The Cruise is on………….

Life… Technology… Passion…

Archive for December, 2006

The Cruise is on…

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 8, 2006

Hiya everyone… The Cruisemaniac’s blog has moved on from wordpress hosted servers onto my private space on a bluehost.com server.  Kinda felt like the need to my own domain and webspace so that I would perhaps tryout some of my crazy ideas that I keep getting now and then… Lets see how my investment returns to me!!! 😀  Please make note of the new blog URL: http://www.thecruisemaniac.com/blog.

The Cruise is on…

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RadioVerve – Independent Internet Radio

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 3, 2006

Speaker: Shreyas. – RadioVeRVe

Started by 3 guys who liked the local college rock songs.  THey collected mp3’s from all the bands around the country.  But this dint click… So they went on to create infinity radio and then turned into radioverve which is 24×7 and broadcasts indian music.  They recorded shows, scanned them and streamed them on the net.

Point A of the session: They were not web 2.0.

Point B of the session: The intention is to give musicians a platform to express themselves through their music.

They have about 10000 customers per month.  There are many rock bands which now play hindi coz they dont have the visible audience to listen to their songs.  Radioverve helps them by giving their music over the net and thus reaching a larger audience.

The point is to build a community around independent indian music.  They have plans to publish a channel which plays folk music that is not publicly popularised.  This is going online and would perhaps make the lives of the musicians their much needed limelight and fame.  This would be done through recordings already done and get it from sourcers who have taken the trouble of recording the music.

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Mapunity – Handling Bangalore Traffic

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 3, 2006

Speaker: Mr. Pradeep – www.mapunity.org

No vector maps for India unlike the US and UK.  Google API has been hacked and their own tiles has been used over the Google Map.  They have their own road maps with places also.  The data in the database is from the Government.  They use AJAX + JSON.

Location finding happens using AJAX.  Google suggest is used in the location finder.  Uses PGDjikstra Weighted shortest path algorithm to do route finder.

Sorry…. Lost track coz of the discussions… I got in my mind though…. and they got their site!!! 😀

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KOMRAD – Compact Open Mobile Reference Architecture and Design

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 3, 2006

Speaker: Mr. Rajiv Poddar, Tantra Tele.

What is KOMRAD?

  • Blueprint for mobile phones
  • Reference Design for Mobile Pones
  • Software and Hardware
  • Derived completely out of Open Source Software and Open Hardware
  • Commercial Off the Shelf Solutions – To fill in the gaps in the Opensource hardware and software

Open Source Hardware:The files required for the hardware – design and stuff is available under GPL on the net.

Why is it needed?

  • 80% of the worlds population are covered by a wireless network
  • But, only 25% have a mobile phone
  • Multiple barriers to entry exist here
    • Cost of the handset
    • Total cost of Ownership

The providers of a network camp on ARPU – Avg. Revenue Per Unit.  But in the rural areas where the talk values are less, the cost of ownership is high.

The GSM association has noticed that the major markets is Asia, and Africa.  And India falls on the top of the list of booming markets.  So, the GSM Association is talking to operators to reduce the ARPU.  This would drive penetration into the rural markets.

The expectation in India is for a user to spend Rs. 450 per month.  Which is the lowest in the world and the GSM association is trying to get the ARPU values still lower.

How does KOMRAD help?

  • It focuses on the technical barrier to entry into handset market
  • Makes mobile phone as easy to assemble as a computer
  • Enables communities to build their own solution
  • Disrupts the value chain of the mobile phone market

Their target is to get the mobile (Chips, LCD, Keypad, Plastics, RF components, software) is around 30$.  The mobile phone may not look like the Nokia’s and Sony Ericsson’s we have, it might be designed as a community result to best suit the needs of a community…  For eg, the phones designed for a rural area could be designed with bigger keypads and no lcd’s!.

The fundamental open source initiative would help disrupt the actual distribution and business channels of the big guns…

Goals of KOMRAD

  • Cheap
  • Easily available components
  • Open Architecture
  • No closed or proprietary drivers

The next slide spoke of the architecture.  The micro kernel on the architecture is called L4.  The peripherals will be connected on an l4 based device driver family.  The protocol stack is a certified GSM stack.  There is a cross compiler which will convert any code written in C into L4 compatible code….

