Category Archives: sfd

SFD 2008: Preliminary Report

Last Saturday, the Nicaraguan GNU/Linux community celebrated the Software Freedom Day in the city of Managua. I don’t have the final numbers, but we had around 1,300 attendees during the whole day (including the Software Freedom Concert).

Conferences

The SFD event started with one hour delay due to the unprecedented affluence of visitors. Initially, there were four computers registering the attendees, but we had to put three additional laptops in order to fasten the registration process.

We had six conferences with speakers from Brasil, Guatemala, Perú and Nicaragua.

After the final conference, the Community Council of Ubuntu Nicaragua gave an award and the official membership status for all their hard work promoting Ubuntu, to two of the youngest members of our community; Karl Picado (8 years old) and Sharon Gómez (13 years old).

Around 750-800 people attended the conferences.

As a funny note; Around noon, we realised that someone inside the conference hall was streaming the event live. That was actually pretty cool. Thanks MA!

Installfest

We had 30 installations on both laptops and desktops. Mainly openSuse and Ubuntu, but also Fedora, Mandriva, Debian, and one computer with CentOS.

Workshops

102 people attended the three workshops we had on the SFD. There could have been more people, but we had some technical problems and limitations. Only 35 of the 40 computers in the lab worked, and one workshops was cancelled due to the audio/video editing software not working properly.

Despite all, the workshops were a big success and people kept asking if we are going to organise some more in a near future.

Games

The game area, organised by the local LUG at the University, was a big success. There were competitions with Frets On Fire and Urban Terror, and some cool prizes for the winners.

ANASA, the local astronomy association had a telescope and a few laptops running Stellarium.

Approximately 300 people visited the game area during the whole day. At some point, there was a nice chaotic mess with loud heavy metal music, people screaming and cheering at the competing teams and the poor ANASA guys trying to explain the software at the demo booth.

Booths

As usual, we had a few tables where we distributed CDs and DVDs, and some t-shirts and stickers for sale. We gave also information about the different distributions and handed out some flyers.

Concert

The SFD event ended with a rock concert. At the concert, we had a laptop running Ubuntu with some cool videos.

The concert was awesome. There was a lot of people enjoying two excellent rock bands and two DJs that played non-stop until 2 AM.

After the concert, a group of tired, but happy, SFD staff members headed to a local bar for some beers and around 5 AM, with the first rays of sun, the second SFD Nicaragua event was officially over.

I want to end this post with something my daughter told me yesterday; “We showed (the Nicaraguan) people that great things can be done when we all work together”.

And that is what the SFD Nicaragua 2008 was all about; The community at its best, working together in harmony for a great cause.

Photos

More photos (and some videos) to come!

Live from SFD Nicaragua 2008

Update: Live streaming here.

After months of planning, the SFD Nicaragua 2008 event is finally here!

We’re on lunch break right now. A short summary of the event so far (and some photos – click to enlarge):

  • 3 conferences in the morning
  • +600 attendees to the conferences
  • +80 attendees to the workshops
  • 12 installs

More photos here.

Almost there

Tomorrow, September 20, more than 500 teams worldwide will celebrate the Software Freedom Day.

I want to wish all the teams good luck and send a big thank you to SFI for putting this event together. This years SFD is going to rock! If you haven’t heard of SFD before, please go to the teams page, find an event near you, and participate in the worlds greatest celebration of Free and Open Source Software.

Move your mouse with Freedom II

The climax of this years edition of the Software Freedom Day Nicaragua will be a rock concert on Saturday night titled “Move your mouse with Freedom II“.

We’ll have some of the hottest bands of the moment at the event:

  • Milly Majuc – This young band is composed of five musicians from the city of Masaya. Their music is a mix of funk, reggae, ska and psychedelic rock. They describe their music as “it sounds as when you’re happy”.  Watch their video: Gueguense War (live concert, low quality video).
  • Q69K –  A punk-rock trio formed in year 2000. They’re the most representative Nicaraguan band of this genre. They have been the opening act of several international bands over the years. Check out their video clip: La rutina cansa.
  • DJ Revuelta Sonora – The most famous DJ in Nicaragua. This performer has been part of several successful local rock bands. His latest video Tululu Mix has some cool tunes from the Nicaraguan Atlantic Coast.
  • DJ Carbono 14 – DJ and promoter of Free and Open Source Software. This young artist is a GNU/Linux user and member of the local openSuse community.

This concert is not only (a pretty good) excuse to relax and chill out after many months of hard work on the SFD event, it’s also a great opportunity to promote free culture and open standards.

A couple of weeks prior to the event, we’ve had a few informal meetings with the musicians where we discussed several topics, such as FOSS, community, open education and Creative Commons.

Jason Thompson, from Q69K, stated on a radio interview last week that Free Software is the only viable solution for a country like Nicaragua. “We want to invite everybody to the SFD event on September 20. We’re going to be there. We’re going to migrate to FOSS on that day. And so should you!”

DJ Revuelta Sonora, on the other hand, is one of the biggest promoters of free culture in Nicaragua. All their website is under a CC license, and we hope to continue to work closely with them after Software Freedom Day promoting free and open content and open standards.

