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Event report: FUDCon APAC 2015, Pune

15 Jul 2015

I’m writing a blog post after very long. Somewhere between the last post and this one, I’ve graduated and started working for Mesitis Capital as the Product Designer. On the open source community front, I haven’t programmed much recently, but I have been mentoring a couple of students over this year’s GSoC. Two weeks ago, I was at FUDCon in Pune. Here’s a quick summary.

Day 0 - Arrival Day

For the first evening, it was mostly just people arriving and us meeting up over dinner at Kushal’s place. I really enjoyed meeting Suchakra after long - we had a quick discussion around our AskFedora student Anuradha, since mid-term evaluations were around the corner. I met Harish and Danishka who live in Singapore - they shared with me tips around housing, transport, expenses, hackerspaces - all the things I’ll need when I move later this year.

I had a workshop the next day, so I wanted to sleep “early”, but it got pretty late as usual ;-)

Day 1 - First Workshop Day

FUDCon at MITCOE - picture stolen from Suchakra's blog

The morning was mostly meeting folks who arrived that day - Gnokii, Tuan and the rest. Come afternoon, and it was time for my workshop on building responsive front end. This was my first attempt doing few things - conducting a session without slides, programming stuff on the stage, the topic itself - and I think a lot of those choices were great because I ended up heavily modifying what I had wanted to show. I do regret that I couldn’t get around to teaching the stuff I really wanted to, but given a beginner audience, I’m happy they picked up some key ideas. A couple of them also emailed me after the event asking for further resources, so it does look like it was handy.

In the evening, we had a sort of mini FUDPub - most of us speakers & volunteers staying at the hotel went to a nearby Pub. Gnokii, Somvandda, Yogi, Danishka and I got on a table and we were discussing breweries and food - pretty interesting stuff. It turns out Charul and Sinny were neighbors - so Suchakra and I ended up chatting about work, projects, college life, etc - again sleeping quite late.

Day 2 - Meeting students

I didn’t have any sessions scheduled for the second day, so I took the opportunity to hang out with students. I learned that many students from Amrita University, Kollam were in town, so we headed up for lunch together, discussing projects and scope for them to contribute to some FOSS projects. Later during the day, some students from MITCOE spent quite some time with me; we talked about how the Fedora Project is organized, who does what, and how one gets into areas that interests them. There were two students interesting in contributing to the Design team, so I explained them about various things Design team does, the people involved, tools they use, and encouraged them to attend the workshops from the Design track on the final day.

In the evening, we had the social event at bluO in Phoenix MarketCity, a large shopping complex. There was bowling organized, great food, and a very energetic environment.

Day 3 - Final Day

I had an early joint workshop session on how Git works with Mayur. Once again, catering to the audience, we decided to focus on what it is, and how to fiddle with it. While Mayur took the stage and maintained an overall flow around the session, I went around looking at people’s screens and ensuring everyone was doing the right thing. There were lots of questions popping around Git server centric infrastructure - it was fun answering them. There were also a couple of people who weren’t new to Git but didn’t like merge conflicts, so we sat down and helped them around it.

Harish soon followed with a key signing party. I’m happy I attended it - it was great refresher material and I got some concepts cleared in my head around the whole GPG process. As it always is the case, I learn better by doing, so I’ll try to teach it to somebody and hopefully become more clear that way.

For the night, we had dinner at the hotel - once again, it was fun recommending Indian dishes to my non local friends, and it does look like they enjoyed it.

Overall, amazing time at my first FUDCon. I look forward to it next year! :-)

Picture credits: Suchakra’s blog at http://suchakra.wordpress.com