I have got my first chance to be at a Chicagolug meet today. It was the Institute of Design in Downtown Chicago, about 25 miles from my hotel. I took the CTA Blue Line train and reached there in time. I called my friend Varun also to join. (We met accidentally on the streets of Downtown Chicago last week, just like at the hotel in Mountain View on the first time).
We had very interesting sessions on GNOME Do by Kevin Harriss and the semantic web by Andrew Dougherty. GNOME Do helps you do tasks like sending email, firing up a chat window, controlling the music player — all without using your mouse and in an easy way. It is much more than an application launcher. Only minus I could think of is its dependency on mono. It is similar to Quick Silver for the Mac. Then we had a very live and interesting discussion on the semantic web.
“The Semantic Web is an evolving extension of the World Wide Web in which the semantics of information and services on the web is defined, making it possible for the web to understand and satisfy the requests of people and machines to use the web content.” – From Wikipedia
We have also discussed its implications — some scary, on people’s lives like the increased ability of those with power to do surveillance on people.
After that I talked about the world day against software patents on September 24 and we discussed various activities we could organize to educate more people about the dangers of software patents. Stay tuned to the chicagolug mailing list for the details.