We are happy to announce that registration for a new Wireless 108 course is now open. The four-week course (June 20 - July 15) will be delivered out at our premises in Upper TCV, Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh. The overall course cost will be Rs. 5,000, which will cover tuition and study materials. Travel, accommodation and food are the participants' responsibility (we will be happy to advise on possible accomodation in the area).
The cold wave in North India announced itself in Dharamsala with a bitterly cold snow storm in Mid January. Waking up to the sleek white surroundings would usually give the sense of pure tranquillity, which regardless of climate is not usually hard to find in Dharamsala. However it was not long before the impact of the snow had its effect on everyday necessities. Roads were snowed in, electricity down and thus internet barely available across the network.
Throughout the week of the snowstorm the AirJaldi team worked overtime, getting the Dharamsala network back on track. The sheer weight of the snow had disabled cables, they had to be rewired. Naturally water is not good for radio signals, thus towers were climbed and antennas wiped of snow.
A new Wireless 108 course will be opening on Monday, February 7. the four-week course (February 7 - March 4) will be carried out at our premises in Upper TCV, near Dal Lake, upper Dharamsala. The overall course cost will be Rs. 5,000, which will cover tuition and study materials. Travel, accommodation and food are the participants' responsibility.
The course is open to anyone who speaks English (our instructor can speak Tibetan and Hindi, but the materials and language used in the course will be English), has an interest in computers and is willing to put his/her head and hands to work.
While some seats are reserved, a few places are still available. If you are interested in attending the course, please write us at email@example.com. It would greatly help us if you give us some details about yourself - in particular your background in computers (if any) and reasons for wanting to join the course.
We look forward to hearing from you!
As many of you know, we at AirJaldi take pride in our tight collaboration with academia and leading research institutes, chief among which is the UC-Berkeley's TIER group. These collaborations have proved instrumental in keeping the technical edge and allowed AirJaldi to continuously improve our own and others' understanding of rural networking.
The AirJaldi Network Academy’s new offering – Wireless 108 – is on at the AirJaldi premises in Upper TCV. The four week course, delivered by Tenzin Yonten, is AirJaldi’s new offering. Wireless 108 is our basic wireless course, which is aimed at anyone who has basic computer knowledge, good knowledge of English, interest in the field and willingness to put one’s hands and head to work.
The course is designed to cover the basics of computers (hardware and software) and networking (wired and wireless). At the end of the course, participants are able to carry out basic PC troubleshooting, create a simple server-based network and connect computers to it via wired and wireless interfaces.
In it, Mr. Behar concludes that “After 5 years [of developing a digital learning resource library and supporting schools who made use of it], when we took stock at a fundamental level, we realized that the whole thing was at best a qualified failure.”
Having read it with great interest, and being involved with activities in the derided ICT4D field, I thought of sharing my own thoughts on this thougtful and provoking piece.
It's been very long since my last blog post here!
So many things have changed since I moved to Berkeley a bit more than two years ago...
On the personal front, I'm now the proud father of two kids (yes two in two years) - Divya (just turned two) and Nitai (he's now seven months old).
As for the technology, I came across an old document yesterday - "Keeping the network alive", http://wiki.airjaldi.org, which I wrote back in September 2007, in the hopes it would spark a lively discussion and might turn into a productive collaborative environment. The document presented a perspective on what has changed and what remains valid today. Particularly, some issues at the forefront of our R&D agenda back in 2007 have since been resolved, while surprisingly many others, where we've and others have made little or no progress, remain open problems to address today.
That document did result in substantial academic studies, starting with our own paper (with a very similar title) - "Beyond Pilots: Keeping Rural Wireless Networks Alive" - http://www.usenix.org/event/nsdi08/tech/surana.html
Published in August 2008, this paper have already inspired many researchers, led to many studies and has been quoted in 33 peer reviewed publications: (http://scholar.google.com/scholar?cites=12485503342736570061 ) -- not bad for less then two years. Additionally, I was surprised to find this paper on the syllabus and reading lists of many classes and seminars at leading universities worldwide.
A long absence from one’s own website, such as the one visitors to this website have witnessed for quite some time, requires explanations.
Well, we were here all the time, but as sometimes happens (though shamefully should not happen to an ICT-minded outfit such as ours), our small team was always busy doing other things, or rather – those of us who are willing to submit postings (most are not – they prefer to be out and about putting up nodes and would rather struggle for hours with a pesky connection rather than try to articulate what it is that they are doing).
The past few months at the AirJaldi Network Academy have been quite hectic and very fruitful. Amongst other things were eight weeks spent in Delhi, a key outcome of which is a brand new Red Hat Certified Engineer in our midst! (Me! :-) Of course, it's best to set this fancy titles (and its barefy impressive acronym) aside... This qualification is valuable for the expanded and formalized understanding of Linux internals and basics; a first step, a launch pad from which to blast off towards being "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger." As AirJaldi grows, with its technology and experience spinning off into a rapidly expanding network, there are exciting opportunities to hone and develop these skills. But more on all that, in other posts and at other times.
As importantly, another iteration of Cisco's IT Essentials: PC Hardware and Software is almost over, just in time before the onslaught of the monsoons is unleashed. Staged a few kilometres from Dharamshala, participants for this episode of ITE were members and associates of Nishtha and Jagori Grameen , two prominent local grassroots NGOs.
“I have a terrible headache!” admitted Dhonam, climbing down after a 2-hour stint in the mid-day sun near Pong lake. We were all dehydrated and discouraged. We have been trying to bring up the carefully-planned and so far meticulously executed link for the best part of the day with little success. It was time to rethink our approach
The Stockholm Challenge Award winners were announced on Thursday, May 22 at a Gala dinner held in Stockholm. The winners were selected from among 2,000 registration, from whom among 145 finalists were selected. Of those, seven projects received prizes as winners of their categories and nine additional projects received special mentions for excellence in the use of ICT.
The AirJaldi Network Academy will be offering the next iteration of Cisco's IT Essentials: PC Hardware and Software between June 9, 2008 and July 4, 2008. Confirm your participation, by registering early!
For more information about the academy, courses, fees and timings, visit The AirJaldi Network Academy.
With some delay (quite some delay…) we are happy to let you know that we have been selected as finalists for the Stockholm Challenge Award in the Public Administration Category .
The Award promotes ICT4D initiatives by highlighting projects that use ICT to tackle development challenges. The Stockholm Challenge 2008 features a six category award in the following areas: Culture, Economic Development, Education, Environment, Health and Public Administration. The winning projects – one for each category – will be announced at a prize ceremony that will take place in Stockholm on May 22nd. Each winner receive the Stockholm Challenge trophy and certificate of achievement and a cheque for 5,000 Euros.
For more information about the academy, courses, fees and timings, visit The AirJaldi Network Academy!