Apply for Your Free Stay during the FOSSASIA Summit 2017 with our 100 #OpenTechNights Program

The FOSSASIA Summit 2017 takes place from Friday March 17 – Sunday March 19 at the Science Centre Singapore. We are now inviting Open Source contributors to apply for a free stay in a Singapore hostel and a free ticket to the event. All you have to do is convince us, that you are an awesome Open Source contributor!

The details

Developers from all over the world are joining the FOSSASIA Summit. We want to connect established and new Open Tech contributors alike. Therefore FOSSASIA is supporting the Open Source community to join the event by offering 100 free nights stay at a hostel in the centre of Singapore and a free ticket to the event. All you have to do is to fill in the form with information that convinces us that you are an awesome contributor in the Open Source community.

The Process

Step 1: Please fill in our form here before February 17 (23:00 Singapore Time).

Step 2: We will get back to you at latest within 3 days after the deadline if you are selected. But, also we are choosing very convincing applicants on an ongoing basis. So, the earlier you apply the higher your chances to get a free stay might be.

Step 3: The selected applicants will need to confirm their itinerary and tickets before March 1st to re-assure their free stay in Singapore.

Expectations of Participants – Share what you learn

1. Please support volunteers, speakers and participants at the event. Let’s bring all this good spirit of sharing Open Technologies and learning together!

2. Help to reach out to participants who cannot join us at the event. For example make some tweets, share what you learn on social media, publish photos and put up blog posts about the summit.

Our Team

Our team of “100 #OpenTechNights” – Hong Phuc Dang, Mario Behling, and Roland Turner – is excited to meet you in Singapore!

Apply Now

Apply for a free stay with #FOSSASIA #OpenTechNights and participation at the FOSSASIA Summit 2017 now here!

More Information

More updates, tickets and information on speakers also on our #OpenEvent system:

Announcing the FOSSASIA 2017 #CodeHeat Winners

Drum roll please! We are very proud to announce the 2017 FOSSASIA #CodeHeat Grand Prize Winners and Finalists. 442 participants from 13 countries and 5 continents committed over 1000 pull requests to our repositories over the course of the contest. Congratulations to everyone to this fantastic achievement! The winners were now chosen by our jury. Thank you for reviewing the contributions.

Our three Grand Prize winners will travel to the FOSSASIA Summit in Singapore from March 17-19 and present their work to developers from around the world. The winners are (in alphabetical order):

Mayank Tripathi (mayank408)

Medozonuo Suohu (magdalenesuo)

Shubham Padia (shubham-padia)

Our other finalists will receive a voucher to support trips to Open Tech conferences in the region to connect with developers and the community.

Achint Sharma (Achint08)

Deepjyoti Mondal (djmgit)

Hemant Jadon (hemantjadon)

Pranjal Paliwal (betterclever)

Rishi Raj (rishiraj824)

Saurabh (gogeta95)

Utkarsh Gupta (uttu357)


Certificate of Participation

Many developers made outstanding contributions in the last months and we all learned a lot during the contest. Thank you so much! We hope you stay on board and continue to participate in the community to develop Open Tech that improves peoples lives and to seize the opportunity to develop your code profile with FOSSASIA. To receive your certificate of participation now, please claim it here.

Supporting Partners

We would also like to extend a special Thank you to our jury and to our supporting partners at the UNESCO and the Open Tech Society.

Thanks FOSSASIA mentors!

And we really love the work of our mentors! Thanks for your patient guidance, helping everyone with learning about best practices, reviewing the huge number of pull requests and discussing questions on the chat channels. Many of our mentors have been students in coding programs before and we are very very proud to see how you help newcomers to join. Keep up the fantastic work!

FOSSASIA Summit 2017 Singapore – Call for Speakers

The FOSSASIA OpenTechSummit is Asia’s leading Open Technology conference for developers, startups, and IT professionals. In 2017 the event will take place from March 17th – 19th at the Science Centre Singapore.

