Tag Archives: unconferences

BarCampPune7 on 13th March: cloud computing, virtualization, security, and more

It is time for a Pune Barcamp again. This will be the 7th edition -BarCampPune7.Ā  And this time, we’re promised a number of interesting sessions. For example:

  • Anup Tapadia, Founder of TouchMagix will talk about the various awesome technologies and products they’re working on
  • Shivmohan Purohit on Cloud Computing
  • Nitish Dastane, Ashish Koche, Sanket Gajjam on Music information Retrieval Using Genetic Programming
  • Sandeep Bhanage on Virtualization
Barcamp@I2IT is on 13 March, Saturday. Anybody can attend, and its Free. A barcamp is a technology conference with a fluid agenda. Click on this picture to see all PuneTech posts about previous Barcamps
Barcamp@I2IT is on 13 March, Saturday. Anybody can attend, and it's Free. A barcamp is a technology conference with a fluid agenda. Click on this picture to see all PuneTech posts about previous Barcamps

And a whole bunch of other topics. And the beauty of barcamp is that many more topics will get added over the next few days.

But, really, you should go to speak about what you are working on. That is the whole point of barcamp.

If you don’t know what a barcamp is, then check out our post: What is a Barcamp, and why you should attend it (written just before the last barcamp)

In any case, here are details of this barcamp:

What: Barcamp@I2IT
When: Saturday, March 13, 9am-6pm.
Where: at I2IT International Institute of Information Technology
Registration and Fees: This event is free for all to attend. Anybody can attend. Register here.

Attend PHPCamp, 9th Jan: Because learning from humans is much better than Google

You might have noticed that PHP is taking over the world, unless you live in a cave, or work for a large company.

Click on the logo to see all PuneTech posts about PHPCamp
Click on the logo to see all PuneTech posts about PHPCamp

A lot of the world’s biggest websites are built using PHP – Facebook, Wikipedia, Digg, Flickr. And try to do anything interesting on the web today, and you’ll almost be forced to do at least part of it in PHP. For example, it is very likely that you’ll need to write a facebook application for whatever you are doing – and guess what language is best for that? Yes, PHP.

If you’re someone who’re only mainly familiar .NET or Java, now would be a good time to move out of the age of dinosaurs and come into modern times, and find out more about PHP. And what better forum to do that than PHPCamp, the biggest PHP conference in India (actually, the biggest (un)conference in India). Last year, Pune had the first PHPCamp. 1200+ people registered for it, and over 700 showed up.

It’s time for part 2. It’s time to see if we can put up a better show. PHPCamp 2 is happening this Saturday, 9th January, from 9am to 6pm, at SCDL (Symbiosis Center of Distance Learning), Model Colony. Please note: that road has three different Symbiosis Institutes, SCDL, SICSR, SIFL. People always get confused, go to the wrong one, and confuse the security folks by asking them about PHP (they probably think it’s a new drug that kids are abusing these days). Be smart, and land up at the right one at first try. (Note: unfortunately, another big event the IIT-Bombay Alumni Association, Pune Chapter’s Innovations 2010 conference is also happening on same day, so Pune techies will be forced to choose between the two.)

So why go to PHPCamp? Because whether you like it or not, whether you’ve planned it or not, there’s PHP in your future. And the best way to find out more about something is by interacting with people who are passionate about it. And that, you’ll find in abundance at PHPCamp. People who love PHP. For example, people like Amit Kumar who created PHPCamp.net, a news site about PHP written using PHP.

If you are already into PHP, then PHPCamp is your way to find out the latest buzz in PHP. What’s new with CodeIgniter (the framework that allows you to create websites very quickly using PHP)? Would you like to meet a Joomla Expert, someone who’se website shows up as the second hit on a google search for ‘Joomla Expert’? He’s a Punekar and will be there. How about someone who has created 50 drupal websites in the past year or so, including one in Chinese? He‘ll be there too. Have you heard of modx, the new, very fast, content management system written in PHP? No? Well, then you should certainly attend PHPCamp.

