Mini-DebConf in India - Report
The Mini Debconf Pune is the latest in a series of conferences
organised by the Indian Debian Community. The first Debian Conference
was held at IIIT-Bangalore in 2005 (followd by conferences in
Bangalore in 2006,2007,2009 along the sidelines of FOSS.IN) and Mini
Debconf Pune is the latest in the series of conferences held by the
Debian India Community.
The conference was inaugurated by Dr. M Sasikumar, Director, Corporate
R&D, CDAC India, who spoke about Free and Open Source Software and
BOSS (Bharat Operating System Solutions), which is a Debian derivative
that CDAC has been developing. Praveen Arimbrathodiyil, our newest
Debian Maintainer, and Onkar Shinde guided an interactive session
introducing Debian to the participants. Kartik Mistry's informative
session covered the aspects of contributing to Debian and the
processes involved. Vikram Vincent enlightened the audience on the
localisation process and its effect in bridging the digital divide.
The highlight of the afternoon session was the Debian packaging
workshop mentored by Kartik Mistry (our Debian developer), Onkar
Shinde and Praveen Arimbrathodiyil.
Day 2 started at 8am with a continuation of Debian packaging. Vikram
Vincent traced the history of knowledge development and percolation in
society through various anecdotes and the necessity of technology in
education in his talk on Debian in Education. Raghavendra Selvan's
insight into the teacher training workshops and experience in
Karnataka gave some focus on what needed to be done from the grass
root levels and at the level of the government.
A discussion between the BOSS-CDAC team and the Debian enthusiasts
focused on how changes made in the BOSS distribution could be
contributed back upstream into Debian,GNOME, etc as patches, bug
reports being made public and training the CDAC team on the FOSS model
of software development.
Both days saw huge participant numbers with the first day at around
150 and the second around 80. The organising team did a good job
making the entire event run smoothly and successfully. Overall, the
participants enjoyed the sessions and expressed interest in organising
and being part of such sessions in the future.
-- Vikram Vincent