Computer Science Association, BITS Pilani

March 12, 2010

And it finally begins…

Filed under: Uncategorized — csa2010 @ 4:13 pm

The unconference has finally started with Kinshuk giving an introduction about Open source softwares. The session has started off as quite interactive. A video was shown titled “Open Source is Magic” by Chris DiBona from Google.  A talk by Atharva on Revision Control System is now about to start…

The begining of a start

Filed under: Uncategorized — csa2010 @ 3:13 pm

Well the start of the Unconference ahs been delayed due to CERN scientist Archana Sharma’s lecture which was going on at the same time. So the event now starts at 9:00 p.m. With half an hour to go lots of preparations are under way. Just now one of the speakers ahs turned up and is busy setting up his laptop.  The LTC QT where the session will be held is all set for action with Wi-Fi connec. A small crowd has already gathered to participate in the event and are patiently waiting for it to start.  Ok. Now I must sign off… Have some work to do… Catch you later…

March 11, 2010

The calm before the OSScamp

Filed under: Uncategorized — csa2010 @ 7:06 pm

Today marks the start of FOSS Den @BITS-Pilani. So I thought I could put everyone up to date with what’s going on behind the scenes in the Den. Well, 1216 has been set up as the FOSS-Den and we have about 6 comps there loaded and ready. Plus we have prepared some presentations on open source softwares. Mostly the preparations at FOSS Den have been pretty fun with everyone engrossed in the work. In fact people were so engrossed in their work, nobody noticed me sneakily playing Diablo on my computer side by side ;). Anyways now back to some serious stuff… Let me brush up on today’s schedule

  • 08pm – 10pm: Social Sandbox: Open Source, Unconferences, India – @LTC
  • 10pm – 12am: Sessions and Talks (4 Slots Available) – @LTC
  • 12am – 02am: FOSS Hackathon – @LTC QT

Personally I am looking forward for the session at M-Lawns. Open air, Lawns… It is going to be one heck of an event. The OSScamp is going to be ‘OSS’ome :). Keep watching this space for more details…

February 23, 2010

BUZZ Off.. !!

Filed under: Geeky — csa2010 @ 4:53 pm

Google Buzz is the newest kid in the flourishing town of social networking. For those who don’t know, Google Buzz is a social networking and messaging tool from Google, designed to integrate into the company’s web-based email program, Gmail. Users can share links, photos, videos, status messages and comments organized in conversations and visible in the user’s inbox.

But this venture of one of the world’s most appreciated innovator seems to have backfired. Many Google users are not as impressed by Buzz as expected. Buzz was certainly a good combination of Twitter and Gmail right in you inbox. Though many things about Buzz were quite cool and impressive, it failed to strike the right cord for many.

One of the primary reasons why Buzz has seen some detest from the users is Buzz forces its way into your mailing system. A Gmail user is left with little choice but to accept Google Buzz. So even though you may skip noticing  it a few times, finally you may say ‘what the heck’ and accept it anyway. Another eccentric drawback is that Google has defiantly interfered with the user’s personal privacy. When you agree to take Google Buzz in your life, remember one thing, you automatically follow some of them (without your knowledge) and they will follow you automatically as well. So in case, you do not want them to follow you, you have to go to each contact and put an ‘uncheck mark’ against them one by one. When you send a message on Google Buzz, you have an option to keep as public or private. But if someone replies or comments on it, your followers can see it. Google has quite a clean image on the web, but such tactics can very well tarnish it out.

A recent New York Times article stated that “Google is known for releasing new products before they are fully ready and then improving them over time.” Google has twice tried to address privacy concerns: first by making the option to disable public sharing of contact lists more prominent and later by changing one of Buzz’s features from “auto-follow” to “auto-suggest”. This allows users to choose whom they follow, and, therefore, who is revealed on their public list of contacts; the list is still public by default. These changes to the way that Google Buzz operates have, however, been criticized as inadequate and the company has been criticized for failing to take its users’ privacy concerns seriously.