If you’re a student, especially a 2nd or 3rd year student of computer science, events like this are the best place to find interesting people in industry who are actually interested in working with bright and motivated students. In 4th year, when you’re desperate for projects, or jobs, it will be too late. Instead start attending events like PHPCamp, and you’ll form relationships that will be very useful for you later. Attend the talks, and if you liked the topic or the speaker, walk up to him/her and tell them that you are a student and would like to do a project with them. It does NOT matter that you know nothing right now. Low knowledge and high enthusiasm is any day better than the vice versa. It does not matter that you are just in 2nd or 3rd year. It does not matter what college you’re from, or what degree you’re pursuing. And no, contrary to widespread beliefs, industry people do not bite or eat students. So you don’t need to be afraid of talking to them. What’s the worst that can happen?

Did I mention that it is free? That’s right, anyone can register, and attend without having to pay anything. Just show up. Tell them, PuneTech sent you…

Why students should bunk classes to attend BarcampPune: projects, internships, recos

Pune has a Barcamp this weekend – on Saturday, 14th November, from 10am to 5pm, at SCIT, Hinjewadi (bus pick-up & drop off provided from SICSR, Model Colony). A barcamp is a get-together of passionate people from (mostly) the technology domain – including students, young professionals and old, grizzly industry veterans. To understand more, see the PuneTech post that explains what a barcamp is, and what to expect.

Click on the logo to see other PuneTech articles about barcamp
Click on the logo to see other PuneTech articles about barcamp

This post talks about why it is a great opportunity for students, and why they should make every effort to attend barcamp, even if it means skipping college lectures for a day. Here are the top reasons:

  • Finding great projects: Far too many student projects these days focus on ideas that were old 5 years ago, using technologies that are even older. To find be exposed to the latest trends in tecnologies, and to get ideas for very different and interesting projects, and to find passionate project guides, a barcamp is a great venue. This would be most useful for someone in their 3rd year. Now is the time to identify a good company to work with for a project. Far too many students start looking for projects in the beginning of their 4th year, and then scramble desperately as they’re unable to find sponsors. I would even encourage 2nd year students to do some mini-projects with the people they meet at barcamp. Nothing improves your resume as much as a “real” project with a “real” company. (Your course projects are all worthless.)
  • Challenging internships with lots of responsibility: Many founders of Pune’s small startups will be at barcamp, and they are always looking for interns to work on their projects. Startups, by their very definition, have lots of cutting edge work to do, and not enough people to do it. So an internship at a startup will certainly give you much more responsibility, and the ability to work on latest technologies, than an internship at a larger company. If you’re looking for an internship starting in December’09 or January’10, come to barcamp, listen to the various presentations, and just directly approach the speakers you liked. Tell them you want an internship. Don’t be shy.
  • Recommendation letters: I’ve realized that there are a number of students who want recommendation letters for their applications for MS in the US. Getting good recommendations means you have to do non-trivial work with people who matter, and who’ll be able to give you a good recommendation. Doing a B.E. project with someone is a poor way of getting a reco. Mainly because you need the reco in November, and by that time, you’ll have done so little work in your project that your guide will not be in a position to give a great recommendation. It would be much better to start working with them in your 3rd year. Even better if you start in 2nd year, so that you have a chance to do multiple projects with multiple people – more recos and more projects is better, right?
  • Learning! There is a lot to learn at barcamp, as people talk about the latest technologies, new domains, and new opportunities. If you are one of those weird and rare students who’s actually interested in learning new things, and meeting people who can guide you, then barcamp is the place for you. (And if you are one of these, then I would like to meet you!) What can you learn at barcamp? For example, I’ll be talking about why it is very important, especially in India, to integrate voice (phone) and SMS into your web-based software. And how to do it. Priyank will probably talk about developing rich internet applications using Adobe Flex. Shankar might talk about how to convert your ideas to commercially viable innovation. Whatever Dhananjay talks about will be very intersting and useful, though he hasn’t decided yet. There will be lots of other interesting topics – but because of the nature of barcamp, we can’t really know what those topics are until the morning of barcamp.

So, what do you need to do, to attend barcamp, and how to prepare for it?

