Santhosh Thottingal


Santhosh contributes to Dhvani TTS, GNOME Malayalam, Debian Malayalam, Aspell-ml, Swathanthra Malayalam Computing and Silpa project.

Name: Santhosh Thottingal
Age: 24
Occupation: Software Engineer
IRC Nick: santhosh
Email: santhosh dot thottingal at

Computer / Laptop Configuration and OS (Distro):

  • Laptop

HP COMPAQ Presario V3029 Turion64X2@1.6GHz/512DDR2/80GB with Debian Lenny, Ubuntu 8.04 and Fedora 9


  • How did you get into GNU, Linux and FOSS in general?

My friend gave me a book "Free software Free Society" ( when I was in Engg college(2003).

  • Share your first encounter with FOSS (Installation, setup, etc.)

When I got a computer at home(It was at 2003. My house got electricy connection at 2001 only) I asked my dealer to install 'linux' on that. He tried and failed. So I tried myself and after 3 or 4 attempts, I did it

  • What lead to a sustained continuity in FOSS after you stepped in?

gnu philosophy + community + friends + my projects

  • A funny instance during your initial days of computing with FOSS

/ computers complimentary to second question) The same dealer started calling me for installation help after one year

Present FOSSy activity

  • Which project do you currently contribute to?

SMC Projects(L10N of gnome, debian, kde, Swanalekha Input method, Aspell/Hunspell Spell checkers, etc..), Dhvani Indian language text to speech system

  • How much time in a week / day / month do you spend on it?

Nights(2-3 Hours) + Weekends

  • What are your favourite text editor[s] / IDE[s] / development

environment tools? gedit, Eclipse

  • What do you think is best about your project (that you contribute to)?

It is for for common man

  • What would you like to advise budding contributors/developers?

Think about the users first, then think about the project

  • Any favorite programming language?



  • "Philosophy plus pragmatism" or "Just Philosophy can achieve

goals" or "Just Pragmatism can achieve goals" - Could also be looked as RMS or Linus

Philosophy or RMS

  • What's interesting about your local GNU/Linux User Group / other

community that you are a part of? SMC - A community that grown very fast to the most active Free software developer community working in Natural Language techonolgy in India

  • Five quick buzzwords (verbs / adjectives) for an "ideal"

community according to you? FOSS + hackers + involvement + trust + communication + upstream

  • Best (or your favorite) FOSS related conference in India (One or

many) and why?

  • Why do you think Localisation is important in a country like India?"

illiteracy + widening digital divide will tell that story


  • About you

I am working in Infosys Technologies Ltd, chennai as a Programmer Analyst in weekdays and working for my own projects in weekends.

  • Screenshot of your desktop

പിന്നെത്തരാം ട്ടോ

  • Your working room / working environment (photo / description)

അടിച്ചുവൃത്തിയാക്കീട്ടില്ല. അതുകൊണ്ടു് കാണാന്‍ കൊള്ളില്ല. അതുകഴിഞ്ഞു ഒരുഗ്രന്‍ ഫോടോ അയച്ചുതരാം.

  • Favourite beverage:

Butter milk

  • Favourite Street Food:

Banana Bajji

  • Current Locality (City, State):

Chennai, Tamilnadu

  • Mother Tongue


  • City in India you would like to visit in your free time

I don't like visiting Cities, Instead I would like travel through God's Own Country.

  • Also please add any other qustions you would like to answer :-)

Do you have any more questions?

This page features an Indian FOSS Contributor

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