Features

  • Kernel is ~ 100kb (L4 Pistachio Embedded)
  • NCurses based MMI framework
  • GSM protocol stack
  • GNU Radio Baseband + RF
  • Blackfin applications processor

Status

  • Basic Architecture completed
  • MMI Framework
  • Kernel
  • GNU Radio
  • Team of 3 volunteers

TODO

  • Code, code and code 😀 – I like this part!!!
  • Release Alpha
  • Combine two boards into a single board
  • Replace FPGA with GSM baseband and RF
  • Add more volunteers to the project – Mee like this part too 😀

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YBangalore – Aashish Solanki

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 3, 2006

Designer for www.yulop.com and www.ybangalore.com 

The concept is to get community networking to make your life simpler.  The site helps you find people who have information to help those who dont.  It helps you in looking at things and take help for things like how to pay your taxes, find houses, how to get issues resolved when you dont know where to go and whom to approach…

It’s a platform for all bangaloreans where you can voice your thoughts and opinions.

The speaker stresses on two things:

1. Members gallery, Upload anything anytime.  The site also has classifieds, post things.  THey dont take money for it.  The guys want to make sure that ppl of the city are aware of what is happening in THEIR OWN CITY….

The site is up for the last one month, they’re open to suggestions on things as to what they can improve.  They also have plans of raising money through Associate Branding and Ad chains where the owners try to ensure that the user is at no point annoyed because of the ads.

They have a secret concept called see2get which is coming down in the pipe…

They also have plans to introduce Live Radio Broadcasting and things liks that… Blogs and Wiki and Podcasting are also in the pipe….

The speaker stressed that the site will remain a non-profit oriented entity.

How Important is a USER in WEB 2.0?

Unless the user likes the content and the presentation, he wouldnt come back.

What are the factors affecting the user:

  • Agility and attention
  • Usability and Interaction
  • Freshness and Quality
  • Ads or nuisance?

Web 2.0 is not just social networking, socializing and things like this… It has more dimensions to this.  Their groups concept of medical cards is based on the other vivid dimensions in the technology where they intend to take medicards over the internet. The motto being webize everything.

The perspectives of WEB 2.0:

  • The GUI perspective
  • The Functionality Perspective
  • The Response perspective
  • The Developer perspective

All 4 above points are interrelated with more or less the same and distinct priorities, and it would mandate that the sites are successful in the web2.0 scenario, it would usually have a succesful mix of all 4.

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Day 2- Barcamp Bangalore 2.0: 5 minute pulao for Bachelors

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 3, 2006

 Speaker: Sowmya Karmalli

  1. Soak rice for 5 mins (Soak it well)
  2. Pull out the vegetables and cut them up… If u get the cut ones gud 4 u!!!
  3. Get a hug pan and put oil and fry till “U” feel it’s OK.  Dont leave the stove running… Just wait till a ‘lil bit of smoke’ comes out…
  4. Once the veggies are done, put in the pulao!!! err…. rice… AFTER DRAINING OUT THE WATER… AND YOU MAY TO CHOOSE TO CALL PIZZA HUT AFTER THIS!!!!
  5. One portion of rice to two portions of water… Hope u have an electric cooker… or else, pull off 2 whistles off a pressure cooker…

And yeah… Pulao is done….

Tip: Soak the rice in warm water if u want pulao done 4 breakfast!! B-)

Phew… The kind of talks @ Barcamp!!!

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Open Source++ – Open Source Extended

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 2, 2006

Mr. Bharath – www.e141a.org

The Problem in Analysis: Buying a college / school application form.  There are huge queues, physical discomfort and mental agony involved in this process is too much to bear.  A student also has to spend a lot of time and money in getting the form, filling it up without mistakes and so on…

Solution: The community gets together to develop an application / system where the students enter their profile and then submit it to any institution…  The best part is that for every application submitted, the institution donates some money to an NGO. 

Advertising launch in chennai next week, get students to come forward and provide solutions… and then the best team gets a prize.  The software will be developed using open source technologies to build them on things like sourceforge.net.

Challenges: Application form submission, Acceptance, Connectivity, Auto – Submission, Collection of Application Fee.