  • Nothing! Barcamp is free. Anyone can attend. Just show up at the venue. If SCIT is too far for you, figure out how/where to catch the barcamp bus from SICSR, Model Colony.
  • Bring a notepad and pen, to note down the email addresses of people you would like to get in touch with later, for projects|internships|guidance|generally.
  • Don’t be shy. If you’re a good student, and willing to work sincerely, you are an extremely hot commodity, and everybody will be interested in you. You can approach anybody and tell them that you’re a student from X college, and you are interested in a project|internship|guidance. They’ll be happy to talk to you.
  • If you have a great idea for a project and are looking for a someone who can guide you, prepare a short talk about your idea, and then speak at the barcamp. Anybody can speak. Your talk will help you find a guide.

That’s it. Send a “proxy laga dena yaar” sms to your friend and head off to Hinjewadi.

If you know a student or students who can benefit from attending barcamp, please forward this mail to them.

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What is a BarCamp and why you should attend

Pune will have a “BarCamp” free conference this Saturday, 14th November, in SCIT Hinjewadi (bus pickup/dropoff provided from Model Colony). We believe that all technology professionals, and all computer science students should take this opportunity to get exposure to some of the most interesting people and technologies in Industry. To register (free) for barcamp, and for details of venue, timing etc, click here.

What is Barcamp?

Click on the logo to see all PuneTech articles about Barcamps in Pune

A Barcamp is a “democratic” conference. It is not a normal / traditional conference. A normal / traditional conference is usually put together by a committee of professors, or industry veterans, and the speakers are selected by the committee and invited to speak. Many of the speakers are “forced” upon the conference by the sponsors, and they end up droning about how cool their product is. The other talks tend to be boring “lectures” or “speeches” that you fall asleep in. Who can attend is also constrained by money (conferences fees are high), or by other means (only members may attend).

Anybody who’s been to a traditional conference will tell you that the tea-breaks and the corridor-conversations are the most interesting and important part of a conference. Think of a barcamp as an entire conference that consists only of tea-breaks and corridor-conversations. Well, it’s a little more structured than that – but not much … A barcamp is not a conference – it is an unconference. Anybody can attend a barcamp. Anybody can speak on any topic that they are passionate about. A whiteboard is put up in the morning with the available rooms and timeslots. People can write down their name and the title of their talk in any available slot. Based on this, the others can decide which talks they want to attend. That’s it. Repeat all day. Democracy.

You’ll wonder, if anybody can speak, how do we ensure quality of speakers and presentations? By the “law of two feet“. The audience in a Barcamp are encouraged to use their two feet and walk away from a talk if it turns out to be boring. People are encouraged to find and create subgroups interested in specific topics, find a room or a corridor, and start discussing – and they often do.

This ensures that everybody finds something interesting, and often something unexpected at a Barcamp. Maybe you might find the 15-year-old kid who knows more about Search-Engine-Optimization than all the “industry veterans” you’ve met. Maybe you’ll go there to learn new technology and instead find some really interesting NGO or other social work organization and join that. Maybe you’ll just land up there, not knowing what to expect, and end up finding not just your first job, but a great career. Maybe you have an idea for a company, but don’t know how to implement it, and you’ll find someone at Barcamp who’s willing to handle the technology for you.

I’m not just making all of that up. Each one of the sentences in the previous paragraph that started with “Maybe” is actually a real-life story that I’ve seen happen during some of the Barcamps in the last couple of years in Pune. And there are a lot more such stories.

Over the next few days, we’ll be writing short articles on why you should attend Barcamp. If you’re a student looking for projects, internships, or recos. Or you are an entrepreneur with an idea, but don’t know enough about technology to implement it. Or you’re an employee of a big company and are looking to hire some really smart people … or you’re looking to be hired by some really smart people. Or you’re a startup looking for collaboration, business development, or simply mentors/advisors.

Visit http://punetech.com/ over the next few days (or better still, subscribe to receive updates (free) either by email or via RSS) and we’ll tell you more about why you should attend Barcamp, and how to prepare for it.

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Call for Papers: ClubHack 2009 Information Security Conference

Click on logo for PuneTech wiki page on ClubHack
Click on logo for PuneTech wiki page on ClubHack

ClubHack is an initiative to bring security awareness to common people who use computers and internet in their daily life. It’s a member driven open community to make cyber security a common sense. The phenomenal growth of the Internet economy has led to a sharp increase in computer crimes and hacking incidents. ClubHack aims at making technology users aware of the risks associated with cyber transactions as well as the security measures.