SFD 2008 is only a few a days away… Are you ready to rock ‘n roll?

SFD 2008 Artwork

Byron Corrales, the art-guru from Ubuntu-ni, made the artwork for the SFD Nicaragua 2008 event. He did everything, literally. From blog buttons and web banners to CD covers, posters, flyers, stickers, presentation templates, and even a countdown banner!

The coolest thing is that all of his work has been made using Free Software (GIMP and Inkscape).

The artwork is licensed under the Creative Commons BY-NC-SA License. You can see all his artwork and download the sources here.

From all of us: Thank you so much Byron for all your hard work!!! Your artwork kicks some serious butt!!!

Tools for freedom

One of the greatest things about the Software Freedom Day is that you have the possibility to get involved and contribute in so many ways. And some of the contributions that you made to the SFD goes far beyond the event, becoming a substancial contribution that benefits the whole FOSS community.

One of these contributions is the SFD Registering System.

History

The SFD Registering System (SFD-REG) was developed in September 2007 for that years SFD Nicaragua event by Aldo Villagra, using RoR.

In 2008, Adolfo Fitoria, software developer and member of the Ubuntu-ni Community Council, adopted the project and improved the system for the SFD Nicaragua 2008 event.

The major improvements are; a nicer user interface (with assistance from our art guru, Byron Corrales), personalized on-line registrations, live statistics, separate modules for conferences and workshops, and much more.

The system has been released under the GNU General Public License version 3 (GPLv3). You can grab the source code here. Launchpad is being used for bug tracking. You can read more in Fitoria’s blog post:

Inscribite en los talleres del Software Freedom Day Nicaragua 2008 (English translation by Google)

The mandatory screenshots (click to enlarge image):

September: A month of freedom and independence

1856: A civil war broke out a few years back, between the conservatives from Granada and the liberals from the city of León. During the conflict, the conservatives got a mercenary army involved from North America, headed by William Walker. After obtaining military stability in the country, William Walker decided to take over control of the country and declare himself president with the idea to annex the region to the United States.

The national groups normally opposing each other decided to unite against this threat and with the support of the Central American armies they started a national war that saw its historical climax at the patriotic battle at Hacienda San Jacinto on September 14.

A small group of Nicaraguan army men was in charge of slowing down the troops of the filibuster. They were located at a small cattle ranch situated a couple kilometers north of Managua, waiting to repulse a North American army that was greater both in number and arms.

The battle started at dawn and the patriots took some hits but maintained their positions. Their arms were old and they frequently failed to function. An ingenious action, however, brought them a surprising victory. When the battle became more violent and the Nicaraguans lost their positions, the horses that were located at an enclosure on a hill within the farm were set free. Upon hearing this sound, the mercenaries thought cavalry reinforcements of the enemy had arrived and aghast the troops fled the scene.

The famous patriotic battle at San Jacinto signified the start of the filibuster’s defeat throughout the country. The battle took place on September 14, coincidentally one day before the independence celebrations.

Today, a new battle for freedom and independence is taking place in Nicaragua. A battle for social, economic and technological sustainability. A battle to substantially improve the conditions of development of our society, using free and open source tools in order to ensure a free and unrestricted access to information and knowledge.

On September 20, 152 years after the patriotic battle at Hacienda San Jacinto, a legion of freedom hackers are taking the Central American University by storm. The battle has just begun. Victory is ours.

Heading to the SFD 2008

The celebration of the worlds biggest FOSS event started early this year in Nicaragua.

We launched the SFD event on the Debian Day Nicaragua 08 (August 14) in the National University of Engineering (UNI), with an installfest, conferences and guest speakers from Guatemala, El Salvador, Norway, and of course, Nicaragua. We gave a lot of information about the upcoming SFD event and distributed some brochures.

Two days later, we visited the Central American University (UCA) in Managua, where the local GNU/Linux community had an information stand with flyers and brochures, and three laptops running Ubuntu, openSuse and Fedora. UCA is the venue of this year SFD.

On September 5 and 6, it was time for Comtech, the largest technological fair in Nicaragua. We had a stand promoting FOSS and the SFD, sponsored by the Ministry of Industry and Commercefont. It was a pretty cool event since we had the opportunity to reach a wider (and different) audience here.

This week, we had three more events. Two conferences about Free Software and a demostration of Ubuntu at the American University (UAM) in Managua on September 11. We distributed some Ubuntu CDs here. The next day we had two other conferences and some Frets on Fire jamming on the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua (UNAN) and the Nicaraguan Catholic University (UNICA).

Cool: Five more pre-SFD events and a lot of TV and radio interviews next week.

Über-cool: To see some young, enthusiastic and well organized local FOSS communities in some of the Universities we visited.

Future work: Made some important contacts with local businesses, Government officials and faculty staff at the Universities. There’s an increased interest in FOSS and 2009 will be crucial in the migration and implementation of FOSS in Nicaragua.

Bonus: One of the major local newspaper migrated this week to FOSS, specifically OpenOffice.org.

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