During three days, thousands of developers, technologists, scientists, entrepreneurs and artists get together to showcase latest technologies, communicate, exchange ideas, learn from each other, and collaborate. Topics range from information technology and Open Source software development to hardware and maker projects, open design tools, machine learning, DevOps, knowledge tools, and citizen science.

For our 2017 feature event we are looking for speaker submissions for the following tracks:

* Open Source Software
* Design, Art & Culture,
* Internet, Society & Politics,
* Hardware & Making,
* Health and Technology
* Science
* Kernel Track and
* Startup and Business Development

Apart from the conference program, the FOSSASIA Summit offers an exhibition space for company and project stands and areas for community assemblies, and developer meetings.

Submission Guidelines

Please propose your session as early as possible and include a description of your session proposal that is as complete as possible. The description is of particular importance for the selection. Once accepted, speakers will receive a code for a speakers ticket. Please indicate on the submissions form if you would like to apply for a sponsored community ticket.

Submission Link:

Dates & deadlines

Please send us your proposal as soon as possible via the FOSSASIA Summit speaker registration.

December 20th, 2016: Deadline for submissions
January 18th, 2017: Notification of acceptance
March 17th – 19th, 2017: FOSSASIA OpenTechSummit

Sessions and Tracks

Talks and Workshops
Talk slots are 20 minutes long plus 5-10 minutes for questions and answers. You can also sign up for either a 1-hour long or a 2-hours workshop. Longer sessions are possible in principle. Please tell us the proposed length of your session at the time of submission.

Lightning talks
You have some interesting ideas but do not want to submit a full talk? We suggest you go for a lightning talk which is a 5 minutes slot to present your idea or project. You are welcome to continue the discussion in break out areas. There are tables and chairs to serve your get-togethers.

Stands and assemblies
We offer spaces in our exhibition area for companies, community projects, installations, workshops, team gatherings and other fun activities. We are curious to know what you would like to make, bring or show. Please add details in the submission form.

Developer Rooms/Track Hosts
Get in touch early if you plan to organize a developer room at the event. FOSSASIA is also looking for team members who are interested to co-host and moderate tracks. Please sign up to become a host here.


Audio and video recordings of the lectures will be published in various formats under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) license. This license allows commercial use by media institutions as part of their reporting. If you do not wish for material from your lecture to be published or streamed, please let us know in your submission.

Sponsorship & Contact

If you would like to sponsor FOSSASIA or have any questions, please contact us via [email protected]


FOSSASIA Summit 2017:

FOSSASIA Summit 2016 Event: Wrap-Up



FOSSASIA on Twitter:

FOSSASIA Coding Contest:

Introducing Design, Art & Culture Track of FOSSASIA 2017

This year at FOSSASIA under a new “Design, Art & Culture” track we aim to unite designers, artists and developers in FOSS. The goal of this track to showcase design/art/culture projects done within open source communities and in open source way, as well as strengthen the connections between designers and FOSS community.

Picture by Hong Phuc FOSSASIA

Possible topics may include, but not limited to:
     Design (Graphic, UX)
     * FOSS Design Tools
     * Design Techniques
     * Design – Engineering Collaboration Approaches
     * Project Case Studies
     * Art projects with open source license
     * Art & Open Source
    * Culture of Open Source
    * Open Source beyond software

FASSASIA is a biggest open source community and a conference in Asia, so it will be a great chance for attendees to expand the community in the region.
New design track in particular is an opportunity to spread the word among developers regarding how and where to get design help for their projects.  
Another chance that this track provides is a help for non-code contributors to find their place in FOSS communities.

Volunteers from Open Source Design Community will promote several initiatives, like presenting successful projects and having a “jobs board” where FOSS projects looking for design contributors can connect with available designers.
If you want to help – join preparations for the track here.

Dates & Deadlines
Please send us your proposal as soon as possible via the FOSSASIA
Submission Link:

December 20th, 2016: Deadline for submissions
January 18th, 2017: Notification of acceptance
March 17th – 19th, 2017: FOSSASIA OpenTechSummit

Generating xCal calendar in python

{ Repost from my personal blog @ }

“xCal”, is an XML format for iCalendar data.

