I am from Hospet, close to the historical ruins of Hampi, the site of
medieval Vijayanagar Empire. I did my schooling and Bachelor in Science
(B.Sc) from Hospet (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hospet). I then did my
post graduation, MCA from Bharathidasan University, Trichy. My interest
as a kid was to become a doctor. But I got interested with computers
after I saw my brother play with a small pocket computer that my dad
bought for him.
My job career started from International Institute of Information
Technology (IIIT), Hyderabad in 2002. I was a project associate in
Anusaaraka (English to Hindi Machine Translation system). I was
involved in developing the user interface to display the output in
Indian languages. Working under the project Anusaaraka introduced me to
computing in Indian languages. It was a good learning experience for me
working with encoding schemes, fonts, etc. Ever since then, I have been
interested in Indian language computing. The other thing that I was
introduced to working at IIIT was about the open source movement. The
open source movement is a large movement of computer scientists,
programmers, and other computer users that advocates unrestricted
access to the source code of software. Openness in the field of
information technology got me interested in working for projects which
use open source technologies.
I have been working at Servelots Infotech, Bangalore since March 2004
when I joined Servelots as a Sarai consultant. Ever since then, I have
been involved in the development of Pantoto which is an open source
CMS. As a Sarai consultant I have been working with Srinivasa Raghavan
developing Indic toolset (http://mail.sarai.net:8080/indic). Some of
the tools developed during the course of consultancy are the Indic IME
toolbar (http://indicime.mozdev.org) for Mozilla based browsers,
Morphological analyzer for Indian languages (http://tinyurl.com/a7ps8),
conversion utilities from ISCII-UNICODE-UTF8
Working at Servelots has been a good experience for me at different
levels. The first level of experience has been working with different
NGO's that pursue activities to promote the interests of the poor,
protect the environment, provide basic social services, or undertake
community development, etc. Being involved in the development of
Pantoto communities software and the different NGO's that I work with,
has gotten me excited about the reach of Information Technology.
Information Technology that can reach the common non-IT savvy people by
providing tools to help manage their communities. And the skills of
providing Indian language support to these tools fits really well here
because we are looking at the common man/community who can use the
information technology to meet their needs. My responsibilities at
Servelots range from development, managing the team, discussing and
implementing new technologies, re-engineering the product architecture
wherever necessary etc.
The Indic project has been supported by Sarai, Delhi, at the Centre for
Studies in Developing Societies. Being a part of this project has given
me an opportunity to contribute to the community by providing a toolset
for Indian languages. The tool is a Indic firefox extension, which
allows the users to create content in Indian languages in web pages.
Using this tool, users can create/share information in Indian languages
across the world wide web.
I have participated at various events. I was a speaker at the
was developed for Mozilla based browsers. This event was held during
December 2005 in Bangalore. The focus of the talk was on identifying
the needs of the people in the local context to use web based
applications, how this tool helped meet the needs, some technical
aspect of how the tool is implemented, the people who have used the
tool and enhanced it for their own requirement, etc.
I also gave a talk at Mount Carmel College (MCC), Bangalore propagating
and motivating students about the power of open source software.