Tuesday, June 26, 2007

26th June DSL presentation by Kip

I came a bit late so I missed out on some of the tuff
Started off at 6.10 p.m by giving the technical background, defining DSL- Digital Subscriber line, explaining the underlying techcnolofies-lots of Acronyms like OFDM(Orthogonal Frequency division Multiplexing), QAM(Quadrature Amplitude Modulation), ISDN( Integrated Services Digital Network etc, and other stuff which require an Electrical Engineering degree to understand.He also gave an excuse for Telkom Kenya's exhorbitant rates- too much uptake and limited uplink bandwidth, yeah, yeah.

After that there was a Q&A session. discussed alternatives to DSL like CDMA2000 EV-DO(coming soon to a phone near you), Power line networks, iBurst, GPRS/EDGE. Once again this question came up- "When shall we have reasonable internet access for home users?" It was suggested for Ksh1000 per month but that was on the cheap side.

Monday, June 25, 2007

UoN Tech Day

So - this is probably like my first real blogged article - as in I sound like a journalist ;)

The UoN Tech Day is an Annual event - a day where computer science students showcase the final-year projects they've been building. A very cool concept that other universities need to adopt.
It's really weird ... whenever I go to these student project showcases, I come away very impressed at what I see ... yet it's hard to notice the same results in the real world :) I've always mused where these students go ...
The thing that struck me about the projects on Saturday was the completeness of most of the products. They were really thought through, and some are even marketable immediately.
Didn't get to see all of them (below is only a small section of what was on display). And sadly didn't carry a camera :( Looking for pictures ...

1. mobile maps for nairobi
Jessica has built an app for querying maps of nairobi from a mobile phone. The maps sit on a server, and she built a grid of points on that. The mobile app has a menu where you can select points of interest in Nbi eg Hilton, street names etc. The app is capable of zooming into the map and displaying the location (including a picture), and also giving directions from point A to B. Works over GPRS.
Very neat - Google are you listening ?
Real world - can probably link to live GIS data from someone like Geomaps or Ramani.

2. facial recognition
Billy uses a webcam to get video input of his facial features, and can then control his computer by moving his head around :) The application can control stuff like Windows (selecting menus etc), and is very cool when it comes to playing games (you can look around in Quake, Doom by turning your head). We must get him to present this at one of our sessions.

3. mobile blogging
Judith built a j2me app that allows bloggers to create posts via GPRS on their mobile phones. She built this on her own blogging platform. Wants to take it further - lots of options - eg SMS-based posts, linking to a platform like WordPress, and she's very keen on adding support for blogging images/photos etc.

4. interfacing car remote with a computer
Peter and Charity linked up the wireless remote of a toy car to their computer (managing to only blow one transistor in the process). The computer app can then control the car. They built in a recording function such that the car could be driven by the remote, and the whole sequence/motion could then be replayed by the computer alone. Self-driven cars.
This seems to be a popular project with all universities - got Titus very excited. I think they need to take it to the next level - robotic competitions, or things like the DARPA challenge - that would be so cool if we built that.

Very fun day - trip to the toy store :)
Eric Magutu - a lot of these guys need to join skunkworks .....

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Next Meeting - 26th June 2007

Kip will be talking about ADSL, Broadband stuff in general.

As usual - Wananchi Online training room - 1st floor, Loita Hse. 6pm.
Tuesday, 26th June.

We hope to have Wesonga from Peupe to come in the very near future and guys from the recent UoN Tech Day exhibition

We're also still looking for a lead to roll with the "Linux for beginners" series.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Annual Tech day at UoN

UoN School of Computing will holding their annual Tech day this Saturday (22nd June). There'll be interesting project presentations by students and talks by people from industry.

Venue: UoN Chiromo campus, Millenium Hall
Time: 0900hrs.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Meeting: 12th June

Jean-Antoine BORD did a presentation of pajamanation.com.

If you have some skills and feel you'd like to make some money on the side, or for guys in campus, while living cheaply in campus :), sign up and have a look.

It has a simple enough interface to look for 'micro' jobs (typically lasting for less than one week). Lots of job categories, with the more active ones being IT related - web design, logo design, IT consultancy.

www.pajamanation.com is also going regional, and will be looking for people to spearhead that effort.

Apart from working from home in pajamas, he talked about setting up an ISP observatory - to act as a sort of watchdog and ensure quality provision of internet services is done locally.

Quote of the Week:

May the FOSS be with you. (Gituma found it somewhere online :) )

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

ipv6 meeting recap

*** Presentations available at http://www.kenic.or.ke/v6

From: Michuki Mwangi
Subject: [Skunkworks] IPv6 URLs
Date: June 6, 2007 10:32:10 AM GMT+03:00

Further to my presentation yesterday evening on IPv6 the following links
will shed more light on some of the issues discussed.

* Comparison of IPv7 proposals


* Geoff Houston's site (see second presentation on IPv4 Exhaustion
prediction) presentation done at Ripe 54, 9th May 2007


* Randy Bush's presentation on NAT


* Reason for removal of IPv6 checksum header



Michuki Mwangi

Monday, June 4, 2007

Next Meeting

Next meeting is tomorrow (Tuesday 5th June)
Topic is Migrating to IPv6 and will be presented by Michuki Mwangi KENIC and Patrick Muiruri of Wananchi Online, now that Vincent will not be able to do so.
Meeting starts at 6pm at the Wananchi Online Training Room - 1st Floor Loita House.