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Debutsav'14 at God's own country

Kerala...God's own country. I had always wanted to visit it, but never had a chance of being there. One evening, I suddenly received a very unexpected call, inviting me to be a part of Debutsab'14 at Amrita college, Kerala.

The poster of Debutsav'14
Though it was Kerala, I wasn't entirely enthusiastic for this event. I not been keeping too well for the last few days and doctor had strictly asked me to work less and rest more! Attending one more event at this time would definitely mean another hectic trip. But someone, the idea of introducing Scrollback to another community of open source lovers, talking about this awesome project to a new group of people was an idea which I couldn't entirely ignore. After some discussion with the rest of the Scrollback team, I decided to take this event up.

13 hours to reach Ernakulam, 3 hours from there to reach Kayankulam and another 30 mins ride to finally reach Amritapuri...it wasn't a very easy or comfortable journey. But once I reached Amritapuri, I realized that this long trip was totally worth it. Kerala, rightly called God's own country. The campus was beautiful. Backwaters, boats, sea, loads of coconut trees, a very clean beach and a very peaceful environment, the campus had it all.


Amritapuri...an example of true beauty

When I had left for this event, I was really wondering about my next few days. I knew I was not going to be welcomed by too many known faces here! But, once I was there, I realized how like minds often don't need much time to get along. I was meeting almost everyone for the first time, but it didn't feel like so after the initial 5 minutes of the conversations. Sometimes, strangers don't feel strange at all...and that is exactly what happened to me here.

On the first day of the event, I took the stage for some 15 minutes to give a quick demo of Scrollback, so that every participant of the event could use Scrollback as the communication platform during as well as after the event, to keep the network alive. On the second day, I did occupy the podium for a little longer, talking about why Scrollback was built, inspite of having so many other communication media.

Me, talking about the next generation IRC
The three days actually passed way faster than expected. I had to leave a little early, before the event could be closed, but the time I did spend with everyone at Amritapuri is totally unforgettable.


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Maker Party Bhubaneshwar

Posted by priyanka nag on 9:09 AM in , , , ,
Last weekend I had a blast in Bhubaneshwar. Over two days, I was there at two different colleges for two Maker parties.

Saturday (23rd August 2014), we were at the Center of IT & Management Education (CIME) where we were asked to address a crowd of 100 participants whom we were supposed to teach webmaking. Trust me, very rarely do we get such crowd in events where we get the opportunity to be less of a teacher and more of a learner. We taught them Webmaking, true, but in return we learnt a lot from them.

Maker Party at Center of IT & Management Education (CIME)

On Sunday, things were even more fabulous at Institute of Technical Education & Research(ITER), Siksha 'O' Anusandhan University college, where we were welcomed by around 400 participants, all filled with energy, enthusiasm and the willingness to learn.

Maker Party at Institute of Technical Education & Research(ITER)

Our agenda for both days were simple....to have loads and loads of fun! We kept the tracks interactive and very open ended. On both days, we did cover the following topics:
  • Introduction to Mozilla
  • Mozilla Products and projects
  • Ways of contributing to Mozilla
  • Intro to Webmaker tools
  • Hands-on session on Thimble, Popcorn and X-ray goggles and Appmaker
Both days, we concluded our sessions by giving away some small tokens of appreciation like e T-shirts, badges, stickers etc, to the people who had been extra awesome among the group. We concluded the awesomeness of the two days by cutting a very delicious cake and fighting over it till its last pieces.
Cake.....
Bading goodbye after two days was tough, but after witnessing the enthusiasm of everyone we met during these two events, I am very sure we are going to return soon to Bhubaneshwar for even more awesomeness.
A few people who are two be thanked for making these events sucessful and very memorable are:
  1. Sayak Sarkar, the co-organizer for this event.
  2. Sumantro, Umesh and Sukanta from travelling all the way from Kolkata and helping us out with the sessions.
  3. Rish and Prasanna for organizing these events.
  4. Most importantly, the entire team of volunteers from both colleges without whom we wouldn't havebeen able to even move a desk.
 p.s - Not to forget, we did manage to grab media's attention as well. The event was covered by a local newspaper.
The article in the newspaper next morning


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Maker Party gets grander in Pune this time

While going through my twitter time-line this evening, I noticed Michelle Thorne's tweet stating that India leads with most Maker Party action this season.
Well, who doubts that! In India, we have a maker parties being organized almost every second day. My facebook wall and twitter timelime is like overloaded with posts, photos and updates from all the Maker Parties happening around me.