Buzz has received a cold reception at the hands of the media as well as the general public. And the matter of fact is that there is nothing new and original in Buzz. PCWorld’s JR Raphael criticized Buzz for both its intrusive nature and privacy concerns, citing above all that it merely adds “more noise into an already buzzing area of my life”.

If you are a user who has no use for Google Buzz, login to your Gmail account and scroll down to the bottom of the page. In the footer links you will see a link which says “turn off buzz”. Just click on that link and Google Buzz will disappear from your Gmail account forever. If you want to turn on Google Buzz again(Why would you??), scroll down to the bottom and click on the “turn on buzz” link. But Google should quickly strip Gmail of this feature themselves rather than make the users do it. We just hope that Google soon realizes that even the best can make mistakes. After all, it is their ability to rectify and learn from these follies which sets them all apart.

February 18, 2010

C.O.D.E.R

Filed under: Events — csa2010 @ 8:59 am

Brace up for the first Coding extravaganza of the APOGEE season. CODER is back this year in an all new avatar, with even more tantalizing questions to solve and an even saucier theme. Enjoy racking your brains as you play around with God’s own language, the almighty ‘C’ and use your wits and ingenuity to do the rest for you.

The best part is, of course, the chance to prove your C coding mettle on a nation-wide platform. And with the respect, you get some fabulous prizes to take home.

Can’t wait to see the questions already ??? Go register yourself for CODER at : http://bits-apogee.org/2010/user/register.

Qrious

Filed under: Events — csa2010 @ 8:58 am

The most awaited Quizzing event of APOGEE.. starts 20th February at 8.00 PM

Log onto http://bits-apogee.org/2010/event/online/qrious for more info

February 7, 2010

Idea challenge

Filed under: Uncategorized — csa2010 @ 7:09 pm

Computer Science Association welcomes you to Idea Challenge, 2010. This event has been launched with the aim of fostering a Problem-solving mindset among students in India. It is largely felt that the student community in the country, though highly enthusiastic and innovative, does not still have enough chances to work on the burning technical problems of the day. Idea Challenge aims to provide the students with one such platform and to direct them to use their creativity for the betterment of the society.


Organization of the Event:

The Event consists of two phases:

The first phase, held between 25th January – 8th February. The contestants will be required to register online wherein they will be challenged with two problems. The group can pick one problem of their choice.

First deadline: 8th February, 23:59 hrs.
The group will be required to submit an abstract of the proposed solution to the problem. The abstracts will be checked and competent abstracts will be forwarded to the next round. Those abstracts which are not deemed competent enough will be provided proper direction towards a more feasible solution.
Mail in your abstracts to: ideachallenge2010[AT]gmail.com

Second Deadline: 28th February, 23:59 hrs

The groups are required to submit the final implementation of the proposed solution by this date. The format of the final implementations and the languages/software/hardware involved in the final implementations will be individually conveyed to the participants, after the completion of the first phase.

Rules
• Teams of maximum 3.
• The organisers hold the right to disqualify a team for any malpractice/lack of originality.
• The decision of the judges is final and binding.

Contacts
Varun Pandey
+91-99506-75199

Rohit Mittal
+91-95096-28995

January 28, 2010

Adobe Flex boot camp

Filed under: Events — Shyam Sunder @ 6:02 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

Adobe Flex boot camp was organised at BITS Pilani on 24th January 2010. The event saw over 300 BITSians participating and it was one of the most successful tech talks on campus till date. Harish Sivaramakrishnan and Sujit Reddy G, both working as evangelists in Adobe systems were the main speakers at the workshop. The fact that both of them are ex-BITSians, peaked the enthusiasm and excitement.

The event started at around 10 am. Harish gave an overview about Adobe flash and flex. It was followed by demos of applications already developed using Flex. Be it the demo on air ticket booking, the music generating tool, or the car insurance application, the students enjoyed them thoroughly. Then Sujit took over and explained the Adobe Flex framework.

