The following are some questions that may arise in your mind. For your kind information these have been answered below in the most appropriate manner.
What is the purpose of the meeting of ILUG-Cochin?
The meeting is the regular meeting (on the 4th Sunday of every month) of the Indian Libre User Group-Cochin, ( previously Indian Linux User Group ). The Meeting is basically a platform for interaction among people from all walks of life who are interested in learning and sharing information thereby helping others with regard to Swathanthra Software. ILUG-Cochin has been conducting this meeting every month since 1997.
Ok I have heard about linux, what is a Linux user group/lug?
Just like we have/had computer groups/ clubs the GNU/ Linux User Group and other Free Software Groups were formed for the purpose of spreading awareness about Free Software,and mainly to help people use Free Software. Of course the entire Swathanthra Software concept is based on a community framework. The users are definitely part of the community and they have formed groups like lug,fsug,glug etc. for their help and support. ILUG-Cochin is not a part of the Linux Users Groups like “Indian Linux User Group” (ILUG). ILUG-Cochin is a Free Software User Group.
So do you help people adopt Free software, or only help existing users?
Yes we help people convert to Free software and also help all other people who want to gain any sort of information regarding free software. Although our main agenda is free software, our ultimate aim is to create a self sustaining community that is free from the bondage and the dangers of unwanted legal restrictions. So we discuss all aspects that are related to our goal in some way or the other. Naturally we also have a lot of healthy constructive socializing.
What else do you provide?
We don’t provide anything we just share it for the benefit of the community. So you can expect Free Software resources like Software on CD/DVD and learning material and material which have been contributed by the members.
Is ILUG-Cochin a registered organization?
No, ILUG-Cochin is a not for profit voluntary organization. It has not been registered presently.
Ok, So is there any membership fee for ILUG-Cochin, or compulsory contribution?
This is one of the most common questions that come up. No there is no fee or money of any sort involved. (Members sponsor the tea and snacks during the meetings). Anyone in the society is entitled to be a member of the ILUG-Cochin. What we believe is that information needs to be available to everyone and everyone has the freedom to use it. Hence we have no restrictions whatsoever in any aspect.
Being a normal PC user in what way would the meeting benefit me?
We give importance to values of Freedom and truth and the basic principle that knowledge and information needs to be free for everyone. Hence what people gain from attending the meeting is the basic ideas of how we can survive in the coming years with the latest technologies and how we can use the technologies by following the principles of truth and freedom and ultimately use it for the progress of our country and the benefit of mankind. And most importantly share their knowledge with others and get information for themselves.
Linux has not really caught up, So i dont think the meetings are really useful unless things improve?
Well, the question is the answer itself, how will things improve unless people communicate and coordinate to make better software. The question also carries a misrepresentation of Linux being referred to as an OS when actually GNU/Linux is the OS. So in order to enhance your knowledge about Swathanthra Software and in order to be part of the community to create software that we want for our needs, to create a self sustaining community, the meetings are important.
When was ILUG-Cochin started ?
In August 1997.
What sort of activities have you done over these years?
A lot, We have conducted seminars, presentations, demonstrations throughout Kerala, to spread the message of Swathanthra Software. We also impart education to people, and have helped several people build a career. We have also provided full fledged solutions over the years to different people and oragnizations and helped them convert entirely to Swanthanthra Software. The foundation for all these have been the meetings we have been conducting without fail from 1997.
Do you have a mailing list?
Definitely, a really active mailing list with people from all over the world.
OK, I already use Free Software and have enough knowledge of it. The meetings are not relevant for me.
Well again you are missing out on the aspect that the community is the basis of all this and hence the interactions with the community are most important. The ILUG-Cochin meetings provide the platform for the most effective form of community gathering and hence also paves the way for self sustaining community.
Is there a chance for me to get a job, if I am involved with the ILUG-Cochin? Since ILUG-Cochin has been active for lot of years there must be lot of contacts.
No, do not expect to get a job, as a consequence of being active with ILUG-Cochin. The reason being that, the sole purpose of ILUG-Cochin isn’t that. ILUG-Cochin’s main priority is to provide education and spread awareness. Of course one has to find a job to sustain himself and the community. Hence the interactions with the different people and the members of the ILUG-Cochin will definitely increase your chance of getting a job on the FOSS platform. Of course companies worldwide have already recognized the importance of the community and are giving special importance to job aspirants who have been involved with the community. Although ILUG-Cochin doesn’t endorse any job related services, it of course advertises or informs its members of any openings in the FOSS field that it might know of. What we are seeing here is a community that brings together people and helps them in appropriate situations in whatever way it can.
What happens during the meetings ?
There will be an Agenda and a Technical Presentation for each meeting. The topic of the agenda will be discussed in detail. The technical presentation will be one that caters to different sections of users ranging from the novice to the expert, but more importance is given to novice users.Meeting ends with the question and answer session.
Does the Indian Libre User Group discuss only GNU/Linux?
No it discusses everything that comes under the category of Free and Open Source Software. So definitely we will consider discussing other OS like GNU Hurd, FreeBSD, GNU Solaris, GNU Darwin etc..
Where is this meeting held?
Jay’s Internet Club
IInd Floor, AMI Trust Bldg,
(Behind Allappat Super Shoppe,
On top of SBT Treasury wing)
Who is prime authority of the ILUG-Cochin?
Since its a community we wouldn’t mention anything as prime authority, but every group/ activity needs a coordinator. Present coordinator(s) can be contacted at contact at ilug-cochin dot org
Why Did you change your Name to Indian Libre User Group-Cochin from Indian Linux User Group ?
There is a detailed post on this here http://www.ilug-cochin.org/why-libre