BarCamp, the “Un-Conference” Experience
November 27, 2010
Amritapuri campus warmly welcomed the ninth edition of BarCamp Kerala on November 14, 2010. An international network of user-generated “un-conferences” held in over 350 cities around the world, BarCamp is open to anyone interested in sharing information or learning something new.
The rule-free forum has but one requirement, those attending must give a demonstration or lead a session or volunteer in some other way to support the event.
BarCamp 9 opened with a presentation on Word Press Plug-in Development, by Binny V. A., who created a small plug-in on-stage to demonstrate how anyone could do it themselves.
In another session, Praseed Pai spoke on FOSS in Kerala. He discussed the history of the free software movement and its advantages. Feedback from FOSS evangelists and FOSS enthusiasts made it an interactive session.
The final presentation made by Unnikrishnan R. was titled An Introduction to Haptics. It discussed many applications of haptics technology and design issues involved in developing visuo-haptic applications.
There were 20 presentations in all.
Sujith John, attending BarCamp for the first time, shared his impressions. “The sessions were very informative. Personally, I found BarCamp 9 to be a great opportunity to network with like-minded people.”
The 125 participants who attended the camp were encouraged to blog, tweet and phone friends about BarCamp at any level. A high bandwidth Wi-Fi facility and a tweet wall added to the novelty of the “un-conference” setting. Participant tweets were projected on the tweet wall and could be read by all.
“We estimate that tweets during the BarCamp reached more than one lakh people all over the world,” stated Assistant Professor, Binu P.K., one of the key conference organizers.
He summed up the BarCamp experience.
“The open and interactive environment was totally different from that at a normal conference. During the presentations, participants were free to courteously interrupt or walk out if they felt that they were not learning anything. All sessions were innovative and inspiring. Overall, there was a rich learning environment for all participants.”