The post-lunch session saw more people than in the morning. It began by demonstration of a new professional interaction design tool called Adobe Flash catalyst. Harish took up the challenge of creating a video player in 30 minutes, which was hugely supported and enthused by the students. After that, Sujit went into more details on Flex and showed how to connect a Flex application to data source and access it.

Before ending the part-1 of the camp, Harish and Sujit had a general Q&A round, with many different questions poring in. They discussed their BITSian days, talked about their jobs, gave career advices and it was benefetial for all present. The talks ended at 3:30 PM and the lab sessions began, where 120 selected students got a chance to have a hands-on experience working with Adobe Flex builder. The lab was conducted for over 3 hours, where students built an application using the tutorials provided. Many of the students completed it in two hours much to the liking of the organizers.

Even though the boot camp lasted for about 8 hours,  the speakers left the students asking for more. The cool and casual  style of presentation adopted by both of them, the in-talk jokes, the end-session ragging made the whole camp a great experience. More importantly, it motivated the students towards developing applications using Flex and become proficient at it.

November 13, 2009

IF I by Demetri Martin

Remember the Amphitheater meet? To really understand CSA one has to look beyond the managerial aspects of it and delve into its technical as well as social depths.

Friday the 13th, a get-together of the association with Demetri Martin‘s award-winning ‘If I’ video to be aired as a starter followed by the semester review meeting. There was a decent audience that gathered despite the chilly night and the sudden illness that many of them (inside and outside the association) took to.

The introduction ‘nubes‘ receive for Demetri is thus:

  • he composes everything on his own for his show: the music, the art and the witty lines of course;
  • his jokes are not just funny but they are thought-provoking;

The show takes us through different phases of Demetri’s life by exploring the dictionary meanings of the word ‘IF‘ and using it to explain some why he did the things he did. Here are the hidden thoughts that should get you searching You Tube for the videos (the links can be found below).

  1. Trying/Doing things that you really like: Does solving the cube interest you more than studying for a mid-term test, go ahead!
  2. Achieving technical competency in areas where you think you are good: Good at social media? When a social media activist asks you to talk about it for five minutes on the topic are you up to it?
  3. Keeping your mind strong through self-imposed hurdles: Does waving at the girl-next-door scare you? Do at least one thing everyday that makes you feel scared/insecure.

Trust me, you’ll find your niche in the one hour you spend on it. The entire video is in 6 parts of nine minutes each:

55minutes of watching and 5 minutes of reflection (maybe a blog post?) should make your day! Hope you have all the fun in the world, provided IF you have access to youtube… 😛

November 5, 2009

Newsletter: BYTE

Filed under: Geeky,Papers — csa2010 @ 5:16 am
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

As an association we would be incomplete without regular (or irregular) newsletters talking about:

  • the changing face of technology
  • what are the must know things for students (from our point of view)
  • what Computer Science Association (CSA) is upto

We’ve decided to roll out a newsletter titled BYTE that is going to give you a ‘bite’ into the latest news from both on-campus and off it.

BYTE 0: Introduction newsletter of Computer Science Association (CSA)

First Yearites Orientation

Dualites Orientation

This was a welcome message to first year and dual Computer Science students about what CSA is and what it is planning. Click the above links to view.

First newsletter of Computer Science Association (CSA)

BYTE 1

  • The theme for this newsletter: Sports! (owing to BOSM 2009).
  • A special thanks to Jim Burgesse who has been kind enough to grant us permission to use his Comic Strips to engage people in both the issues.
  • An important highlight is that this is the first time that CSA newsletters are going online!
  • IBM Technology Day 2009 at BITS Pilani has been covered and a further insight into Supercomputing has been provided.
  • The BYTEsian of the issue is Mr. Uday Kovur who has written the review for Football Manager 2009, which was easily one of the fast catching up games during August-September (among the BITSians)

Watch out for the next issue of BYTE. Till then

Happy BYTEing

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