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Enriching the algorithmic programming skills among Sri Lankan students

Considering the salient advantages by enriching the algorithmic programming skills among the Sri Lankan school, undergraduate students as well as early career graduates, IEEE Young Professionals Sri Lanka thought of having an algorithmic programming competition among Sri Lankan young programmers.

Having the constraints of informatics Olympiad, IEEE Xtreme competitions which are of similar kind but restricted to one set of group, we think of having all programmers compete in one platform to enhance the competitive advantage.

This will be a warm up session for undergraduate and graduate students who are willing to participate in the IEEE Xtreme 8.0 and will be a challenging experience for school students who could be able to share the same arena with senior programmers. The early career graduates will also witness a wonderful change having bored with working on their company projects all the time. The expected participation would be around 200+ participants.

Date: 11thOctober, 2014
Venue: University of Moratuwa & University of Peradeniya

IEEE Excavation 1.0

Details submitted to us by Andun Sameera

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Twitter community of Sri Lanka is unique! They have been arranging various community building activities online as well as offline including events such as TweetupSL and Tweeps Iftar. The most recent event of Sri Lankan Twitter community was its blood donation camp, which was named #iDonateLK. Twitter in Sri Lanka is regularly used as a methodology to communicate requests for blood donors where Twitter accounts such as @BloodLK and @BloodNeedSL push updates on urgent blood requests and Tweeps regularly engage in such donations. Taking this practice a step further, few tweeps got together and organised #iDonateLK exclusive blood donation camp for tweeps to donate blood. This event was held on 6th of April 2014 at the National Blood Transfusion Service. This is the very first time the Sri Lankan Twitter community organised such an event, going beyond typical events of networking and fun.

How did it Start?

Like in the case of most the Twitter event, iDonateLK also started simply with a tweet, which was posted by Gayathri Seveneviratne (gsenev).

 

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Proving the point that a simple tweet can do wonders, there were many tweets acknowledging the idea which led to another ‘social media for social good initiative’ by Sri Lankan Twitter community.

 

Who was behind iDonateLK?

 

Organising an event of this nature is challenging because all the coordination and communications happen online. But, there were tweeps to accept this challenge and be a part of this great initiate. The team behind iDonateLK include @milindat @MoAwesomeSauce @udithaumesh @SNSalgado @BuduMalli @nisald @Yeheshan @ShafrazKhahir, Vishmi and @gsenev. @dialogLK  was the sole sponsor who backed the event financially.

 

 

What Happened at iDonateLK? 

Proving the point that social media can be used for social good, there were many Twitter users who made themselves available on that day to donate blood. 44 donors succeeded in donating blood at iDonateLK and there were many who were turned down in the donor filtering process.

The diversity was the most interesting element of iDonateLK where differences such as religion, age,  social status and gender did not have any impact on making social good through social media. They all came together as ‘tweeps’ to donate blood and support the needy people.

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What do Tweeps Say about iDonateLK?

As I told you before, organizing an event of this nature is challenging and we spoke to the main personality behind to iDonateLK, Gayathri Seneviratne @gsenev on her experience  and this is what she had to say:

“I am excited and so extremely happy that we were able to record 50+ donors today. Why it is so is that first, it happened to fall on the day of the finals and promotion of the event was done solely through Twitter. A lot more than 50 turned out but most of them were rejected due to various causes. This meant that not everyone knows a lot of the prerequisites of donating blood and among other plans of having another event of the same caliber, we’re also hoping on building a system to improve this knowledge and awareness among the young people. I also want to thank the team for all their efforts both online and offline. On behalf of the team, I thank all the donors who donated and to everyone else who made an effort to be there.”

Not only the organisers, but also the donors consider this event to be an exciting experience as they were part of a social good initiative.  One of the donors of iDonateLK, Udara Dharmasena (@udaraumd) says “It was the first pint of blood I have ever donated. I was not planning to donate yesterday since I’m barely passing the minimum weight required for blood donation. But suddenly I felt like giving and Umesh encouraged me. It’s a great feeling to donate blood and physically I didn’t feel that I have lost 450ml of blood from my system at all. Anyway It was a great effort by the tweeps of Sri Lanka. I’m very happy to be a part of this social good activity.”

