Khadi Board visits the GNU/Linux installfest at Technopark today ..

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ashik salahudeen

Sep 4, 2008, 2:00:32 PM9/4/08
Hi all,

We at the installfest were lucky enough to have that heady feeling that accompanies a picture of FOSS working its magic and people benefitting from it. Today we had a visit from Khadi board.

Khadi board has been using Fedora and Ubuntu to run their office for quiet sometime now. They had to obey a ruling from the government which mandated the use of FOSS. Instead of waiting around and shoving miles of red tape over it , they went into action and started using FOSS. Of course they ran into problems. They went to CDAC for help. Unfortunately , its another government body and they proved it. CDAC started bull shitting , promising stuff and delivering nothing , demanding ever increasing amounts of money for it and being secretive about it. Frustrated , the people from Khadi board turned to the FOSS community and voila !! things started to go right. Their major problem was Malayalam rendering and input which was solved by the leading Malayalam language computing group , Swathanthra Malayalam Computing ( ) . Its members provided support to Khadi board, over web. And Khadi board kept coming back to the community which never let them down.

Today they were here to offer support for FOSS communities , in their own words " We saved over fifteen lakh rupees on OS licensing costs alone. Donating money as sponsorship to the FOSS communities and the events that they organize is nothing com[ared to the help and support they provided us"

And you know what ? We are proud of them . We are proud of ( and to be the )  members of FOSS community that helped this organization which is a beacon of hope to the dying traditional weavers community.

Khadi board is going to be the first public sector organization in Kerala to go completely paperless. And they did this because the FOSS community was right behind them supporting them. Not the government , not the so called software and research organizations sposored and funded by government, but the community who owns and maintains FOSS.

A video that we managed to capture (pardon the poor video quality and awful reporting ) :

സ്വതന്ത്ര മലയാളം കമ്പ്യൂട്ടിങ്ങ് - എന്റെ കമ്പ്യൂട്ടറിന് എന്റെ ഭാഷ
വെബ് താള്:
ഗൂഗിള് കൂട്ടം‍:
സാവന്ന സംരംഭം:
ഐആര്‍സി ചാനല്‍: ലെ #smc-project
ഓര്‍ക്കൂട്ട് കൂട്ടം :

James Mathew

Sep 5, 2008, 9:36:56 AM9/5/08
2008/9/4 ashik salahudeen <>:
> Hi all,

> Khadi board has been using Fedora and Ubuntu to run their office for quiet
> sometime now. They had to obey a ruling from the government which mandated

Some clarifications regarding Ashik's mail:

1. <q>They had to obey a ruling from the government which mandated
> the use of FOSS.</q>

Acutally, Khadi Board was well on the right track before the Govt
mandated the use of Free Software.

2. Regarding the attitude of CDAC:
According to my knowledge, eventhough CDAC wasn't very helpful with
enabling Malayalam support on Fedora6, we should be thankful to them
in the sense that they laid the right foundation on which we could all
build upon. If they had chosen a proprietary OS, that would've been
the end of it...atleast for quite some time.

3. Regarding Malayalam support assistance to KKVIB:
Khadi Board had approached SPACE for enabling malayalam after their
hard luck with CDAC. SPACE provided them with a solution with all the
features they requested. It was after they used it for some time that
they realized the need for some more features, which was supplied by
SMC. Also let me clarify that i'm not belittling the efforts of SMC in
anyway...Just trying to get the facts right.

Ashik, Please correct me if my observations are wrong.




ashik salahudeen

Sep 5, 2008, 12:46:43 PM9/5/08
All, apologies for top posting and cross posting ,

Jamesetta ,

I didnt know that Khadi board was on track before the government ruling. I was under the impression that it was the case. So i was wrong there.

As far as CDAC's OS of choice was concerned , after my experience with CDAC i must say that they simply chose what they had at the moment. I dont trust them or their policies anymore. Their stupidity is evident from their recent doings regarding localization.

I was referring to the FOSS community as a whole which includes SPACE .

In fact your mail is very relevant in this context because even though i mentioned FOSS community i named only SMC and didnt mention SPACE. I should have. Thanks for pointing it out and correcting me .

I specifically mentioned SMC's work  because i knew about it first hand.  I was in no way trying to avoid SPACE :)

In the video Abhilash acknowledges SPACE , SMC and pretty much anyone who helped them on their way to freedome...

The contact with Khadi board was very important for me because FOSS has transcended its 'secure server' image and has proved to be a productive desktop / office solution.

Kudos to SPACE and everyone who made this possible.

2008/9/5 James Mathew <>
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