The iCalendar data format (RFC5545) is a widely deployed interchange format for calendaring and scheduling data.

A Sample xCal document

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>  
<iCalendar xmlns:xCal="urn:ietf:params:xml:ns:xcal">  
        <prodid>-//Pentabarf//Schedule 1.0//EN</prodid>
        <x-wr-caldesc>FOSDEM 2016</x-wr-caldesc>
        <x-wr-calname>Schedule for events at FOSDEM 2016</x-wr-calname>
            <summary>Introduction to the SDR Track- Speakers, Topics, Algorithm</summary>
            <description>&lt;p&gt;The opening talk for the SDR devroom at FOSDEM 2016.&lt;/p&gt;</description>
            <categories>Software Defined Radio</categories>
            <attendee>Martin Braun</attendee>

Each event/session will be in a seperate vevent block. Each speaker/attendee of an event/session will be in an attendee block inside a vevent block.

Some important elements are:

  1. version – Has the version of the iCalendar data
  2. prodid – Contains the name of the application/generator that generated this document
  3. x-wr-caldesc – A descriptive name for this calendar
  4. x-wr-calname – A description of the calendar

The structure and keywords used in xCal are the same as those used in the iCal format. To generate the XML document, we’ll be using python’s ElementTreeXML API that is part of the Python standard library.

We’ll be using two main classes of the ElementTree API:

  1. Element – used to create a standard node. (Used for the root node)
  2. SubElement – used to create a sub element and attache the new node to a parent

Let’s start with the root iCalendar node and set the required attributes.

from xml.etree.ElementTree import Element, SubElement, tostring

i_calendar_node = Element('iCalendar')  
i_calendar_node.set('xmlns:xCal', 'urn:ietf:params:xml:ns:xcal')

Now, to add the vcalendar node to the iCalendar node.

v_calendar_node = SubElement(i_calendar_node, 'vcalendar')

Let’s add the other aspects of the calendar to the vcalendar node as separate sub nodes.

version_node = SubElement(v_calendar_node, 'version')  
version_node.text = '2.0'

prod_id_node = SubElement(v_calendar_node, 'prodid')  
prod_id_node.text = '-//fossasia//open-event//EN'

cal_desc_node = SubElement(v_calendar_node, 'x-wr-caldesc')  
cal_desc_node.text = "Calendar"

cal_name_node = SubElement(v_calendar_node, 'x-wr-calname')  
cal_name_node.text = "Schedule for sessions"

Now, we have added information about our calendar. Now to add the actual events to the calendar. Each event would be a vevent node, a child of vcalendar node. We can loop through all our available event/sessions and add them to the calendar.

for session in sessions:  
    v_event_node = SubElement(v_calendar_node, 'vevent')

    uid_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'uid')
    uid_node.text = str(

    dtstart_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'dtstart')
    dtstart_node.text = session.start_time.isoformat()

    dtend_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'dtend')
    dtend_node.text = tz.localize(session.end_time).isoformat()

    duration_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'duration')
    duration_node.text =  "00:30"

    summary_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'summary')
    summary_node.text = session.title

    description_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'description')
    description_node.text = session.short_abstract

    class_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'class')
    class_node.text = 'PUBLIC'

    status_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'status')
    status_node.text = 'CONFIRMED'

    categories_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'categories')
    categories_node.text =

    url_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'url')
    url_node.text = "https://some.conf/event/" + str(

    location_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'location')
    location_node.text =

    for speaker in session.speakers:
        attendee_node = SubElement(v_event_node, 'attendee')
        attendee_node.text =

Please note that all the timings in the XML Document must comply with ISO 8601 and must have the date+time+timezone. Example: 2007-04-05T12:30-02:00.

We’re still not done yet. We now have the XML document as an Element object. But we’ll be needing it as a string to either store it somewhere or display it.

The document can be converted to a string by using the ElementTree API’s tostring helper method and passing the root node.

xml_as_string = tostring(i_calendar_node)

And that’s it. You now have a proper XML document representing your events.

