The five of us from FSMK,little did we anticipate that this journey to NIT-K to propagate Swatantra Software would turn out to be one of the most memorable ones,both in context of purpose and pleasure perspectives….
Karthikeyan,Naveen,Prabodh,Vishal and myself were the team from FSMK visting NIT-K,Surathkal…. An aesthetically soothing journey,and a much better experience there at their campus in celebrating Software Freedom….
The sessions scheduled at 9.30 am on the 19th of September could be started only by 11.00am….Thanks to the delay of the train..Although the session was delayed,we luckily got exposed to an exquisite and sublime vista of the breathtaking Western Coast bathed in post monsoon showers(Hingaaru Male !!!),making it a divine experience to all of us…..
The session was in one of the seminar halls of NIT-K . To our pleasant surprise and awe,the NIT-K students released a customised GNU/Linux Distro compiled,keeping a technical student in mind. It was named ENGINUX,and was basically UBUNTU 9.04 with lots of technical tools adequate for a technical student…
From our side,Naveen started the Swatantra Software Philosophy,briefing the audience about the “Free Software”,the disambiguation between “free as in freedom” and “free as in freebie”…He also touched upon other essential basics for a Open Source fan to become a Free Software activist….His part of the session lasted for about 40 minutes…
Karthikeyan,he spoke about the role of FSMK in the Free Software context of Karnataka….Emphasizing on the formation of GLUGS in institutions,and empowering the communities by activating smaller sections of the same into adopting Swatantra Software….
An ad hoc interaction with the students for an SFD give-away T shirt was conducted,wherein we asked the students to think of pragmatic means of making Swatantra Software reach the society at all tiers… And, after initial hesitation we received around 10 valuable suggestions,ranging from incorporating Free Software into schooling,to installing Free Software with newly purchased hardware,and also that the Govt.should step in and endorse Free Software setting an example for the society to follow…As, only one T shirt was to be given,we decided to acknowledge a suggestion made by a student to reach the community by imbibing the movement with the community by personal interactions,ultimately leading to a sustained system of Free Software Communities….
After this session,Karthik demonstrated gnokii– a tool used to send sms from the terminal through a GSM network. Prabodh shared his experience of being involved in a project at CMRIT with his students using gnokii.
We have instigated 4 of the active students(the prospective core team), to revive their free software activities by forming a GLUG. The overall response from them has been more than satisfactory and very encouraging.We are hopeful of an active GLUG at NIT-K very soon…
From, there on it was yet another exhilarating experience at the Surathkal beach,with some time spent on top of the light house…Finally, a race to reach the train and we got it at the nick of time….
This trip has been an amazing experience to all volunteers invlolved,we’ve learnt like in every session something more,to better our activities…. Thanks for the support at FSMK 🙂