Antti Kaijanmäki participated in the COSS Summer Code project and worked on improvements that make mobile networking in Linux easier. The users have praised the new easy networking features first implemented in Ubuntu 8.10. Kaijanmäki’s part is the clickthrough installation of mobile networking. Applications for COSS Summer Code 2009 open in January.
Antti Kaijanmäki, also known as Wellark, a 21 year old student of digital and computer technology at Tampere University of Technology, participated in COSS Summer Code 2008 Project. He programmed a settings assistant for mobile networking devices for Linux. Now it is possible to set up mobile networking with a graphical clickthrough tool. The tool also contains settings for major operators throughout the world. Antti’s work has been published first in Ubuntu 8.10. and the overall comfort and performance of Network Manager has been praised in different reviews and blogs.
Antti, what made you apply for the COSS Summer Code?
– I have had the idea of the project in my mind for few years. I don’t remember where I heard about the Summer Code, but because I already had the idea I decided to send an application.
How tempting do you think the Summer Code is?
– It is tempting; you get to do what you want. The only thing that we laughed about was making the presentations both in the applying stage and at the end. It requires quite a lot of work. In a normal summer job you simply get the instructions and you do the job. The difference is rather clear.
What kind of instructions would you give to a person considering applying for the Summer Code?
– The motivation of doing a Summer Code project goes hand in hand with the motivation of general FOSS development. It is all about your own motivation. For me, it was very relevant that someone was interested about my project. Ubuntu activist Alexander Sack and Rubén Romero got excited about my project and gave me ideas and support. Besides that, friends who were interested in the project motivated me. Afterwards it feels good to see blog-posts about how great it is that it just works.
What has this positive publicity felt like?
– Of course it feels really good. One of the motivations to do FOSS work is helping others. It feels great to achieve that goal. Clearly this was a genuine problem and solving it has helped a lot of people. The assistant is not yet perfect and it needs ongoing maintenance. The database that holds the settings of different operators is mostly taken from the GPRS Easy Connect -project that is already finished. Some changes have been done to update the base. New changes are coming at a rate of approximately one per week.
– There has been some uncertainty about who has done what. My part of the whole thing was the settings assistant – the guided clickthrough. The actual PPP connection stack has been programmed by other contributors. As I had some extra time I did the integration for the Network Manager applet, too. The Network Manager User/Interface is one of the challenges of future. We will also add new types of connection devices and types of networking, says Antti.
In addition to Antti, Summer Code 2008 hired four other coders. Juuso Alasuutari improved LASH Audio Session Handler, Sakari Bergen’s project was about improving Ardour, Niklas Laxström worked with MediaWiki translation support and Olli Savolainen’s topic was the Moodle Quiz. Alongside COSS, 2008 Summer Code was funded – and the choice of Summercoders was done by – Nokia, Nokia Siemens Networks, Saunalahti, Google, Novell, Ixonos and Nomovok.
Summer Code Finland is a yearly project organized by FILOSI (the Finnish Linux and Open Source Initiative), which aims to support Finnish participation in significant open source projects and to strengthen the open source competencies which companies need. FILOSI, a joint project of institutes and companies involved in software development, operates as a part of COSS, the Finnish Centre for Open Source Solutions.
Next year’s Summer Code application period starts in January 2009. Keep an eye on the website http://www.coss.fi/en/summercode.