Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Bar Camping Phenomenon in India

Bar Camping is a phenomenon that has taken the geek world by storm outside India and has made its entry just last year in India when Delhi hosted the first Bar Camp in the country.

For the novice, a bar camp is a spin off on the original tech conferences that are routinely held in the tech-world. Tech-conferences generally are loathed by a majority of geekdom ( that includes me ) as they charge a hefty fee ranging between Rs. 3500 to Rs 10000 for attending the conference. Moreover participation is limited to the invitees only. Not everybody interested or has something to contribute can participate. Lastly, there is always a 90% chance that the speakers invited at these conferences will bore you to death with their monologue speeches that stretch unto the end of time.

So out of Poison comes Ambrosia....as narrate our epics. Bar camps were born as a result of the repulsion generated by these tech-conferences.

Bar Camp is an ad-hoc "un-conference" born from the desire for people to share and learn in an open environment. It is an intense event with discussions, demos and interaction from attendees. The chief unwritten rule of bar camps require that you come prepared to share something with the other attendees. Attendance is open to anyone with something to contribute or with the desire to learn. Everybody is a participant and an active one at that. Everybody is expected to give a presentation or at least help give one. What's more ....The presentations are also placed on the web for the benefit of those who could not attend. All Bar Camps have dedicated ‘Wikis’ - websites that allow users to add or modify content, giving information about the event, with blogs being used to woo techies.

Delhi hosted the first ‘desi Bar Camp’, with 75 participants at the Adobe office. Staying true to the US concept, it was open to all and free of cost. “There were no big-ticket speakers, so anyone could sign up and make presentations,” said organiser Amit Ranjan. The success of the Delhi Bar Camp made news in the blogosphere, and soon, city-specific groups started their own camps. Now Chennai, Hyderabad and Bangalore have joined the fray.

The next immediate Bar Camp is on April 8th & 9th 2006 at Chennai, India at Ramanujam Computing Centre, Anna University, Chennai.

There is a simulataneous one being held on April 8th at Hyderabad too at IIIT, Hyderabad.

That one will be followed by one in Bangalore on the 22nd of April at Yahoo! Software Development India Pvt. Ltd.,4th floor, "Esquire Center",#9, M.G. Road, Bangalore - 560 001.

For all you guys who want to savour the occasion, get registered at http://barcamp.org/BarCampChennai
http://barcamp.org/BarCampHyderabad
http://barcamp.org/BarCampBangalore

All Bar Camp venues and dates are let known at http://barcamp.org/

News sites
DNA India
Economic Times

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