30 days blogging challenge – Failed with good results


On march 2017, I decided to write at least one post, on this blog for the next 30 days. I know few writers write on their blog daily like Vaa.Manikandan, Pa.Raghavan, Jeyamohan. I thought I too can start to write more, as I had too many ideas and thoughts running on mind. Wanted to share here. Hence started.

Initial few days, went well. But, after the second week, felt it so tough. To write something, I had to stay awake extra in the nights. Eventhough, I stay awake and hitting the keyboard, I did not get any ideas to write. I already wrote everything, what I was thinking for few months. RTI, Consumer communities, Project Ideas, Bigdata etc. I could not write something, for the sake of just to write something daily. So dropped the posting often.

I failed on 30 day blogging challenge.

source : http://poppetx.blogspot.in/2015_05_01_archive.html

18 posts for 30 days. It is near 1 post for 2 days. Not bad.

I should have eaten the frog as the first task in the morning. But, writing was not my priority.  I missed to make it as a part of daily rituals. Writing really takes more time then we think. Need to read and learn before writing something about. Need fact searches and good linking. It took 30-45 min to write a post.

Though, I failed to write on 30 days, found it very helpful, to organize my thoughts. Few posts evolved into action. I submitted 3 RTI. Had deep discussions about the consumer cooperative community with few friends. Few project ideas impressed few contributors and they completed 3 projects. We had an Hackathon too.

Without writing the ideas, these would never happen. Thanks to the great blogging platform and you, the readers. With your wishes over email, comment, phone and in-person, the dreams are becoming true.

I am good at dreaming. All the ideas like Kaniyam.com, FreeTamilEbooks.com were just dreams few years ago. When I wrote the ideas in this blog, I felt the transformation and evolution for the ideas into action. When likeminded people read the blogs, they share their helping hands to give live to the ideas. Tons of thanks for all the contributors.

I feel more powered, by writing in the blog. I quit Facebook, one year ago. From then, I use blogging and mailing lists as the only channels to express my thoughts. They give great results and actions.

I will keep writing regularly. May be two weeks per week. Exploring different patterns to find a suitable one for me.

Once again, I thank you. I request you to start writing in a blog. It is free. Start using wordpress.com . Blog all your thoughts and ideas. It will take you to heights and lead to different worlds, you can not imagine before.

blogging க்கான பட முடிவு

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/aaron_davis/13558173444 CC-BY-SA

Open Source Projects for Tamil – Hackathon – Sunday – April 23 – Chennai


Are you looking for an interesting project to do?
Can you share some time and your programming skills for Tamil Language?
Do you like to meet the fellow open source contributors in Chennai?

Here is a Hackathon for Open Source Projects for Tamil.

Date : April 23, 2017, Sunday
Time : 10.00 am – 5.00 pm

Venue :
Manavai Mustafa Memorial,
A E 103, 6th Street, 10th Main Road
Anna nagar West, Chennai – 600040

Contact : T Shrinivasan 98417 9546 Eight

Send a mail to tshrinivasan@gmail.com
to confirm your participation.

Wondering what projects you can do?

Pick anything from here.

https://goinggnu.wordpress.com/2017/03/03/project-ideas-part-1-looking-for-contributors/
https://goinggnu.wordpress.com/2017/04/22/project-ideas-part-2-looking-for-contributors/
https://goinggnu.wordpress.com/2017/03/04/let-us-create-maps-in-tamil/

or, you can come with your own ideas and implement there.

Come, let us contribute to Tamil with our programming skills.

Project Ideas – Part 2 – Looking for contributors


Here are few more project ideas.

1. mobile/web app to record voice for wikisoure – Show a word, record it, upload to commons, link back to wiktionary.

2. mobile/web app to record audio books  – FreeTamilEbooks needs audio books too

3. wordpress to android app convertor – Why cant we convert a wordpress site as android app with RSS feeds?

4. epub to apk convertor – Let us publish ebooks as mobile apps too.

5. blog to epub convertor – fix, add images
https://github.com/sathia27/blog2ebook
Add a feature to download images and add them to ebooks.

6. Daily mobi files for tamil newspapers
Crawl newspapers daily, make mobi, send them to kindle in email daily.

7. Send to kindle – feature for FTE
Add Send to kindle feature to FreeTamilEbooks.com site

8. Lime survey – SAAS – alternate to google forms
Explore limesurvey and make it as alternate for google forms.

9. Collect politicians info and release as app, site

How can we collect all politicians details as education, assets etc and publish for public?

http://tshrinivasan.blogspot.in/2015/12/how-to-collect-details-of-TN-politicians.html

10. setup ELK for tamil literature search, build a search engine on top of it

Explore using ElasticSearch and Kibana for Tamil Text analysis.

