LB2004 Day 1

2 minute read

Day 1 started with the inauguration of Linux Bangalore/2004 . LB doesn't have the concept of chief guests, but the chief guest is the audience and so the representatives of various LUGs across India lighted the lamps, on behalf of the audience, to inaugurate the beginning of 3 days of LB2004.

Then, Atul explained how the BLUG logo and the LB2004 logo were created. The BLUG logo consists of different colored lines drawn in waves to give the effect of looking like a globe... this emphasizes many qualities of BLUG - open, techie, catering to the world and with Indian flag colors to indicate the Indian touch to it.

The LB2004 logo consists of the words LINUX BANGALORE/2004 made from photos of the past 3 years of LB to indicate that LB is really for the people, by the people and of the people :)

Then, we attended Brian Behlendorf's (the guy who started the Apache project!) session on open source and what makes it tick... he emphasizes the key innovations by open source communities are code, community and context - the open code allows to build upon it, and to reuse and modify it and to fix bugs. The community develops knowledge and allows one to connect to it in a very easy way. The context of CVS ChangeLog and mailing list discussions lead to a history. These 3 qualities are what makes open source unique and what makes it tick... along with this, there are 3 principles that need to be followed - transparency, association of code to individuals and accessibility.

This was followed by a talk on 'GPL is not public domain' by Harald Welte (of netfilter/iptables fame) and he gave many insights which I was completely unaware of, such as - small bugfixes in code are not copyrightable... GPL is about distribution, not usage ... and in simple words, the intent of the license is to enable the user to run modified versions of the program.

Next, was Behlendorf giving an introduction on Subversion - interesting to note the wide range of features that Subversion has and seems to be very robust. The Mono project recently shifted to svn from cvs and that surely gives confidence to many people about the viability of svn.

Then, I attended the talk on SCons - a replacement for Make. It was a very engaging session and I liked the fact that the equivalent of Makefiles are just simple Python scripts!

I had to go office to clear any backlog of work and so, unfortunately, had to miss the talk on Parrot (which was supposed to be before the SCons talk, but was postponed due to some technical problems)...

Thinking about Subversion and SCons... amazing stuff... next generation software that replaces old but true-and-tested software... boy, the software world just moves at such a rapid pace.... this is why this profession gives me a high everyday :)

Have to prepare for my talk tomorrow at 10 am!