happy they moved to the stalls as they were to close by 1700. We didn’t have time to play The.Code.linux or have a Q&A discussion session (interactive, like in day one).

There was a big thanks-giving at the end of the day to all volunteers, and we departed at 1800.

Overall, I was overwhelmed by the enthusiasm of the AEC students, and given a chance, I would go there again.