Saturday Apr 18, 2009

OpenSolaris Apps of Steel Challenge!!!

SUN Microsystems has recently launched OpenSolaris Apps of Steel Challenge which a contest open to both students and professional developers where they have to develop a package to be ported to OpenSolaris using  ZFS, DTrace, SMF, and FMA etc. The best port will win a Toshiba OpenSolaris laptop!!

So what are you waiting for? Go make your application and claim a brand new laptop... :D

Click here for more details.

Manipal University student bags first prize in Code JavaFX coding contest!!! :P

I had never imagined in my dreams that hard work brings fruits so quickly. I am saying it because I believe today my efforts have become successful.

I feel extremely proud in telling the world that a student named Chinmay Garde, third year, CSE department from our college Manipal Institute of Technology has won the first prize in the Code JavaFX contest. His application called FxTweet has been highly appreciated by all in the JavaFx team too as the evaluators sent him a congratulatory note.

All this is the result of a two day JavaFX workshop and hands on session we conducted here on campus with two SUN engineers Raghu and Subrata who tirelessly taught us about JavaFX in great detail. It was attended by about 200 students from all four years of Btech, MCA and Masters students too.

We installed NetBeans 6.5 with JavaFX SDK in each and every one's laptops and then we did a day long hands on session. After that we also had a contest where students had to develop an application using JavaFX in an hour's time and the best three applications would win prizes like Laptop bag, pen drive and a cool JavaFX  T shirt. We got some very good applications and the competition was very close. A guy Ankur won the first prize for his game.

We also conducted a quiz and lucky draw where we gave out t shirts, key chains, book marks, pens etc as prizes.

I am thankful to Raghu, Subrata for their time and effort, Ganesh and Abhishek for their support and congratulations to Chinmay for his grand victory. 

Way to go!!! :P

I can see MIT coming up prominently on the global map of Open Source!!

Friday Apr 17, 2009

My experience at IEC, Bangalore

I had been waiting for this day since ages i.e. the day I would go to India Engineering Centre, SUN's office in Bangalore, India. And it finally arrived on 5th December when my winter vacations began. It was like a dream come true for me to work in  a place like IEC with all the superb infra structure, support and help from engineers, guidance available at hand. It was an amazing experience where I worked on a project called Student Management Software using NetBeans 6.5, GlassFish application server, MySql and JSP. It was a very good learning experience to learn directly from the makers of the technology.
Apart from the technical skills I gained over there, I also enjoyed a lot of outings with our team. Ganesh Sir took us out for lunch to a really nice restra called Oh Calcutta! where we had nice Bengali food. I worked on the CampusWorld newsletter of January edition along with Ganesh Sir, Rajesh, Abhishek and Tirthankar. It was great fun to do it and after long tireless efforts, we finally made the final draft of the newletter filled with news and reports from India.
You can view the newletter here...

Abhishek and me also made a video of new year wishes by the Campus Ambassador team and SUN engineers for all the Campus Ambassadors of the world.
You can view the video we made here.. 

Thursday Dec 18, 2008

XVM VirtualBox 2.1 released with a bang!!!!1

VirtualBox is like magic for most of the students in my college because whenever I talk about it, people are awestruck and look at me gaping, asking me “How the hell is it possible to have Linux running inside Windows or vice versa??!!”...

Much to their amazement, I show them the demo and they all immediately want to try it out.

VirtualBox indeed is something truly amazing which does not stop to amuse and surprise people. Most importantly its safe to use as you do not really have to install an new OS on raw machine, rather its just a file on your hard disk which you can use/modify/delete in a second's time.

Not just in my college, its extremely extremely popular all over the world, check the facts:

8 million downloads worldwide, 2.5 million registrations and 25,000 downloads a day!!!”

Woah.... that's a helluva number!!!!!.....

I am extremely pleased to tell you about the latest version of VirtualBox, released yesterday which xVM VirtualBox 2.1 (my room mate who works for xVM team here at IEC, Bangalore) couldnt be any happier, infact we celebrated with balloons and stuff at home... :D

The main features of this new release are:

1.New Accelerated 3D Graphics – wow!!!!!
2.Improved Network Performance – much needed change!
3.Storage Support (built-in iSCSI support to connect to storage systems ie Amber Road)

4.Mac OS X on Intel's Virtualization Technology (VT-x) –
5.VMware's and Microsoft's Virtualization Formats -
now this is super coooool!!!!!
ntel Core i7 processor
64-bit guest OS on 32-bit host platforms

So what are you waiting...... get the “new improved VirtualBox” here.....

Cheers!!!!!! :D :D

Tuesday Dec 02, 2008

JavaFX version 1.0 Release!!!!