ClubHack2009 is the third annual ClubHack conference and will revolve around technical presentations/demonstrations on topics from the world of Information Security. These presentations are expected to be of 40 minutes each. The schedule time for each presenter would be 50 minutes out of which 40 minutes are for the presentation & 10 for the question-answer sessions.

ClubHack is inviting submissions on technical topics or demonstrations that can be included in the conference. This is a list of suggested topics:

# Protocol / Application based vulnerability in networks and computers
# Firewall Evasion techniques
# Intrusion detection/prevention
# SPAM fighting
# Data Recovery and Incident Response
# Mobile Security (cellular technologies)
# Virus and Worms
# WLAN and Bluetooth Security
# Analysis of malicious code
# Cryptography and Cryptanalysis
# Computer forensics
# File system security
# Secure coding & code analysis
# Hardware modification
# Patch writing for vulnerabilities
# Open source hacking toolkit
# Cyber Crime & law

This is more of an indicative list, the papers submission can be on other topics also but have to be close to this & the theme of the event.

Important Dates
CFP Open: 15th August 2009
CFP Close: 15th October 2009

How to submit
Click Here

For more information about ClubHack see the PuneTech wiki page for ClubHack.

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BlogCampPune: Carpools, Buspool, What to Expect, Contacts, and other info

(Tarun Chandel, one of the organizers of BlogCampPune, sent out this mail to all those signed up to attend BlogCampPune 2, and it is being reproduced here for the benefit of those who haven’t yet registered – in the hope of convincing you that this is where you want to be on Saturday. And of course, if you’re still not sure of why to attend the blogcamp, check out our reasons why.)

I am sure you are looking forward to this Saturday with as much excitement as I am. Rains have arrived in Pune, it’s cool, it’s green, it’s beautiful and it’s ready to host all the bloggers for the BlogCamp Pune 2.

Just a quick reminder about some cool sections of our wiki that you can use to reach the Blogcamp in more fun way.

Carpools/Bikepools/Bus Sharing:

If you are coming on your bike or car please add your name in the Bikepool and Carpool section of our wiki: http://barcamp.org/BlogCampPune2 as that will help you to meet a fellow blogger even before the camp. Now there is a special treat for those who are coming from Mumbai. You can join the rest of Mumbai Bloggers who are traveling together in a bus. Please contact Mohnish, a Mumbai based blogger, through this link http://itwit.in/pbc or sms your name, email & no. to 9768512770 (only sms). Kindly note that the phone number is an SMS gateway only, your calls will not be answered. You will help this earth in staying bit more green and you can have some awesome pre-blogcamp-networking šŸ™‚


Please be there at 9:45am. We are going to start at 10am. If you are coming from any far flung corner of the city, start early. If you are coming from Mumbai start way too early else you are going to miss the fun part. If you wish to volunteer for helping us in setting up the venue, please be at SICSR at 8:30am.

I would suggest that you read the following post to get an idea about the BlogCamp Pune:

What to expect at the blogcamp pune.
If it is your first camp please read about the camp culture here.
Reasons to attend the Blogcamp Pune.
FAQs at our BlogCamp Pune wiki.

In case you have any questions or you need to know about the venue please give us a call.

For venue and directions: Abhishek – +91 9970983032
For Blogcamp related queries: Tarun – +91 9819997412

Event: Blogcamp Pune 2
Date: Saturday, June 27, 2009 from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (GMT+0530)
Location: SICSR (Symbiosis) Atur Centre, Gokhale Cross Road, Model Colony, Pune

See you on Saturday!

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Why you should attend BlogCampPune – 2


That is the one word that a BlogCamp can be captured in – passion. Bloggers, the serious ones, are very passionate about their blogging. And usually, the more successful blogs tend to be about a few specific topics that the blogger is very interested in, and puts a lot of time and effort into. And there is nothing like learning about a topic from somebody who has put years of effort into learning about and writing about that topic.

And you get about 20 such people in a blogcamp.