11. fix android app to record audio for wiktionary –

https://github.com/Atul22/wikiAudio
done at https://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/WikiConference_India_2016/Chandigarh_Hackathon

12. Analyse tamil tv/radio show audio, find how many english words are used/hour
This paper may help
https://www.ee.columbia.edu/~dpwe/papers/Wang03-shazam.pdf
https://mail.python.org/pipermail/chennaipy/2017-March/001429.html
Contact Ganesh for python implementation of this algo

13. gui for voice record/upload – wiktionary

https://github.com/tshrinivasan/voice-recorder-for-tawictionary

This needs a GUI version for windows users

14. gui for csv uploader

https://github.com/tshrinivasan/tools-for-wiki/tree/master/csv-uploader-wiktionary

This needs a GUI for windows users

15. gui for open-tamil font convertor

https://github.com/Ezhil-Language-Foundation/open-tamil

Need a web application or GUI for all features of open-tamil

16. mobile app to teach tamil – pollachi nasan

http://tshrinivasan.blogspot.in/2015/03/blog-post_9.html

17. wiki massuser create

Sometimes, we need to create 100s of users on wikipedia, for any training/event. Currently, only 6 users can be created. Admins can create multiple users, one by one. Automate this process using mechanize and beautifulsoup.

18. OCR4wikisource web version using google vision api

Rewrite https://github.com/tshrinivasan/OCR4wikisource with google vision api and give a web interface.

19. create a command line TTS from the source of a mobile TTS app.

Here is a open source TTS mobile app for tamil.

http://www.iitm.ac.in/donlab/tts/androidapp.php

Register and download the source and apk.
The voice named “Naveen” is good.

There are many c files in the folder
SSNFlitehtsTamil/app/src/main/jni

Can you compile those files and give a binary file as a command line tool?

Explore these code and share your thoughts on how to convert this as a
desktop/command line application so that we can use it in our
computers.

20. Create a GUI app for bulk photo uploader for http://commons.wikimedia.org

https://github.com/tshrinivasan/mediawiki-uploader

Dark everywhere in my KDE Desktop


Few days back, bought a 21.5 inch LED IPS Slim Monitor, to get rid of neck pain.
https://n1.sdlcdn.com/imgs/c/i/r/HP-22es-Display-54-6-SDL769500402-1-8965d.png

தொடர்புடைய படம்

It is really nice one. I am enjoying the good big display. Dont know why I missed such a big display for so many years. The ease it gives for neck and eyes are awesome. I strongly suggest you, to go for a big monitor, if you are working for many hours in laptop.

Once the monitor is setup, I felt that it is emitting much of brightness and contrast. Reduced both. Still getting high illumination from it, as most of the websites, applications use huge white background.

But, reading and writing in terminal(konsole) is a breeze, as it has dark, black background. Suddenly, remembered, the black, dark themes. I was always wondering, who in the world will love these dark, black backgrounds. When I tried few years ago, it was not nice for my laptop screen. But, this time, for big screens, the dark themes are a great gift to our eyes.

Sharing few screenshots of my desktop.

KDE Desktop

Firefox

Chrome

LibreOffce

Atom Editor

SimpleNote

Konsole

 

All these dark theme applications, look very cool on the big screen. Enjoying all the works now. Tons of thanks for the people who found that the dark theme is good for big screens and for the people who made the great dark themes for KDE and other individual applications.

Project Idea – Automation script needed to download British Library books


British Library has already digitized many Indian books (including Tamil, Bengali and other languages) and uploaded them in their website.[1]  The books are split in separate pages in .tiff format, so, we need a script to automate the process of transferring them in Internet Archive/Commons as a single pdf/djvu file, so that we can use it in Wikisource.

https://i1.wp.com/eap.bl.uk/images/header_main.jpg
Got this request from my Wikipedia friend Bodhisattwa Mandal
I checked few Tamil Books.
Example :
http://eap.bl.uk/database/overview_item.a4d?catId=164997;r=18467

“Access for research purposes only” is the license for this file.

But, it seems that these books are very old and already in public domain.
We have all the permissions to download them and publish anywhere.
Now, we need a program in python or any language to download all the books, magazines from the sire http://eap.bl.uk and to provide them as individual PDF files or a zip file of images.
Once, if we get the PDF or image files, we can do OCR them using google OCR and get text out of them. Then, we can publish both images and text for further proofreading and fixing to WikiSource sites, using OCR4WikiSource.
if you are interested to contribute for this project, reply with your details in comment or send mail to tshrinivasan@gmail.com
Thanks.