 

There were many first time donors and many were inspired fellow tweeps to donate blood. Sri Lankan Twitter community has embarked on something extra ordinary and this is not the end! The organizing committee of iDonateLK is certain that there will be many more similar events happening in the future. In the time of negatives about social media, Sri Lankan Twitter community has set an example that social media can be used to generate social good, if it is used in the right manner.

For full pics from the blood donation, see our fb album

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Ingress is a real life location based augmented reality game, developed by NianticLabs@Google.

Recently the Ingress activity has seen some momentum in Sri Lanka, specially in Colombo suburbs and in Kandy. There are many activities detected all over the country.

The gameplay consists of establishing “portals” at places of public art, landmarks, cenotaphs, etc., and linking them to create virtual triangular fields over geographic areas. Progress in the game is measured by the number of Mind Units, i.e. people, nominally controlled by each faction (as illustrated on the Intel Map). The necessary links between portals may range from meters to kilometers, or to hundreds of kilometers in operations of considerable logistical complexity. International links and fields are not uncommon, as Ingress has attracted an enthusiastic following in cities worldwide amongst both young and old, to the extent that the gameplay is itself a lifestyle for some, including tattoos.

Ingress in Sri Lanka

Ingress in Sri Lanka

A possible portal looks like this:

Portal

So there are two teams known as Resistance(Blue) and Enlightened(Green). And they fight over capturing and establishing their strong hold around the cities.

Players actually need to go to the real location marked on the map to interact with a portal. So it really is a time consuming and tiresome game, but a good game if you are traveling in vehicle and you often get caught in traffic.

So each player has a user level, which increases with the activities you do in Ingress. So people destroy portals and capture an enemy portal and do all those other stuff to gain point and to level up. The higher level player gets the liberty of using more powerful weapons and items.

Also there is a real time COMM chat system, helping each faction to communicate with each others and to get real time update on what is happening around them in Ingress.

Resistance Meetup near Word Trade Centre. Photo credit - Thilanka Niroshana

Resistance Meetup near Word Trade Centre. Photo credit – Thilanka Niroshana

Also people become friends with same faction and they do get together often not only to meet but also to engage  in larger missions and fun stuffs. Going on trips to unveil hidden and unknown portals and create control fields to show their power are really fun.

Here is some of major Ingress operations that went over the country to capture large area of land by both factions.

Operation – From North with Love
Faction – Resistance
Reference - https://plus.google.com/+GaveenPrabhasara/posts/9LE8KwPHaNh
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Operation – Coast2Coast
Faction – Enlightened
Reference – https://plus.google.com/118118346515377811509/posts/PCEbg4EKqF1

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✮ Top Game of 2013 at Google Play Player’s Choice Awards.
✮ Best Android Strategy Game Runner-up at Android Central Best of 2013 Awards
✮ One of the Best Android Apps of 2013 – Gizmag

Resource : Ingress Sri Lanka G+ Community , Ingress Official Site

Google Play Store : Download the Game Here

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hSenid Mobile, a multinational telco-mobile software solutions provider connecting telcos to businesses, sponsored the first ever Telco Application Developer Summit (TADS) along with fellow industry leaders over a two-day period.

At the Summit, hSenid Mobile presented their success story that facilitated the building and sustenance of a telco developer community in emerging markets. hSenid Mobile pointed out how of the 6.8 billion global subscriber base only 1.5 billion had access to applications provided by Apple, Android etc handset manufacturers.

“Our deployments have made us identify some of the key areas that are yet to be optimized in order to create successful developer communities. Having sponsored a Summit the size of TADS, we are pleased to have shared our expertise in building and sustaining successful developer communities,” said hSenid Mobile CEO, Dinesh Saparamadu.

Two of the key strategies adopted by hSenid Mobile in creating developer communities include emphasizing the need for localized mobile applications and providing multiple and alternate payment options that do not require credit or debit cards.

TADS was the first and only global meeting for Developers who want to learn, share, code and create. The grassroots initiative from and by the people of the industry crafted for Developers and Telcos to collaborate towards the creation of the new wave of the telecom application ecosystem.