First, though, I need to clarify what a blog is, according to my definition. Far too many people thing of a blog as a “Dear Diary” where someone writes about every little episode of his or her life, and what they had for lunch, and how much they hate their boss, and how Pune’s traffic sucks. Those are not the blogs I am talking about. Those are pretty boring, and other than a few close friends and family of the blogger, nobody really reads those blogs.

I am talking about those who use blogging either to write about interesting insights they have related to their field of work, or who use it to explore an interesting hobby, or a topic that they are very interested in. In general, these are blogs by people who put some serious thought into what they write, and write things that their readers are interested in.

In the first category – those writing about topics from their work – are people like Dhananjay Nene, who writes long and insightful posts on software programming, design and architecture, some of which take is weeks if not months to think about and write. And for anybody interested in being great at software, it is a must read; and like Suvrat Kher, a geologist who writes on geology, evolution, and the changing earth. In the second category are people like SandyGautam who is really a software engineer, butĀ  writes the Mouse Trap, a blog about psychology and neuroscience, that is considered amongst one of the best science blogs in the world (those technically minded should note that his blog has a Google PageRank of 6). Or meetu, who in spite of being a CA and an MBA in finance, gave up the corporate life for writing about movies at wogma.com. Arun Prabhudesai is interested in the Indian Business scene, and his blog trak.in has over 5000 subscribers (and god knows how many more daily readers). And Tarun Chandel, who in addition to “regular blogging“, also posts his experiments in photography to his photoblog.

You’ll meet Rohit Khirapate who writes at Aamhi Marathi, Nitin Brahme and Vishal Gangawane who are reporters with Pune Mirror, Sahil Khan, who started The Tossed Salad, a life style magazine, while still a student, Debashish Chakrabarty, who amongst other things, is also very active in Hindi blogging circles, Nikhil Kaushal of Rang De, which is a micro-finance organization, trying to make a difference in the lives of poorest people for whom a loan of a few thousand rupees can make a difference, and people from OLPC Pune, who are trying to put laptops in the hands of poorest kids – the stated goal of the project being achieving one laptop per child.

Register, and attend. This will be your chance to find some of the most interesting people you’ve ever met. This will be your chance to possibly find people who share the same weird interests as you. This will be your chance to inspire a bunch of college kids, who will all be there because of their individual and varied interests. This will be your chance to be inspired to do something interesting and different with your life.

BlogCampPune2 – come to inspire and be inspired.

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Ruby Fun Day: A barcamp for Ruby developers – 21 Feb

What: Ruby Fun Day, an unconference style get-together for all those interested in Ruby
When: Saturday, 21st Feb, 10:30am-4:30pm
Where: Thoughtworks, GF-01, Tower C, Panchshil Tech Park, Yerwada, Pune
Registration and Fees: This event is free for all. Register here.


If you don’t know what Ruby is and why it is cool, see today’s PuneTech article: Why you need to learn Ruby and Rails.

The second edition of Ruby Fun Day will happen on Saturday, Feb 21 at Thoughtworks, Pune. The first edition which happened in Impetus Technologies, Noida was a great success.

Ruby is a very powerful OOP language, while at the same time fairly intuitive and easy to learn and understand. Rails is an MVC web framework where models, views, and controllers are fully integrated in a seamless fashion for the Ruby programming language. At the end of the day, Rails is all about helping you stay productive and happy while building awesome web applications.

Ruby Fun Day is anĀ unconference like Barcamp – a sort of on the fly, day long get together for ruby geeks to talk about geeky stuff and hang out. RubyFunDay 2 is going to be a pure Code Burning session. Every session would be full of live code demonstrations.

If you are based in Pune (or on a short trip to this city) and excited about Ruby or Ruby on Rails, this is a not-to-be-missed event! For more details visit the official event page atĀ  http://barcamp.org/RubyFunDay2

If you would like to present a session at this event, visit the event wiki atĀ  http://barcamp.org/RubyFunDay2 . The only constraint we have is, it should not be mere presentation, you will have to show the live code in the session.

(Thanks to Kapil Bhatia of Vinsol for this write-up of Ruby Fun Day.)


