Sahana @ Unlocking Young Minds ~ 2009


Last Thursday was a very busy day for me specially because it was the starting day of our exhibition. I was responsible for designing the brochure and getting the content finalized and few other designs which needed to handed over to Sanjaya to get them printed on previous day (Wednesday).

The FOSS lovers of my batch got together and decided to do something valuable of what we know during the exhibition by having a section called “Open Source Software” to educate the public about the importance and the benefits they can gain for their daily life. Glimpse into what Sri Lankans have given to the world community. We planned to have the section as follows:

  • Free Operating Systems and their usage
  • FOSS tool for our daily work
  • Sahana Project

In the Free OS section we demonstrated Minix, Free BSD, Sun Solaris, Fedora and Ubuntu by Kalana and Yoshan. In most cases majority of them were surprised about the functionality and the capabilities inherited in them because they had only experienced and exposed to the Windows XP. In the next section people got the chance to get to know and experienced the FOSS alternatives for Office Productivity(OpenOffice Suite ), Image and Video Manipulation(GIMP, Inkscape, Blender, etc..), Internet (Mozilla Firefox, Thunderbird, Pidgin, etc..), Entertainment(VLC, Amarock, Mplayer, etc..), Education, Emulation Engines(Wine), etc.. to name a few, it was conducted by Uthpala.

I took myself the opportunity of explaining and demonstrating the Sahana, which came as a result of Asian Tsunami devastation that took quarter a million of human life away. With the help of the documents received from Chamindra I prepared a poster highlighting its special milestones and its functionality.

Sahana Poster :1

Sahana Poster : Part 1

Sahana Poster :2

Sahana Poster : Part 2

To make the session more interesting I took the OLPC running Sahana on it, and Sahana running from an USB to show them and make them feel how the system can be used in real life situations. I’m happy to say that out of the people I spoke to most showed their interest towards joining the community, especially by students. I’m happy to say that I got an invitation from a school at Rathnapura to do a demonstration of the Sahana project at their exhibition which will be held on 22nd of June, I’m looking forward to it.

During the three days I got the chance to get to know various people and majority of them haven’t even knew that such a project exist and it had done so much of service to the world. So I’m very happy that I got a chance to convey the importance and the services it had given to the world community. I got the chance to talk with Mr. Wasantha Deshapriya the Director, Re-engineering Government Programme Information & Communication Technology Agency(ICTA). He appreciate the effort rendered by the Sahana community to make it a globally acclaimed project.

I had to run to Motorola (Pvt) Ltd Sri Lanka. to collect some of their equipments(various kinds of Bar-code Scanners, Wearable Computers and several other hand-held devices – happy to say that most of them are designed and developed here at Motorola Sir Lanka) during Wednesday. I must especially thank Mr. Ruwan Jayanetthi(who teaches us Embedded Systems) and Mr. Damith Jayawickrama at Motorola (Pvt) Ltd for the support given to me despite their busy schedule.

Memorable moments

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