Monday, June 28, 2010

ACM Hyderabad Event: Contemporary Mobile Application Platforms

The ACM chapter in Hyderabad collaborated with ITSAP to host a full day event on Mobile Computing on June 26. Most of the ACM events have been one hour lectures, usually in the evening, but the ACM board started thinking about what might be of interest for a full day event, and came up with Mobile as a theme. We were lucky to get participation from some great resources, and the plan came together. We will continue to have lectures approximately monthly, but this event shows that there is interest in more in-depth events as well.

The morning consisted of a series of four lectures. In the afternoon, there was an Android code lab, followed by a Windows Mobile 7 code lab. One of the most common questions before the event was, "Is it free?" Yes, it was free, done entirely with donated time and resources.

The morning lectures were attended by approximately 150 people; the afternoon code labs by about 90 and 50 people, respectively. The event was free, and the talks were relevant and interesting. A few topics came up frequently, such as certification; migration to new versions, and so on. I certainly found it an interesting day.
A lot of the feedback was positive, but the level of the audience was mixed, with predictable results in the code labs.

I would like to thank some of the many people who contributed to making this event possible. In particular:
  • CA, for providing the facilities, including a lovely auditorium, and tea and lunch. Thank you very much!

  • All the presenters, for sharing their expertise and time:
    • Mohan Vamsi, Senior Architect at the Mobile COE, Cognizant, gave an overview of the area, and told of some of the considerations in developing mobile solutions
    • Rajdeep Dua and Dan Brunton, Developer Advocates at Google, gave an overview of the Android platform.
      • Dan was a surprise addition to the program: he specializes in Mobile games, and was a great addition due to his specialized insight. He came specially from Mountain View to participate in this program.
    • Sudeep Bharthi, Director, Mobile Platforms and Tools, Microsoft, gave an overview of the Windows Mobile 7 platform, and some of the design goals. He also gave a quick demo of creation of a small app.
    • The scheduled speaker from Infosys was unable to attend, so we were lucky to have with us Rakesh Kapur, Senior Member, Infosys Consulting, and Ms. Gnanapriya, Chief Architect, Infosys. They traveled from Bangalore for the event, and gave an overview of the Infosys Flypp platform.

  • All the instructors who helped in the afternoon code labs. They led the participants through a programming problem, and gave their time and expertise to help with problems ranging from software installation to how to optimize their design.

    • From Google, for the Android Code Lab:
      • Rajdeep Dua led the creation of a Notepad application
      • Dan Brunton showed some tricks in using the debugger, such as loading the Android source code in order to step through and see how it works.
      • And helping in the audience:
        • Anirudh Dewani
        • Gaurav Vijay
        • Harshitha Menon
        • Saurabh Singh

    • From Microsoft, for the Windows Mobile 7 Code Lab

      • Mr. Reddy Duggempudi led the code lab, which allowed one to run a video and simultaneously flip it on two axes; very cute.
      • Helping in the audience were
        • Alok Jain
        • Gopinath CH
        • Madhu Vadlapudi
        • Kedar Ajit Rudre
        • Neeraj Jain
        • Sudeep Bharti

      • Moreover, a special thanks to the Microsoft team for running back to their office to bring extra power cords for the use of the participants in the two codelabs! This made a huge difference to many people.
There were many people behind the scenes as well, working out the logistics, and our thanks to all of them.

We hope for other similarly popular events, and are always looking for volunteers to help us on the ACM Hyderabad program committee, as well as to make programs like this work. Please write to the officers if you are interested in proposing an event, or helping to plan events. And follow the events at!