JavaFx 1.0 was launched yesterday with a big bang. This is one of the most revolutionary technologies developed by Sun Microsystems and is an extremely powerful tool for developing rich client applications and by rich I mean really super rich!! :D You have to see it to believe it!!....

JavaFX combines the best capabilities of the Java platform with comprehensive, immersive media functionality into an intuitive and comprehensive, one-stop development environment.

So here are some pointers about what JavaFx is really about:

  • Provides a unified development and deployment model for building rich client applications
  • Enables you to easily integrate audio and video, graphics, rich text, and Web services
  • Allows creative developers to program in a visual context
  • Provides tools to build and deliver rich Internet applications for desktop, mobile, TV, and other consumer platforms
  • Enables unprecedented collaboration between designers and developers
  • Allows designers and Java developers to easily leverage the best of today's advanced enterprise software and rich Internet applications.
  • JavaFX Script, a high-performance declarative scripting language, enables you to quickly and easily develop rich Internet applications and next-generation services for desktops, browsers, mobile devices, set-top boxes, and, over time, other consumer platforms.
  • Applications can combine audio/video and 2D graphics with 3D perspective transform (true 3D graphics coming soon) and rich text, with compelling visual effects and transformations.
  You can download JavaFX SDK and view videos at

Thursday Nov 27, 2008

NetBeans IDE 6.5 release

The much awaited NetBeans IDE 6.5 release finally was launched before the whole world on the 20th November, 2008. I was on top of the world this day as I had been waiting for it since a very long time. I was using NetBeans 6.5 Beta version for one of my projects and I loved it from the first day itself.
Now let me tell you about the new features in NetBeans 6.5 :

\* PHP support with code completion, Xdebug and web service features.
\* JavaFX 1.1 supports animation, graphics and media codecs for rich content application development for desktop and mobile devices.
\* New Support for Groovy and Grails.
\* Improved JavaScript, AJAX and Ruby support.
\* Automatic Compile and Deploy on Save for Java and Java EE applications.
\* Improved database support: SQL history, SQL completion, and results viewing and editing improvements.
\* Improved Java ME support for Data Binding, SVG and Custom Component creation.
\* GUI Builder: Support for Nimbus and simple class names.
\* JUnit: single test method support.
\* Debugger: Redesign of Step into feature.

Isn't it super cool??
What are you waiting for then? Download it here.....

Saturday Nov 15, 2008

Code For Freedom Contest

I planned out this workshop after taking feedback from everyone from in my OSUM club. The date we finally decided upon was just one week before our examinations. We then did online registrations for participants via email. In a couple of days we got around sixty registrations. Finally on the day of the workshop, the venue I had booked was being used for some other purpose. So, I took permission to use another auditorium as the venue and sent out SMS messages to all the participants about the venue change. After settling down at the new venue, I informed the participants about the contest, its rules and regulations, SUN technologies they can use, its benefit and finally the grand prizes.

I was happy to see the response of the students who were all very enthusiastic about participating in the contest. I asked them to register for it and clarified their doubts regarding it with the help of Tirthankar Das, OHAC engineer who is one of the coordinators of the contest.

I also asked all the participants to join OSUM and encourage their friends to do the same too. I told them about the benefits of joining it and what an useful and fun website it is.

Later on we also discussed ideas for projects to be submitted in the contest. I was extremely satisfied with the successful completion of the workshop.

