media, information, the contemporary

FLOSS Fellowship Programme

The Sarai-CSDS Independent FLOSS Fellowship Programme enabled programmers to research and develop different kinds of open source software-based applications. Typically, these are projects that would not usually find support in formal, institutional or market-driven settings, either because of the intent/ nature of the goal or because of the ‘open’ nature of the knowledge thus produced/created.

Note: Several links on this page may no longer be alive. Apologies for this inconvenience.


Linux based CNC Controller
Sagar Behere and Sandeep Bhambra

The project aims to develop a GNU/Linux based CNC controller using off-the-shelf hardware.

Management and Information System
Ekgaon Technologies

This project aims to implement a complete, modular Management and Information System (MIS) for village-based Self-Help Groups.

Library Management Software
Sharmad Naik

This project will implement a complete library management system.

Sunil Abraham

This is a proposal to test and benchmark free software to ensure that it can be used for mission critical applications.


KDE Translation
G. Karunakar and Ravishankar Srivastav

With support from the fellowship, translation of the KDE desktop into Hindi started in January 2004, and by June was nearly 90% complete. Subsequently, a translation review Workshop was held in August at Sarai to review the completed work. These updates were later included in the IndLinux release, Unnati (Indlinux Hindi v0.9) available for download here.

Surekha Sastry and K. Srinivasa Raghavan

Worked on multilingual support for web applications (executed on the server end, instead of the user end) by developing “Indicart“, a project management website offering Indic resources for software and interface development. This “cart” is an open community for developers, research scientists and end-users to participate in, creating his/her own project space and enabling maintenance of a project management tool with Indic support.

Their fellowships were extended at the end of last year in support of their development of Indic Input Method Editor (IME) for Indian language support for Mozilla browsers. The IME toolbar can be directly installed from here.

Indic Font Development
Sayamindu Dasgupta

During the course of the fellowship he developed two Indic fonts, Baraha in Hindi and Aakash in Bengali. He also documented the process of creating unicode compliant Indic open-type fonts from existing non-open type, non-unicode fonts, through a written tutorial and a video demonstration. The tutorials are hosted at this website.

2004-2005 (Continued)

P2P Usability Research
Shehjar Tikoo

He is researching the use of P2P technologies for sharing popular software and as a means of efficient distribution of such software over slow networks (low bandwidth) through popular software package management system APT and integrating it with popular P2P filesharing tool, BitTorrent. In the process he also developed a tutorial for Python bindings. The tutorial is available here. Examples can be found here.

P2P News Distribution
Soumava Das

Soumava extensively researched and tested open source technologies and methodologies and conceptualised a P2P news distribution framework. This work is still in progress and when completed will be the first of its kind and will usher in a new paradigm in the field of news distribution.

S. Subramanya Sastry

Sastry worked on a generic news archiving tool, Newsrack, that automatically collects and organises information according to pre-defined keywords. The Newsrack tool tried to address the need felt by non-profit organisations to collate and archive news items and other information on specific subjects. He has created a website ( for hosting, testing and evaluation of this tool. Newsrack was a great success in capturing Tsunami-related news in December 2004.


Implementing / Porting Hindawi, Romenagri, APCISR etc. to Linux / FLOSS Environments
Abhishek Choudhary, Kolkata, West Bengal

Panini – Integrated Translation Management System
Baishampyan Ghose, Kohlapur, Maharashtra

Hindi Localization of OpenOffice.Org2.2 Help Contents
Ravishankar Srivastava, Ratlam, Madhya Pradesh

Open Source Parallel Database
Sharad Maloo, Mumbai, Maharashtra

Newsrack – Automating News Gathering and Classification
Subramanya Sastry, Bangalore, Karnataka

Search Interface Driven Archive
Supreet Sethi and Amit Sethi, Delhi

“Indic B2B” Localization Modules
Surekha Sastry and Srinivasa Raghavan, Bangalore, Karnataka