Looking for Commercial Tamil Translators


I got a request for translating slideshows in Tamil for the following subjects, from a college professor.

  1. Embedded Systems
  2. Discrete Structures

The Embedded systems subject has electronics and programming concepts. The Discrete Structures has full of high level mathematics. Each book have around 500 pages.

The style can be with mixed of tamil and English(for tech terms). It is a paid job. We may get more content on various subjects to translate, if we complete this.

If you are interested in this translation work, comment here or send an email to tshrinivasan@gmail.com with your profile and translation experience information.

Share this info to your known Tamil Translators.

 

Co-operative business model – few thoughts -2


Last sunday, met Mr.Ganesh to discuss about the co-operative business model. Here are the points we discussed.

This is a plan to do a business with co-operative model. Any one can buy shares to be a part of the business. We can buy the products from the source itself so that we can buy for low cost and in high numbers.

https://goinggnu.wordpress.com/2017/03/18/can-we-build-co-operative-organizations-for-consumer-community/

read here for the initial thoughts.

Need to plan on the following.

1. Product to sell
2. Place
3. Workers/Salary
4. Storage place/Electricity
5. Advertisements
6. Product selling cost
7. Membership cost
8. Return of the loans
9. Benifits for the members

Investments:
To start operating, we need investment.

We can get investments, via
1. Bank loan
2. Personal Investments

Heard that if we form a co-operative society, government will assign a person as secretary, to monitor the operations and will give some fund as loan. Need to read the laws for co-ops societies, to know more on this. If you know anything on this, please share the details.

Management:
We need to get volunteers or hire some people to do all the management activities.

Need to fix the following
selecting people
roles
how long they can serve for the role
laws to solve any issues/reports on them

Transparency:
Transparency is one of the key pillars of this system.
All the buying prices, selling prices, profits, loss, bills, sales, accounts should be open for public. All the processes should be recored and kep onine immediately.

Buying:
we may not able to buy from the source, aka farmers directly, But, we can buy from the fitst level agents. Need to plan for buying from the source/manufacturers itself, to eleminate man in the middle.

Quality:
Need to fix Quality levels, QA process, people, inspections in all the levels.

Cost of the products:
The cost of the selling products should be lower for members. Non-members should buy for little higher and below market rate.

Market Survey:
Need to do a market survey, to choose the products to sell. It may vary on the place of the shops. We can do it ourself or outsource for some marketing agency.

Share cost and Dividend:
How to calculate share cost and dividend?
How many shares can one person buy?
How to make the share holders not to trouble the business operations?

Like this, there are so many things to be discussed, fixed. Need to create a strong system with all if’s and but’s. All the created laws should manage the entire system, regardless of the people involved in any position.

Started to discuss about the co-operative business model with friends. Have to discuss with some local business people. They may see it from different angel. May be as competitive. Hope they will give some interesting inputs. Will share after some discussions.

Are there any books available on how the co-operative business models are operating? How the OK Co-operative business are working?

Please share your thoughts on this business model.

will you be a member of such business model?

YouRTI.in – submit RTI anonymously


Few days back, wrote about search for an organization that can help to file RTI anonymously.

https://goinggnu.wordpress.com/2017/03/09/is-it-possible-to-create-a-system-for-anonymous-rti/

Found it today. It is http://www.YouRTI.in

 

 

It helps to file RTI online for free. All the requests are anonymous. They file rti on behalf of us. Once got the results, they publish it online. If you need privacy on your rti requests and for requests, you have to pay them.

I am wondering how they are doing as service for free and how they handle the threats from unknown people.

Tons of thanks for their services. Filed two rti on their site. They conduct rti awareness program in Hyderabad recently. Looking for such an event in Chennai.

If you are interested in such event, share the details about the people who can help on this. Let us create more awareness on RTI to public.

Can we build Co-operative organizations for consumer community ?


The one big cause of constantly raising cost for the food, groceries and other goods is “Man in the Middle”.

In india, a farmer can not fix the rate for his product, where the oil companies fix their rates and change them frequently. The price for the agriculture products are fixed by the brokers and agents.

We, as consumers can not reach the farmers and buy the stuff from them. Bacause

  1. we can not buy in large scale
  2. we can not store food products in large scale
  3. we have to travel a lot to buy directly from farmers. We wont travel 20-100 km to buy 1kg of rice.

But, somehow, if we buy the goods from the farmers, we will get them for very low cost and farmers will get high income as there is no man in the middle.

How can we achieve this?

In my native, Kanchipuram, there are many silk manufacturer’s society, milk sellers society. Where the group of people join together, manufacture and sell something.

Like this, why cant we form a consumer’s society?