Maker Party, Pune


Well, if you are still not aware of this one, we are having the grand daddy of this maker parties in Pune on the 6th of September 2014. The executive director of Mozilla Foundation, Mark Surman, is going to be personally present for this event. Just like all maker parties, this event is an attempt to map and empower a community of educators and creative people who share a passion to innovate, evolve and change the learning landscape.

A few quick updates about this event:
  •  Event date - 6th and 7th September
  •  Event venue - SICSR, Model Colony, Pune
  • Rough agenda for the event is going to be:
    • 6th September 2014 (Day 1) 
      • 10am - 11am : Mozilla introduction
      • 11am - 12 : About Hive initiative
      •  12 - 1pm: Rohit Lalwani - Entrepreneurship talk
      •  1-2pm : Lunch break
      •  2pm - 3pm: Webmaker begins with Appmaker
      •  3pm - 4pm: Webmaker continues with Thimble
      •  4pm - 4.45pm: Webmaker continues with Popcorn
      •  4.45pm - 5.30pm : Webmaker continues with x-ray goggles
      • 5.30pm - 6pm: Prize distribution (against best makes of the day etc). Science fair also ends
      • 6pm - 7pm : Birds of feature
      • 7pm : Dinner (venue - TBD)
Science fair will be from 12 noon to 6pm.
  
    •  7th September 2014 (Day 2) 
      • 1st Half: Community Meetup and Discussions on the future roadmap for Hive India,
        Long term partnership prospect meeting with partners.
      •  2nd Half: Community training sessions on Hive and Train the trainer events.
 
For this event, we are having a variety of different training sessions, workshops and science displays - starting from 3D printing to wood-works, Origami to quad-copter flying and even film making.

If you have still not registered for this event, heres your chance:



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My apology against the happenings of last weekend

Posted by priyanka nag on 10:20 PM
It always feels good to be appreciated and bad to be criticized. Most of the time I am able to deal well with the appreciation but get very defensive about the criticism.

I like to be addressed as a newbie in the Open Source world...cause there are still many things I need to learn (for sure)...many things I need to understand.
I make mistakes, I know I do....but all I expect is, my mistakes should not be associated with the organizations I represent!

Last week, during one of my talks at the FSMK Summer camp in Bangalore, one of my statement probably came out wrong.The way I wanted to present it was probably not the way the audience had perceived it. It kind of went out of hand later on Twitter.

I am making this blog post to apologize for the mistakes of last week with full faith that the matter will be resolved and closed right here and no grievances of the incident will be held further.

For the all the curious minds, this post is in reference to this tweet thread:
https://twitter.com/koolhead17/status/493017466449059840

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Mozilla and WeTech Women's Maker Party, Delhi

Posted by priyanka nag on 7:51 AM in , , , ,
Well, I love the name Larissa came up with for today's event. It is kind of a little long but defines the event best - "Mozilla and WeTech Woman’s Maker Party".