Code Heat Coding Contest

In the Heat of the Code is a coding contest supported by the UNESCO to involve new contributors in Open Source projects. Participating projects are:

1. The Open Event Orga Server using Python/flask.
2. The AskSusi repositories with a focus on the Susi Android App and Susi Messenger Bots, and
3. The loklak repositories with a focus on loklak search with AngularJS.

The contest runs until 3rd February 2017. Grand prize winners will be invited to present their work at the FOSSASIA Summit at the Science Centre Singapore from March 17th -19th 2017 and will get up to 450 USD in travel funding to attend, plus a free speaker ticket.


Our jury will choose three winners from the top 10 contributors according to code quality and relevance of commits for the project. The jury also takes other contributions like submitted scrum reports and technical blog posts into account, but of course awesome code is the most important item on the list. Other participants will have the chance to win vouchers to attend Open Tech events in the region and will get certificates of participation. Sign up here now.

A team of over 30 mentors and jury members from 10 different countries supports participants of the contest.

Participants should take the time to read through the contest FAQ and familiarize themselves with the introductory information and of each project before starting work on an issue.

The website has a list of questions and answers. Developers interested in the contest can also contact mentors on our Slack channel [Get a Slack Invite].

If you make at least four commits labeled “hacktoberfest” before 31st October you can also win a Hacktoberfest T-shirt (additional sign up required here).

Mentoring in Google Code In

I worked on sTeam under FOSSASIA for my Google Summer of Code. Now on passing successfully I will be mentoring in Google Code In and help the younger minds in getting into open source development. I have put up three tasks for GCI. The tasks are an extension on my GSoC project.

The first task involves testing and writing test cases. These are not on any normal testing framework, the framework is developed on pike and specially for the project. Student will have to test the calls to COAL functions. COAL is an in house developed protocol. The task will take around a week to complete. Writing test cases is not a big task but understanding the framework, the protocol and identifying the cases is difficult. The testing framework and test cases already written can be found here.

Second task involves improving the testing framework. The testing framework has been recently developed and still requires some polishing. This task involves identifying and fixing errors in the framework and also extending the framework to add new features. New features can include a better summary of the test cases executed and more details on the errors the occurred if any.

output of testing framework
Output of Testing Framework

Third task involves extending the group command on the steam command line interface, aka, steam-shell. The group command was recently added to the shell and provides only limited functions. Student will be required to understand the use and functionalities of groups from the web interface and code these functionalities for the command line interface. This task will not require more than five days as the interface is easy to understand.

The web interface can be found at , students will have to create an account and login to use the interface.

The code for steam-shell can be found at

Students might face troubles in installing the steam command line interface and tools, therefore we are working on solution to solve this issue. We might provide a debian package that installs the software and then the source code for the tools that need to be worked upon can be downloaded from github and executed.

Adding swap space to your DigitalOcean droplet, if you run out of RAM

The Open Event Android App generator runs on a DigitalOcean. The deployment runs on a USD 10 box, that has 1 GB of RAM, but for testing I often use a USD 5 box, that has only 512mb of RAM.

When trying to build an android app using gradle and Java 8, there could be an issue where you run out of RAM (especially if it’s 512 only).

What we can do to remedy this problem is creating a swapfile. On an SSD based system, Swap spaces work almost as fast as RAM, because SSDs have very high R/W speeds.

Check hard disk space availability using

df -h

There should be an output like this

Filesystem      Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
udev            238M     0  238M   0% /dev
tmpfs            49M  624K   49M   2% /run
/dev/vda1        20G  1.1G   18G   6% /
tmpfs           245M     0  245M   0% /dev/shm
tmpfs           5.0M     0  5.0M   0% /run/lock
tmpfs           245M     0  245M   0% /sys/fs/cgroup
tmpfs            49M     0   49M   0% /run/user/1001

The steps to create a swap file and allocating it as swap are

sudo fallocate -l 1G /swapfile
sudo chmod 600 /swapfile
sudo mkswap /swapfile
sudo swapon /swapfile

We can verify using

sudo swapon --show
/swapfile file 1024M   0B   -1

And now if we see RAM usage using free -h , we’ll see

              total        used        free      shared  buff/cache   available
Mem:           488M         37M         96M        652K        354M        425M
Swap:          1.0G          0B        1.0G

Do not use this as a permanent measure for any SSD based filesystem. It can corrupt your SSD if used as swap for long. We use this only for short periods of time to help us build android apks on low ram systems.

