Notes from 2023 IndiaFoss
This is most probably the only even I have attended this year and it was fun as always. Met some cool people, had some interesting conversations with students in college and how they are promoting using Linux & BSD systems within the institution. Which I like a lot. I remember my time in college, where I would introduce people around me to linux and how they would all look so baffled as to what that was. My college was third tier, that means there were not a lot of good and interested kids around me in the classes. But I would always find people like me interested in tech, met some AI people, some blockchain people throughout my college. I digress,
This year's IndiaFoss started with the presenter talking about her
personal experience with the FOSS community and how it has been a
wonderful experience for her to lead the IndiaFoss movement just an
year in. All the things she got to learn and other things she helped
improve within the operations and tech side of things.
Then she moved on to talk about some of the technical debt that the IndiaFoss organization's tech platform had accumulated over time due to improper management and not having enough resources to do a look back and clear things out.
Then an engineer came on-stage to talk about exactly what the
organization has been upto in the last few months leading up to this
event. He mentioned they have been simplifying, open sourcing the code
for the main website and moving away from the frappe's closed
ecosystem for hosting that landing page, I guess. He also annouced
Foss Profile: This is kind of IndiaFoss' version of
read.cv or bento.me platforms. A collection of the digital footprint
of a person to maybe build a job profile. Which can be a great talent
pool considering this community has a lot of extremely excited and
Newsletters will be hosted on the new frappe platform. Listmonk is being used other ways unmentioned.
They are starting an ecommerce store for selling Merchandise by Jan 2024.
There were two tracks distributed in 2 auditoriums.
Session 1: Akash talks about Vyaakaran
He talks about his own programming language in 2021. Mentions compiler design course in his college. Lots of free time. A language to understand formal languages and automata theory. The course this was in is called Theory of Computation.
- What is Formal Language and Automata theory? -> A branch of CS that deals with abstract machines(Automata) that can understand a pattern defined by a set of rules ( language )
Real world applications
- Regular expressions, state machines
- Compilers, parsers
- No practical, visual tools for learning about automata and formal language. Theory can feel limiting.
- Small niche
- Can be extended
- Would be useful in learning compiler design
- What is Vyaakaran? a tool to visualize formal grammar, and state machines.
- Learn about context-free grammar.
- This could be a great REPL kinda tool while making a programming language.
- Built with typescript
- But learnt a lot, and helping a lot of other students to learn as well.
- Vue 3 for interactive editor
- Svelte - for static
- The new version could run Turing machine.
Things he learnt
- It’s ok to reinvent the wheel.
- People will stop you.
- When you build, you learn more about the underneath of how things work.
- Peeling a layer of abstraction.
- Take things like a challenge.
- Very rewarding. even if you fail, it still makes you a better engineer.
- A FOSS project is not just a collection of files. It’s an emotion of the developers.
- Vyaakaran is a manifestation that came out of learning.
DSLs are fun
- Domain specific languages
- Used by both programmers & non-programmers.
- Can be more powerful and easier than complex UI.
Vyaakaran has it’s own DSL
- Lexico ( search library with operators ) he made Vyaakaran open source on stage. Very well stage presence and work
Session 2: Arpit Tripathi talks about Private 5G Deployments using
Opensource 5g core networks
- He was a part of the first 5g usecase lab to be awarded.
- Yesterday Modi awarded 100 more labs.
- What was the motivation?
- General usage: WiFi
- Handover between two devices is better in 5g
- Security: WPA
- Uses AKA protocol
- Deployment: types
- Not every entity enterprise don’t have the resources to invest.
- Therefore there are certain deployment models like 3gpp.
- 1st: exclusively inside the premises.
- 2nd: cloud native core functions over cloud
- 3rd: the RAN is shared. Look out for RAN?
- 4th: enterprise slice model: mentioned 5g network slicing.
- Industry 4.0 goals.
- Time sensitive delivery
- Data analytics.
- Device to device connection
- Open source core networks: popular
- Open air, open5gcore, free5gc, magma, score, open5gs.
- These are network setup that we can deploy on our own.
- Using this is cheaper.
- Just invest in the hardwrare.
- Use cases that Arpit has been working with:
- 5G Test bed
- Financial literacy: they took an ATM van to rural areas to learn about banking transactions, atm usage.
- Securing the edge for banking.
- Untrusted access via N3IWF
Session 3: Ark Arjun talks about Mappng Mobility: Unveiling Kochi’s
Transport Landscape through OpenStreetMap
- This is happening in Kochi right now.
- Commercial project completely done by community
- What is mobility mapping?
- Visual representation of the movement of people, in and out of community.
- What does it tell? Economic, social, cultural, political, infrastructural status of an area.
- Why is it important? For now it’s only about public transport - commuters, monitoring of the effectiveness of the existing system.
- The big problem right now is the availability of data.
- Other problems - standardization, monitoring, multiple operators, no real time updates.
- Open Standards?
- A specific ontology, schema, or format used by the mobility industry in order to facilitate the consistent communication of information between devices.
- Should be free of cost.
- Not to be developed by entities with financial interest.
- Contains structures releases, versions, changelings.
- One of the standards is GTFS allows the public transit to publish their data such that understanding of the data, and proper handling is possible.
- The data is mapped from the devices installed in the vehicles.
- Mumbai and Pune has open data available. Bangalore is limited and not marked.
- Openstreetmap was founded in 2004, by Steve ? .
- Everyone should be able to use, edit the map information.
- What the team did?
- Existing data collection ( no gov data was available to start with.
- Field work - GPS trace collection
- Create relations in OSM for master routes
- Mapping all of these traces to the OSM
Session 4: - Women empowerment Panel
- It’s a panel with 4 very inspiring women at some very high positions in the industry.
- Was very good to hear them talk about their experiences.
- Making a conscious choice in your life is very integral.
- Women face very different issues, difficulties in their career and professional journeys.
- Talked about financial problems.
- Why exposure is very important.
- Professional experiences can help in personal life.
- The 4th person said something very important - a team player mentality is very important in a relationship.
- What really matters, is the way you interact with the people around you everyday. The small moments, the small rules, small mannerisms make a big difference.
Session 5: Atharva Upadhye talks about Creating Hardware through
open source ecosystem
- What they do? -
- Connected devices group
- Make custom electronic products.
- Hardware building blocks:
- Drawing circuits
- PCB layout
- PCB manufacturing + assembly
- Mechanical Box design
- OrCAD and Altium to draw circuits.
- PCB layout from drawing to a real physical form: which will be a breadboard first and a printed circuit board as a consumer product.
- Manufacturing + Assembly
- Mechanical box design is the enclosure of the structure. Solidworks / CATIA
- Why the speaker’s compony or corporates use proprietary software?
- One mistake: can be costly. Bcoz hardware doesn’t work like software, you can’t easily go back and edit and patch fix the code.
- Time to market is slow.
- Proprietary software offer comprehensive design flow. - (KITTYCAD)
- Availability of talent to work across different tools, making open source tools less attractive proposition.
- KiCad - opensource EDA tool ( electronic design automation )
- Advantages: Full design flow tools available under on hat ( from circuit design to PCB layout. )
- 95% of electronics engineers can’t do both circuits drawing and PCB layouts.
- Community support
- No proprietary software does this: 3D visualization supported by FOSS kicad.
- A lot of the hardware engineers copy/adopt from each other. Which is a good practice to cater confidence.
- Which actually turns out to be a good thing for open source.
- They are called SmartTerminal
- He showed a capability of their product running blender, games on total 8 screens doing different things.