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GameDev

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 2, 2006

Mr. Rakesh Raju from CodeWalla… The talk was primarily on why casual games and why it would definitely benefit more to make a casual game than a serious game like a fps or an rpg…

Concoles are opening up, Web 2.0 is happening as a social computing aspect (Second Life)…

Why gamedev in India, why not???,

Casual games or serious ones – Decision

Gaming is not actually engineering… We’re in the engineering space… There is a culture behind developing a game…  There have to be people who can do a lot of board design, balace entertainment with the challenges from technology.  We have a lot of technically capable crowd… But even with the knowledge of a complex topic such as computer graphics, there are not many people that actually spend time with graphic libraries, game graphic renderers and things like that….

Because of the complexity and challenges involved in the development of games and the risk of competition involved, the best option to choose in game development is to make a casual game… And it would cost around 25k $ in developing the game in India.

A game which is as simple of tetris sells more copies than any popular fps game… The reason??? Simple gameplay, no learning curve, etc.

The technical approach behind the development of these simple and casual games is to not reinvent of the wheel…. In terms of using a game engine…

As far as art / design approaches are concerned, we need to decide between the 2d / 3d perspective… Look at the detail involved.  ALWAYS HAVE GOOD MUSIC!!!

Saw a demo of a simple game called Diamond Mine.  And another game which was created exactly on the lines of Diamond mine using a game engine called “Torque”.

The issues on using a thirdparty game engine is that the documentation is very crappy.  THe learning curve is usually steep and the talent pool that can use a game engine is pretty rare coz every game engine usually has a language of it’s own and everything is from the ground up…

Game on…

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Posting post GRUB!!! :D

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 2, 2006

Lunch was kewl….  Met a ton of ppl and spoke about what they do with technology for the pure love of it… My oh my!!! Web 2.0 is “the” phenomenon….  90% of the people @ BarcampBangalore 2.0 have something or the other to do with the phenomenon… And that’s wat it is… finally… It’s about a community initiative, one of the most basic stand points on a system with a web 2.0 based initiative…  Barcamp Rocks… I’ve also signed up with Geek Nights… Another thing to do on the lines of Barcamps….

And yeah… the next set of sessions in the afternoon, Hackdays, Pyrex, Agile Project Management…. and a bagful of other beautiful topics to talk of!!!! and unconference about…

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P2p Information Services – Kallol Borah

Posted by cruisemaniac on December 2, 2006

This guy runs a small business networks company called Aumega Networks in London…  Guys passionate about new technology and building systems out of the latest stuff…  Projects with Toshiba and Honeywell occurred where they had to develop enterprise level prp information services….  The presentaion is about p2p web services….

Agenda:

  1. What is p2p? WHat qualifies as a web services
  2. se cases
  3. Requirements for programming p2p services
  4. programming concepts
  5. snapshots
  6. how can you contribute…

Analysis of the architecture of different p2p networks on the classification of topologies….  It depends on how fast you want to find a peer on a network…

  • Zoho, Flickr, Pandora, Youtube are publish and subscribe web services… where it’s all centralised… where it’s not all that good bearing the complications and the trouble you gotta take….

What problems do p2p + webservices solve?

  • It’s fast….  Happens coz there is the p2p connectivity….
  • Extend webservices beyond the web… Every peer becomes a publisher of it’s content…. and also the subscriber to other peers that have content wanted by the peer…
  • Access services while you work online… Auto-update for eg.

Technology issues with p2p services

  • Service discovery and subscription
  • coping with multiple networks – must be able to find out peers over an overlay network
  • Message routing – find the shortest rout to a peer
  • NAT and Firewall traversals – get through firewalls, hole punching of NATS using TCP and UDP.
  • Transactions – how to know the remote service availability and operations ( Logging )
  • Security – You know what it means 😛

These guys have developed an intermediate network layer which handles the p2p networking stuff… which has apis that the guys can use.

How do you program a p2p service?

  • With Indus
    • Programmin toolkit for p2p services
    • complete backend services – discovery, remote service, subscription, rout3ers, tx managers, nat traversal, etc…
    • customisable routers, listeners and adapters,
    • Integrated bev server to handle both desktop and thin client requests
    • OPEN SOURCE
  • Architecture of indus explained – I dont have the image… I’ll try to get the ppt from the man 😉
  • indus is a syntactic and semantic layer over the java vm. (K E W L!!!) B-)

Indus network Architecture

  • Multiple networks can simultaneously co-exist

There was then a technical explanation of how the system is engineered…  The system does look kind of neat u know…  Their threading mark looks good… No more notify() and notifyAll() for threading models!!! Yaay!!!  The SDK is free to use…

Tats session 2!!!!

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