Posted in Mini-DebConf Mumbai

Mini-DebConf Mumbai 2015

Back from MiniDebian Conference Mumbai, I felt I should revive my old college-days blog and start writing about my experiences with Debian. So here I am, writing a short summary of things I learnt.

Since I was travelling on my own for the first time, reaching Powai and finding a place to stay for the night took me quite some time. Sadly, I missed the keynote and the HFD sessions that I so much wanted to attend. 😦

Rushed to Lecture Hall Complex classroom LT001 midway through Siji Sunny‘s Debian on ARM session. Siji was then explaining the concept of Internet of Things. From what I understood – Every device on the Internet of Things is assigned an ip address and communicates through a network, the data it has gathered via its sensors. Siji then explained the Embedded Operating System Architecture and further talked about Debian ARM Ports: armel, armhf. Looking forward to attending more sessions by Siji (GNUnify maybe … 🙂 )

Raju Vindane gave a lot of demos with his Beaglebone Black. He showed how to configure a static ip address for the board that can be SSHed to, how to view the board’s graphical desktop on laptop without needing a display monitor connected over HDMI, how to connect the board to phone’s Wifi hotspot. He also explained how one could extend functionality with Bacon Capes, giving an example of how hardware can interact directly with a webpage. Raju pointed to elinux.org and piratebox.cc for lots of DIY projects.

 My favorite session was Praveen’s Debian Packaging session on Day 2. From drawing out a timeline of Debian Release Cycles, to talking about the challenges of packaging ruby libraries, explaining how to contribute to Debian, who are Debian Package Maintainers, who are Debian Developers, what powers they have, how to become one, Praveen talked about almost everything you would want to know about Debian. The session was really informative and cleared many of my doubts.

Jaldhar Vyas‘s session on how to setup your own Mail Server was equally informative. Starting from basic terminologies like MTA, MDA, MUA, he also explained what all services are required to be installed to setup a mail server (SSH, DNS, SMTP, IMAP, AntiSpam Software), how to set up iptables for incoming and outgoing connections, what are the different types of DNS records (NS, A, CNAME, MX, etc), how to configure the main.cf Postfix file, and also about being careful while setting up a mail server so that it does not become a spam-relay.

Krishnakant Mane‘s talk on Gnome’s Accessibility Project Orca ( a screen reader software that works with Mozilla, Pidgin as well as OpenOffice) and promoting openness in knowledge sharing was very inspiring 🙂

Manish Goregaokar‘s talk on Mozilla’s memory safe programming language, Rust, was very interesting. Very eager to check it out soon. 🙂

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