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first day of fossconf09 - in Madurai this time. About 20 stalls demoing student projects in FOSS. Crowd about 700 (not counting the 100 or so speakers and volunteers). Mainly from outside TCE. Included a lot of school students and teachers. Although one is supposed to be above such things, it is nice to talk to a packed hall at times. There were internet problems so I could not really do justice to my talk, but I got one sure convert and a couple of other possibles. OK so about 100 people have now heard of OSM, but what about the other 900 who were there? Next time, no talk - going to have a demo stall. There are going to be prizes too - we collected 12K for the prizes in a couple of hours on the ILUGC mailing list! We had busloads of delegates from Salem, Vellore, Tirunelveli and a good gang from Chennai. More are expected on the next two days being a weekend. Fossconf is a first in the sense that the original idea of a roving conference, set in a different city each time has finally happened. There were a lot of bids by colleges to hold this - most of them with solid backing of their managements. I think PLUG people should learn from this. Gnunify attendance was much less this year - partially because Symbiosis is an elite institution which means that participation from those students would be minimal. The should try to rotate it among other colleges. I remember trying to convince the Delhi guys to hold freed.in in Ghaziabad where there is an engineering college with a good foss community. Unfortunately those guys would rather have the prestige of holding an event in JNU - even if no one attends it - than in some rural area.

This is *my* blog, so I can brag a bit. The idea of having a fossconf rotating around the cities of Tamilnadu was my idea, and am thrilled that it has taken off. This time I was not happy with the short notice and felt that it was better held in September. Also I just did not have the time to participate too much in the organisation. But it was a good thing. Fossconf Madurai is very different from fossconf Chennai, the management is in totally different hands. Coolness. More people have got experience now. And, anyway, if I can poke the Coimbatore/Salem gang, we could also have one more fossconf in September/October.

And, while bragging, I find another term I coined - 'fsck.in' is now accepted idiom to describe how not to conduct a foss conference.

now all we need is for fossconf and fsck.in to get into wikipedia and I will be famous.

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lol! less well known idioms have made it into wiki.

I'm so glad I learned what FOSS was or I never would have understood this entry.

the booth sounds like a good idea. There is a conference they have here once a year, and what they do is have the talks given after the booths are taken down for the day, and then most of the people who have booths attend (and give) the lectures. Different prizes are awarded for having the best booth, best presentation, best lecture, etc... Maybe they could do it like that next time??

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