| Danial Norjidi |
THE Google Developers Group (GDG) Brunei kicked off a special two-day event dubbed the ‘DevFest’ yesterday at Institut Teknologi Brunei (ITB).
In his opening speech, the Co-Chairman of GDG Brunei, Rahimah Haji Mohd Yussof, said the GDG Brunei DevFest 2014 is a large community-run event that offers speaker sessions across various areas of technology.
“The GDG Brunei DevFest 2014 is inspired by global trend technologies and is uniquely tailored to the needs of the Brunei developer community,” said Rahimah, explaining that the DevFest “will, at its core, be powered by a shared belief that when developers come together to exchange ideas, amazing innovations can happen.”
“This year we are honoured to have ITB co-host the DevFest. We have planned that the programme will cover the general participants and developers alike,” she added. “This year’s programme will also include the ‘Design Sprint’, which will enable participants to develop a community application that can be of help to the community.”
Also notable this year is the inclusion of the DevKids workshop – a new initiative to encourage young minds to be innovative with programming skills.
She went on to share that the organisers will be giving recognition to groups who have developed exceptional applications during the Design Sprint and DevKids workshop, highlighting that AITI and Google have sponsored prizes to recognise apps developed by local developers.
“We hope that with the continuous support, GDG Brunei Darussalam will be able to encourage the local community to venture into application development in Brunei in meeting the national aspiration of Brunei Vision 2035,” she said.
Attending yesterday’s event as the guest of honour was the Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Prime Minister’s Office and Chief Executive Officer of the Brunei Economic Development Board (BEDB), Dr Hj Abd Manaf bin Hj Metussin.
“At BEDB, we have been organising various activities, especially among youths to develop and create a culture of innovation, which is very important. We want to make Brunei a country that is not only fuelled by oil and gas but also knowledge-based activities,” Dr Hj Abd Manaf said.
“This DevFest is one of the platforms for us to create young entrepreneurs and innovators who can help us diversify the economy,” he said. “That’s the reason why I felt it was important to be here and support this event.”
In addition to the speeches, the opening ceremony also saw a keynote address from Dr Krishnan, a Google Developer Expert from Singapore, on the topic of Google Cloud development and Cloud storage.
The event continued with a small exhibition showcasing various Google technologies, such as the Google Glass, Android TV, Android Watch, the Google Cardboard and a Chromebook laptop.
The GDG Chairman, Haji Azaman bin Haji Suleiman, led the guest of honour on a tour explaining the various technologies on display.
Haji Azaman then led the first session of the DevKids workshop, which saw the involvement of students from various schools. He introduced the young participants to mobile application development through the use of the AppInventor tool.
Concurrently, the event went into sessions focused on various aspects of Google technology development, including monetisation, material design, game development, Google Maps, wearable tech design and many more, before coming to a close in the afternoon with a Q&A session.
The DevFest is set to continue today with more of the DevKids workshop, as well as specialised sessions for other participants, including an Android BootCamp, community apps Design Sprint, DevOps and code labs.
GDG Brunei Darussalam is a non-profit technology group which aims to improve the level of technology talent as well as interest in Google technologies in the country.