Imagine this. We all consume many things regularly. If we all form a society/organization by contributing a small amount of money as subscription fees, we can solve all the 3 issues mentioned above.

With the huge money,

  1. we can buy in large scale
  2. we can build storages
  3. we can create many local shops so that members can walk and buy stuff

The management of the organization should be transparent. All the decisions should be well acknowledged by the members.

This is how the open source community is building software. When we need something, we join together, discuss transparently, take decisions, roll out our sleeves, get hands dirty with keyboard, write code, fix issues and done.

Similarly, here is a social problem. We need to buy directly from farmers. How can we achieve this? Building consumer society, connecting with other consumer societies across the state/country will be a good solutions.

Imagine, today there is a consumer society is started. What should bethe guidelines for that? How much can we set the membership cost? It needs some initial money to set a shop, storage, salary for people, electricity bill etc. How can we pay for them until we get significant amount of members reached, so that it runs on its own self sufficient fund? What will be your doubts and fears on joining such society?

Share your thoughts.

Do you think, this is impossible?

It has been proved for 165 years in UK.  Quoting from the wikipedia page, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Co-operative_Group

Read the full page to know more.

<quote>

The Co-operative Group, commonly known as the Co-op, is a British consumer co-operative with a diverse family of retail businesses including food retail; electrical retail; financial services; insurance services; legal services and funeralcare, with in excess of 4,500 locations. It is the largest consumer co-operative in the UK and owned by more than 4 million active members.[4] Membership is open to everyone aged 16 and over, provided they share the values and principles upon which the group was founded. Members are democratically involved in setting business strategy, decide how social goals are achieved, and share in its profits – in the last quarter of 2016 over £15m was returned to members and their chosen local community causes

The Co-operative Group has over 70,000 employees across the UK.

The Co-operative Group is unusual as a co-op because it is owned by millions of UK consumers and also a number of other UK co-operatives, making the business a hybrid of a primary consumers’ co-operative and a co-operative federation.

</quote>

File:The Co-operative, Balloon Street, Manchester.jpg

Image source – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Co-operative,_Balloon_Street,_Manchester.jpg

cooperative uk க்கான பட முடிவு

Image source – https://www.flickr.com/photos/12859033@N00/2151256125

 

I am wondering, how we missed the co-op culture from the UK, when we copied all the politics, law, culture from the british people.

Yes. The Consumer Co-op culture is all around the UK and it has making the country wealthier.

Why cant we create such nation-wide networked co-opeative organization in India? We can. Share your thoughts on this. Let us build a great consumer society. Let us buy directly from farmers and manufacturers.

 

 

 

 

How can we add more data to OpenStreetMaps easily?


File:OSM Logo.svg

When exploring on creating maps in Tamil using OpenSteetMaps found that the current data available on OSM is not equivalent with Google Maps.

We can not copy data from Google Maps and import to OSM as it is a big copyright violation. Yes. We dont have control over the data for the area where we live.

We can do the following.

  1. Look for the data sources who may have the data about the streets, villages, cities. I think think the government departments like Postal, Revenue,Rural development, Public Works may have these data. How can we ask them to share the data in public? Will a RTI help on this? Do you have contacts with the leads of these dept? Please help to get map data from them.
  2. Add the data manually. Edit OSM just like how we are adding content to wikipedia. Drawing roads, marking important places is easy. Watch the below video for a demo.

    By this way, we can add any data manually, edit, improve the existing data. But editing on the browser is not possible for many.

    It will be nice if we have a mobile app to add data to OSM. When I had a smartphone, few years ago, searched for a OSM mobile app. Cant find any app, which helped to edit OSM.

    I dont use smartphone nowadays.

    If you have a smartphoe, can you search for the apps, which can help to edit the OSM easily?

    The app should be very simple. The user should should open the app. It should capture the latitude, longitude from its GPS or mobile tower. Then it should ask for the name of the building,  building number, type of the place, street name, area name,city name, if required a photo, etc. Once the user entered these data, it should be synced on OSM. Contribution should very simple as filling few forms only.

    If we have such app, we can create communities/volunteers to add data to OSM with their smartphones. Just open app, fill data. They are done.

If there is no such easy editing app for OSM, it is high time to create such one. If you are a mobile developer, please create such app and help to build the Openstreetmaps as content rich.

Wondering how the Google, Apple, Bing maps collected data. What kind of mobile app they used, what ate the data they collected. If you have worked for these maps, please share more details about them. It will help a lot.

There may be other easier, better ways to add data to OSM. Please share the details or connect with the communities.

Let us build content rich Open Street Maps.

 

Image source : https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:OSM_Logo.svg  – CC-BY-SA