User:Shajinth Pathmakulaseelan/FSOSS 2013
Free Software and Open Source Symposium By Shajinth Pathmakulaseelan
Throughout my years in the program, I have noticed the FSOSS event that is held every year but I had never really given it a thought about attend the event until this year when it was mentioned in the Open Source course. Seeing how popular this event has been for the past few years, and getting an opportunity to learn from the open source community, I gave it a thought about attending the event and I decided to attend the Friday event. I arrived at the event about 9am and picked up my FSOSS items, and name tag. Once I got my items, I joined my friend and I met a lot of new people attending the event. I attended a few events that caught my attention such as processing.js, webRTC with BigBlueButon, and the ARM presentation which I felt was not directly related to open source. I will be going through processing.js and webRTC, and give my views based on the two presentation and the overall event.
Speakers:Dylan Segna and Andrei Kopytov
The first presentation that I had attended was about Processing.js by Dylan Segna and Andrei Kopytov. They started off brief information about themselves such as working a CDOT. Then they talked about the history of how processing.js started which I thought was interesting how the creator of Jquery John Resig created processing.js. The main idea of function was to create a bridge between artist and programmers wanting to create 2D graphics. Dylan Segna told us how Processing.js was originally created for 2D graphics however and how Seneca is actively contributing to creating 3D functionality. Some of the functionality in processing.js they went through were matrix, and scaling. They then talked about supporting external inputs such as keyboard and mouse while processing.js is run. and image format support such as JPEG and PNG. They did bring up how sound can only be used by using an external library. They talked about the game engine made by Pomax, and showed a demo of Super Mario using processing.js. They also showed an example where they used Firefox's debugging too fix an issue. At first glance it looked complicated but throughout the presentation they mentioned processing.js is easier than it looks. By the end of the presentation I was interested in working with processing.js and I'm looking forward to working with it.
WebRTC with BigBlueButton Presentation
I decided to go see the WebRTC presentation which prior to the presentation I had no idea what it was. My friend used it for his class and he encouraged me to go see the presentation with him. So once I got there things started out differently than what I expected. I attend the presentation expecting to see Fred Dixon giving talking about webRTC in person, instead he remotely giving a presentation using WebRTC which stood out from all the other presentations I have seen. Chad was acting as a proxy for Fred controlling the BigBlueButton which I thought was interesting way of showing a real life use for WebRTC. Fred Dixon started off the presentation with introducing himself then he talked about possible cases where people can use WebRTC such as one to one, small group collaboration or one to many such as a virtual classroom environment with one teacher and many students. He went through the features such as desktop sharing audio, video chat, slides and pointed out that this was designed for teaching. At first I was wondering how different it was from Skype and various other applications, but as he was going through the features, I started to see how different this was compared to Skype making it a desirable teaching software which also happens to be open source. One in particular that stood out was the ability to display and control slides and drawing tool. He showed the award they were given by the Office of Science and Technology Policy and, then went through how WebRTC could be setup. The software can be setup by anyone for free on their own server. He also mentioned the ideal number of people to host for is 25 to avoid any issues with the hardware used as their server. Then he explained how the front end was using flash because of the great compatibility support with webcams. Then he explained the whole session can be recorded using two external open source projects such as Red5 for video and FreeSwitch for Audio. He also said how the audio compression and video codecs used in WebRTC makes it a effective way to interact with anyone in the world with low bandwidth which I thought was interesting. Then he went through the development process and future goals of what they are implementing in the future. For the future they are working on implementing HTML5 as well as support for flash and mobile support. This presentation made me excited to see the features implemented, and interested in developing some of those features. Since the entire project is open source I believe there is a lot of room for this project to grow with vast amount of features that can be implemented onto WebRTC.
My Views and presentation Comparison
Based on the two presentations that I attended, I realized in Open Source you can start on a project in any direction you want with no guidelines on how you want to approach it. You have the tools readily available to use and you can decide how you want to use them. In my other classes I'm told I can only do it in one way, but in open source you are encouraged to use other peoples code as long as the code is not licenced. After attending the two presentations, I am currently interested in exploring these projects as well as other open source projects and start developing and continue contributing to the open source community even after I am finished with the open source course.
Both Presenters show how open source you can use the open source community to help you with what your looking for as long as they are not licenced. Both speakers appear to have similar viewpoints on open source. They both feel people should not be afraid to get involved in the open source community. Both talk about how the start up cost is a lot cheaper and you get help and support from the open source community whether its code contribution, bug fixes or feedbacks provided by the community.
I have learned a lot of new information and met a lot of people while attending the FSOSS event including processing.js and WebRTC. Overall I enjoyed the presentations I attended and the discussions that came along with each presentation especially the ARM presentation which was followed by active discussion and debates. FSOSS has really given me more of a positive look at open source. It has shown me that most open source can help developers because many companies look at the open source community which end up being improved for the community and implemented in their applications. Working with open source can help with building a career portfolio and the FSOSS event has giving me ideas on various projects I could potential work on to add to my portfolio. As my first time attending FSOSS event I enjoyed the event and I will be looking forward to attending the next FOSS event.