We had landed in Delhi on the 22nd of July 2014 and as Larissa defines it, Delhi was indeed a 'steam sauna'. We did spend most of that day going around and visiting a few famous places like the Red Fort, the India Gate, Parliament house etc. In the evening, we did meet the local Mozillians in Delhi. Well, it was an informal meeting of all Mozillians, talking all 'sh!t mozillians say' ;)

23rd morning began with all excitement. It was a small crowd, but a really awesome crowd in that conference room. Right from the introduction session, we could feel the high intellectual capabilities these young ladies were filled with. After a small game of spectrogram, we immediately moved to introduce Mozilla as an organization as well as all the Mozilla projects. To my surprise, most of the participants already knew about Open Source and had a fair idea about Mozilla. To my greater surprise, all of our participants had used Firefox at some point of time (even if it was not their default/regular browser). It was thus easy to introduce the different Mozilla projects and contribution pathways to them.

Serious hacking in progress...
The confidence these dynamic ladies did showcase was beyond appreciation.
One thing each person in the room agreed to was - "being a woman in technology is indeed tough". But these girls were ready to face the tough world and fight it out for themselves!

Post lunch, we got to some webmaking. So much hacking, so much remixing...it was tough to believe that many of these people were "not from a technical background".
Some of the awesome makes can be found listed on this spreadsheet.

Well, it goes beyond saying that these superstarts definitely deserved some awards for their awesomeness and thus, we did give them some webmaker badges.

Very few events have given me the happiness of being able to convert almost all participants into Mozillians and this was one of those rare ones.

The awesome woman Webmakers of Delhi :)



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Embedding a Google Form in Wordpress

The process of embedding a Google form on your Wordpress blog post is pretty simple. Rather, this same process can be used to embed a Google form on a Blogger post or any other webpage.

  • Once you are done creating the Google form, when you click on the 'Send form' button, you will see a Embed button on the modal window.

On the share window, you get the option to embed the form


  • On clicking the Embed button, you will get an html iframe code which can be copied and pasted on any webpage.

The iframe code to embed the form

If you are trying to embed the form on your webpage, all you need to do is copy the html iframe code and paste it in the <body> section of your html.

If you are trying to embed the form in your wordpress or blogger site, while creating the post, switch to the "HTML" version and put this iframe code in the appropriate position wherever you want to embed it in your post.

Once the code is put in place, you will get the google form embeded inside your webpage, be it Wordpress, blogger or simple html.


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My story featured on Yourstory

Posted by priyanka nag on 10:30 AM in ,
Before your big launch, facing a few new bugs and needing to fix them in utmost urgency is something I guess every developer at a startup needs to undergo. I would rather say, these adrenaline rush makes our work life more exciting. We had a similar firefighting night at Scrollback yesterday and thus, by the time I reached home, it was 8.30am. My system (by that I mean my brain) was probably over heated already and thus I crashed as soon as I did hit the bed.

When I woke up at around 4pm, my phone showed a few too many notifications. There were innumerable congratulation messages and I was still wondering over them till I saw Aditya's post on my Facebook timeline.

I had met Aditya on a Sunday evening over a cup of coffee. Well, we had met for an interview (where I had expected Aditya to be someone like a professional interviewer, expecting me to answer all his questions), but the so called interview didn't feel anything as I had thought it to be like. It felt more like meeting a friend over a cup of coffee. We had a long (almost 3 hour) chat and during the entire conversation, it wasn't anything like Aditya asking me questions and me answering. For all the different topics he wanted me to talk about, he told me his side of the story as well....which made it all informal and friendly. Given a chance, I could also probably write a small article about him (ofcourse I don't have the technical skills like him to do that, but I have a few facts for sure).

The impact of this one article was huge indeed. In less than12 hours, I have received some 10+ emails different people....some asking me to talk at their event, some asking me to help them with their startup settings, some simply congratulating me and some even saying how their life story had been very similar to mine.

One honest confession - I feel a little embarrassed to read the article myself. It like too much nice things being said all together at the same time! Well, either I suffer from imposter syndrome or Aditya was a bit too humble to bring out such a good image of mine :P

One more person, I shouldn't forget to credit is Santosh. Well, it was he who kind of thought all my work was worth being covered in TechieTuesday and got me connected to Aditya.

Link to the Yourstory article : http://yourstory.com/2014/07/priyanka-nag-techie-tuesdays/


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