Wednesday Oct 08, 2008

Love at First Boot and SFD festivities at Manipal........ :D

The very first time I heard about Software Freedom Day was by Gary during our induction program in Bangalore. Ever since then I was all excited and had started planning things for it to involve as many students as possible and make them a part of what I think is the revolutionary “Open Source Revolution”.... I am emphasizing on the word revolutionary a lot because I feel its certainly like a tide of new technology which will overturn the existing one and in a big, big, big way!!!. The bubble is growing and growing every day, every moment, every second.....
Anyways in my dreams of evangelizing Open source like never before, I completely forgot to take into account, the monthly exams which we have in our college whose dates coincided with SFD and all my dreams came crashing down like a sand castle..... But then I thought why should I not do it a week ahead and again with a new ray of hope, I called up Rajesh and Ganesh who gave me a thumbs up to go on...Then another miracle happened, while I was talking to Rajesh one day over the phone, Abhishek seemed to be around and I asked him if he would like to come to our college and give a lecture. The extremely enthusiastic and passionate Abhishek at once said that he would check out his project plan and let me know. So in a couple of days, I got a mail from him that he would be ready to come here at a cost that I would have to introduce him to all my beautiful female friends and juniors. Just kidding Uncle!!!... :D
Then began the usual work of getting posters designed,printed, putting them up, setting up info
desks at strategic places all across the campus, we ( my volunteers and me) managed to get a huge registration list, so much so that we stopped registrations and announced that seats will be on a first come first serve basis only....
Finally on a lazy Saturday afternoon, with our Lecture hall completely full i.e. With 200 participants (about which I was a bit sceptic as Saturdays in Manipal are synonymous to sleeping and partying only), we began with a talk on “Open Source technologies and You” where participants had a gala time and were laughing their heads off with Abhishek's interesting anecdotes. Then we did a hands on and demo session on NetBeans where we installed NetBeans on each and everyone's laptops and then followed it up with some simple programs which everyone would follow...Thus the first day of the two-day SFD celebration got over with the hall full to its brim till the last minute.....
The next day again we all met at the same venue and in the first half we did Open Solaris installations in VirtualBox in everyone's laptops, and it was such an overwhelming scene. I had tears in my eyes looking at the familiar dark blue Open Solaris desktops of about 215 laptops all at once.....
After lunch, we had a PHP and MySQL demo session where Abhishek told us about the basics of Internet, HTTP and then took us through an interesting journey of creating cool websites using the deadly duo PHP and MySQL. After that, Abhishek did the most comical intonation of “SHIFT HAPPENS!!!” and everyone present there was rolling with laughter. Then we ended the program with “Three cheers for SFD” and an extremely generous and warm round of applause for the king of the show i.e. Our UNCLE............
Never before did the MIT junta enjoy a technical seminar so much, this was evident in the fact that not one person in the whole audience wrote a single negative comment about anything in the feedback sheets we distributed at the end of the event, instead showed a lot of positive interest in Open Source technologies and said that they were willing to know more about them in detail, in future....
I would rate the event as 10/10 and I would give all the credit to Abhishek for his sheer excellence in the way he interacts with the crowd, keeps them hooked and interested and makes all of them fall in love with him literally( a few girls actually left their phone numbers on the feedback sheets for him, not that he was complaining!!! and a couple of guys too....lolz...... :D).....Thank You Uncle for all the pains you took to make this event an out and out success.......
I would like to heartily thank Gary for infusing the spirit of Software Freedom Day in us, giving us useful tips and suggestions all the time and personally dealing with all our little problems...
I would also like to thank Ganesh and Rajesh for being so supportive and encouraging at all times and being there, only a phone call or email away.....
I hope as a CA, I will be able to contribute in my little way in making the Open Source revolution bubble big till it encompasses every student living under the SUN (no puns intended!!!!) ...... Cheers!!!!!!! :P


Tuesday Sep 02, 2008

Talk on project Glassfish (turn out = 482 people) & what followed next!! :P

After a hectic and exhausting weekend, the whole yesternight I was not able to sleep as I was so damn anxious about today's event i.e. a talk on Project Glassfish By Sudhir Prabhu, who also happens to be an alumni of our college now working with Sun.  At last when I was done with running from one end of the college to other, getting permissions, putting up posters, mailing existing Sun club members etc  about the event, I was still apprehensive about the turn-out becasue Glassfish is a new technology and there is little awareness about it in our college.

Contrary to my expectations, students started thronging the Library Auditorium, the venue for the event, at a great pace and in a few minutes there were no empty seats, infact we had to put up extra chairs all around the place and even then people kept coming, so much so that we had to send people back. Some people even volunteered to sit on the floor. There were a total of 482 students, HODs and faculties from four departments and the associate director ( phew!!!!! :P )attending the talk when we did a head count and that is not counting people who had gone back.

Mr.Sudhir gave a very interesting and enlightening talk about Glassfish, its various versions, clusters and finally gave us the links and information of the ongoing projects etc where students can participate and contribute. I was amazed to see people listening to him with rapt attention (despite the cool AC, comfy chairs = perfect setup for a nap :D ) and asking alot of questions both during and after the talk. I gave a small talk about the Sun club we have in our college and how students would be benefitted by being a member of it.

We also distributed Open Solaris starter kits and Netbeans Cds to interested students and I also sent out registration forms for the Sun Club membership ( I had to get it photcopied thrice as the number of students was alot more than my expectations!!! :P ) but I now have all these new members for my club, so I am not complaining. At the end of the talk, I was the happiest person around and thanked everyone for attending the talk, participating and interacting with so much enthusiasm, thus making it a GRAND SUCCESS!!!!!! :P

This whole experience gave me so much confidence and a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that I cant put it down in words. Thanks alot Sun for giving me this wonderful opportunity to work as a Campus Ambassador, organise these wonderful events, interact with my fellow college mates, gain so much insight and I have to say it has changed my life forever. I am on a high!!!!!!!!!.......CHEERS!!!!! :D :P




Vasudha Amrit


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