Doing a table join in Android without using rawQuery

The Open Event Android App, downloads data from the API (about events, sessions speakers etc), and saves them locally in an SQLite database, so that the app can work even without internet connection.

Since there are multiple entities like Sessions, Speakers, Events etc, and each Session has ids of speakers, and id of it’s venue etc, we often need to use JOIN queries to join data from two tables.


Android has some really nice SQLite helper classes and methods. And the ones I like the most are the SQLiteDatabase.query, SQLiteDatabase.update, SQLiteDatabase.insert ones, because they take away quite a bit of pain for typing out SQL commands by hand.

But unfortunately, if you have to use a JOIN, then usually you have to go and use the SQLiteDatabase.rawQuery method and end up having to type your commands by hand.

But but but, if the two tables you are joining do not have any common column names (actually it is good design to have them so – by having all column names prefixed by tablename_ maybe), then you can hack the usual SQLiteDatabase.query() method to get a JOINed query.

Now ideally, to get the Session where speaker_id was 1, a nice looking SQL query should be like this –

SELECT * FROM speaker INNER JOIN session
ON speaker_id = session_speaker_id
WHERE speaker_id = 1

Which, in android, can be done like this –

String rawQuery = "SELECT * FROM " + SpeakerTable.TABLE_NAME + " INNER JOIN " + SessionTable.TABLE_NAME
        + " ON " + SessionTable.EXP_ID + " = " + SpeakerTable.ID
        + " WHERE " + SessionTable.ID + " = " +  id;
Cursor c = db.rawQuery(

But of course, because of SQLite’s backward compatible support of the primitive way of querying, we turn that command into

FROM session, speaker
WHERE speaker_id = session_speaker_id AND speaker_id = 1

Now this we can write by hacking the terminology used by the #query() method –

Cursor c = db.query(
        SessionTable.TABLE_NAME + " , " + SpeakerTable.TABLE_NAME,
        Utils.concat(SessionTable.PROJECTION, SpeakerTable.PROJECTION),
        SessionTable.EXP_ID + " = " + SpeakerTable.ID + " AND " + SpeakerTable.ID + " = " +  id,

To explain a bit, the first argument String tableName can take table1, table2 as well safely, The second argument takes a String array of column names, I concatenated the two projections of the two classes. and finally, put by WHERE clause into the String selection argument.

You can see the code for all database operations in the android app here

Getting code coverage in a Nodejs project using Travis and CodeCov

We had set up unit tests on the webapp generator using mocha and chai, as I had blogged before.

But we also need to get coverage reports for each code commit and the overall state of the repo.

Since it is hosted on Github, Travis comes to our rescue. As you can see from our .travis.yml file, we already had Travis running to check for builds, and deploying to heroku.

Now to enable Codecov, simply go to and enable your repository (You have to login with Github so see your Github repos) .

Once you do it, your dashboard should be visible like this

We use istanbul to get codecoverage. To try it out just use

istanbul cover _mocha

On the root of your project (where the /test/ folder is ) . That should generate a folder called coverage or lcov. Codecov can read lcov reports. They have provided a bash file which can be run to automatically upload coverage reports. You can run it like this –

bash <(curl -s

Now go back to your codecov dashboard, and your coverage report should show up.

Screenshot from 2016-08-29 21-23-00

If all is well, we can integrate this with travis so that it happens on every code push. Add this to your travis.yml file.

  - istanbul cover _mocha
- bash <(curl -s

This will ensure that on each push, we run coverage first. And if it is successful, we push the result to codecov.

We can see coverage file by file like this

Screenshot from 2016-08-29 21-23-35

And we can see coverage line by line in a file like this

Screenshot from 2016-08-29 21-26-55