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[DS-discuss]minutes of the meeting - 22nd, March, 2003

From: Suraj Kumar
Subject: [DS-discuss]minutes of the meeting - 22nd, March, 2003
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2003 17:19:20 +0530

PS: Somehow  this mail  didn't reach this  mailing list when  I posted
this  msg on  the sunday.  It bounced  back only  today and  hence I'm
reposting this stuff. Hope this gets through.



          Minutes of the address@hidden meeting - 22nd March, 2003

After  nearly two months  address@hidden met.   Not merely  Mr.Raman and
Suraj attended  this meet.  :)  There were 6  people in total  (in the
order of appearance):

        1. Mr.Raman
        2. Mr.Baskar
        3. Suraj
        4. Mr.Bharathi
        5. Karra
        6. Mohanakrishnan

Of these two are new to  the meetings. One, Mr.Baskar, happens to work
at LocoWorks and Mr.Bharathi, the infamous IndLinux man. :)

The following were discussed:

1. INFITT and what address@hidden can do regarding this
2. Sankara college demo
3. random M$ stuff (sponsored by Mohan)

1. INFITT and address@hidden

INFITT  is   a  non-profit  Tamil   Computing  group  which   aims  at
popularising computing in tamil. Although  Free Software is not at the
core of INFITT's  mind, INFITT, beign a non-profit,  would be happy to
use   Free    Software   just   because   Free    Software   is   also
cost-effective. INFITT wants a team of volunteers in TamilNadu to help
it teach  tamil computing  to the "masses".   although on  the broader
sense, INFITT refers  to the general junta as  the masses, the picture
narrows down to 'students' when it is presented to address@hidden 

With not a very clear  picture about what "exactly" INFITT wants[1] it
was decided  that we  would follow up  with Mr.Venkat and  arrange for
meeting  Prof.AnanthaKrishnan[2]; get  a more  clearer picture  of the
requirements and *then* decide what we can do. (see also [3])

2. sankara college demo

Mohan,  the person-in-charge  of the  sankara college  demo, explained
that we can  all be "rest assured" that this demo  will be through. :)
The principal  of sankara, it seems,  wouldn't be happy  with just one
session of talks. [s]he wants a series of lectures, possibly technical
ones,  which help  their students  in some  aspect.  also  [s]he wants
address@hidden to setup/administer their college network[4]. 

3. random M$ stuff

Mohan  explained how  M$ is  trying to  get ppl  off Free  Software by
offering mind-blowing offers to educational institutions, like his own
college. It seems  M$ offers all software for  Rs.40000/- and lets the
students  also take  a  copy  of it  and  use it  in  their homes  for
gratis. Also M$ promises  gratis software updates, gratis this, gratis
that  (and this  'this and  that' includes  pizza and  $COLA  too). in
return M$  demands all the  software in a  given 'blast radius'  to be
only M$ software and not any third party software, which means all our
efforts will be in vain if  a college decides to shell out 40000/- for
the sake of buying things for gratis. 

...   and  the watchmen  started  chasing  the  junta that  lurked  in
GMandapam, address@hidden  being no  exceptions to it,  had to  wind up.
Bharathi revealed  that tamil-mode was already added  to GNU Emacs[5a]
by the IndLinux team.  ([5b]) 

... and a convoy of Amma's cars forced us to find a quick and peaceful
way of getting back home. :)


[1]  Although  Mr.Venkat, in  his  original  post[1-1], explains  that
INFITT wants to get a group  of teachers who teach to teachers, INFITT
staff and students  about localised Free Software on  a regular basis,
we weren't  sure if INFITT wants  only a series  of technical lectures
about Free Software  OR was it to do with other  things about which we
"may" not have the domain knowledge. secondly there are only a handful
of volunteers  of whom very little  do tamil computing.   If we commit
ourselves, will we be able to keep up with the requirements? 

    [1-1] -

[2] - Vice Chancellor, Anna University.

[3] Initially it seemed as  though getting along with INFITT may stray
us  away from  our goal  - To  bring Free  Software developers  to the
community by teaching them the  necessary values and techniques at the
right age. Will we be, in any way, reaching our goal by taking up this
INFIT work? While everybody would be  glad to help INFITT, the lack of
necessary man power  is for sure a hurdle  to go a bit out  of the way
and help other efforts in progress.

[4] at the  end of the meeting, people "advised"  mohan that he should
tell  the college  that address@hidden  would be  glad to  help *create*
sysadmins who can manage their networks and that we may not be able to
administer their network.

[5a]  it seems, the  GNU Emacs  tamil-mode isn't  into the  main Emacs
source  tree... Karra was  suggesting that  this can  be done  so that
there can be a good deal of recognition for the IndLinux project.

[5b] too nice.. too nice..  suraj was just thinking of picking up some
funda on localization and mule and write a tamil-mode for GNU Emacs...
he can do other work now... :)

| A mind in fear holds no fortress dear; complacent                |
| indifference never finds goodness in a chance                    |
| (guarding against complacency - 4), Thirukkural                  |

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