Sun Campus Ambassador

Its almost 3 months into my term as the Sun Campus Ambassador of my college. Though i have great plans, i could not put much into implementation due to a lot of issues I had to face. After I returned to my college after Induction training at Bangalore, about 10 working days were lost as we had an unexpected holiday during the last week of August. This caused a cramped and tight schedule for the remaining time and everyone was very busy. With the last working day scheduled at the end of third week of September, I virtually had about a month’s time to do some useful activities. I was unable to arrange sessions as the college closed after the last working day. In the available time, I couldn’t schedule much of events as I couldn’t catch even a few of the busy people in my college. 🙁

Still I was able to do some useful things. I had an informal meet with the Sun club members and had a long discussion on what kind of activities we can have in the year. I also conducted a small-scale intro session with not much people on September 3,2008 – the day of Ganesh Chathurthi. During that session, I talked about the CA program, SAI, proposed activities of the Sun club and how students could benefit. I also introduced various Sun technologies. Jayalakshmi, my friend and classmate, gave a short talk on “Free Open Source Software” and Anugraha handled a NetBeans intro/demo session. Then myself and G.R. Karthik introduced the audience to OpenSolaris.

To keep the audience involved and cheered up, we screened the legendary “Big Buck Bunny” movie and had them in splits. We also had a demo of Compiz fusion on OpenSolaris and had a few dropping jaws 🙂

In another session, I planned for a small install-fest of Free Open Source Software OSes – OpenSolaris 2008.05, Ubuntu Hardy Heron, Fedora 9 and Debian etch. We had a reasonable turnout and I happily demoed the installation on bare metal and also on Virtual Box. I enrolled a lot of people on the Sun club mailing list during this meet. The audience were clearly impressed and wanted to have more such sessions.

My biggest achievement till now is conducting the Software Freedom Day celebrations for the fifth consecutive year at my college. More about it on another post on this blog

With the Code for Freedom contest for this year announced, I am all geared uo to participate in it and do a good contribution. Of course, my role as a campus ambassador would be to introduce a lot of people to this great contest and motivate, help them participate.

So, as soon as my college reopens on November 17, 2008 (My birthday :-)) for the next semester, I intend to go full throttle with my activities and do a great job as a CA. I have planned to hold full-day sessions that will be enlightening to the audience and give OSUM a big kick to get it up and running. I want people to know about SAI and make use of it to get certified. There are great dreams and I want to make them a reality. Looking ahead for the great time ahead! 🙂

My Picasa Web Album is at

I have been selected by Sun Microsystems as the Sun Campus Ambassador of my college TCE, Madurai. I will be trained by Sun and then I will have to evangelise Sun technologies in my college. Actually there is more that I can do than just evangelising, conducting demos and workshop sessions. I was told “There is no limit to what a Sun Campus Ambassador can do”. Krithika, whom I succeed was excellent as a Sun Campus Ambassador and I hope to continue her legacy and if possible do better.

The story behind my selection is a big one. Ever since I started participating in the Sun club activities, I always dreamed of becoming a Sun ambassador. During last November I was suddenly asked by my HOD whether I would like to become the next CA. As the question was so unexpected, I couldn’t answer and I just said I don’t know.

Then in January, HOD and the staff selected 5 people from my department who would be the Sun club coordinators after Krithika’s term ended and one of those 5 would be selected as the next CA. I was disappointed but decided to carry on gamely with it. Those 5 people successfully conducted the Sun Guru programme successfully in my college.

But suddenly in April, Krithika sent an email to all the Sun club members that the next Sun CA was to be selected and that anyone who is interested can apply for it by sending their resumes. I was so glad and immediately sent my resume. 🙂

Three people were selected to be interviewed by Sun from those who had sent their resumes, and I was one among them. The other two were Anugraha (one of those 5 selected coordinators) and Ashmitha Srinivas who were my classmates.

We had a telephonic interview in May for about half an hour each. My interview was really a great experience. I was asked about what I knew about what a Sun CA has to do. I had known about it because I was in touch with Krithika for about an year. I was also asked about the Sun technologies I was familiar with and I answered Java, NetBeans and OpenSolaris. I was asked about configuring the network connection of a computer which I knew thanks to Krithika. Then I was asked about the activities of Sun club and the GNU/Linux group in my college and how I could improve the activities of both.

I was also asked about my views on Free Open Source Software and proprietary softwares. Then I was told that ‘There is no limit to what I can do as a Sun Campus Ambassador’. I was told that the results of the interview would be out in two weeks time.

After two weeks, I got a mail from Sun informing me that I have been selected as the CA for my college. My joy had no bounds. Then Mr. Rajesh Uma Shankar from Sun got in touch with me and informed me that he’ll be my coordinator.

I got in touch with a few other Sun CA-elects and shared our experiences. Now I am scheduled to go to Bangalore to attend the Sun Campus Ambassador Induction Training Programme for three days. Gary Serda, the global CA head and a Vice President of MySQL(Sun’s latest acquisition) are going to be present for that programme and it’s really gonna be a lifetime experience.

I am very much looking forward with oodles of excitement! 🙂

More later……