Sr No Topic Name
1. Basics of Ruby Programming Language ORĀ Advanced Metaprogramming with Ruby Sur
2. Integrating voice and text (sms) gateway with rails application Saurabh Purnaye
3. Test::Unit vs RSpec vs Expectations Aman + Dhaval
4. DSLs made easy with Ruby Sunit + Saager
5. What’s new in Rails Sur
7. REST full Rails Kumar Chavan(Bakal)
8. Importants of wrting “test cases” in ROR. Kumar Chavan(Bakal)
9 Web application testing using Watir Sai Venkat
10. Using Ruby to drive functional tests in Selenium Vijay Nyayapati
11. Ruby OOP: objects finally dethrone classes! Aman King
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What is barcamp, and why you should attend barcamp Pune (Nov 29)

What: Barcamp Pune 5

When: 29th November, all day

Where:Ā  SICSR, Model Colony. Here is theĀ map.

Registration and fees: Are you kidding? (Actually, register at the barcamp homepage.)

What is barcamp?

A barcamp is a conference that is the opposite of conference. Conferences are arranged by people in suits who have expert committees to decide agendas, and scheduled printed on glossy paper 3 months in advance. By contrast, a barcamp is organized (or unorganized, actually) by the T-shirt and jeans types. There is no agenda, no schedule. You just show up, and anybody can announce a talk, and preferably it shouldn’t be pre-prepared. For a more formal introduction to barcamp, check out the wikipedia entry for barcamp. (Encyclopedia Britannica doesn’t have an entry for barcamp!)

So anyway, a barcamp sounds like chaos, right? Surprisingly, it works very well. A barcamp is one of the best places to go to get a feel for the pulse of the tech community. You’ll meet interesting people and get introduced to interesting new technologies. Tarun Chandel, the grand old man of barcamps in Pune, said this after Barcamp Pune 4:

Let me go back around 20 years and take a look at the life of a developer. It was simpler than your life isn’t it? He just had to learn one or two languages and the career was rolling (you don’t believe me ask any of your bosses). Let me come back to you. I am sure you all know at-least 3 languages in which you can produce code for living. But how many of you are confident that you will be able to make a career like the guys did 20 years back?? The reality is that the innovation is happening at an unbelievable rate today, oh sorry I cant fool you guys you are insiders and as insiders we know that the splurge of various technologies, languages, platforms is because of the work that people have been doing for a long time. For an outsider there are too many things happening suddenly but for an insider this is not a surprise but a time when all the things are peeking and coming together perfectly. To be successful at this time we have to make sure that we are riding on the top of the tide. It is easier said than done. It takes a lot of time and effort to be just aware of all that is happening in the technology space. A developer needs to be aware of so many things at once and not only that he should be ready to work with newer things as early as they happen. It is not easy to keep pace with the speed of innovation and ever changing world of technology, how much time do you guys get out of your project work? The pressure is enormous to deliver, where is the time for other things?

Barcamp Pune or similar events are the place that gives you a present snapshot of the world around you (or let me put it this way gives you a heavy dose of all the technology related things that you missed or are still missing). There is a learning curve in all the places so is there a leaning curve in Barcamp Pune as well. You come here and get excited about new things technologies, you go back and whenever you get time, say the code repository server is down or your manger has fallen ill you can read in details about what you learned here. You come back for the next time and you attend a workshop on the same got to learn how to code or use the technology. You go back home and run some code get your hands dirty learn few new things. You again come here and this time you share with other campers what you have learned and they will share what they learned and you will improve yourself. Isn’t that great!!! I read somewhere that you retain 95% of what you share with others.

We have a very experienced Barcamp crowd in Pune but just for those who were there for the first time, let me repeat what I said at the starting session of the event that, the onus of getting best out of camp lies with you. There is a famous rule of Barcamp “Law of 2 feet” that is, you will have to use your 2 feet to walk to a place where you can learn, if you are not learning walk out of that place (no one will mind) and go to a place where you can learn or share. Meet as many people as you can and network and use this gathering of intelligent people wisely.

So mark your calendars, and head to SICSR for a Saturday of unorganized tech fun.

And check the PuneTech calendar for other exciting tech events that have been planned for you in the next few months (for example, I bet you did not know about the Conference on Advances in Usability Engineering?)