Isaac Kamga discusses his contribution to the Ballistic Research Laboratory–Computer-Aided Design (BRL-CAD) community implementing a heart-shaped primitive and explains how this catapulted him into a role as a community organizer for Silicon Mountain, Africa’s next tech hub.
The implementation was a demonstration of the engineering of a heart-shaped primitive within the BRL-CAD open source software package and its impact on the developer community in Cameroon. Using a case study approach, the team designed the heart-shaped primitive’s data structure, and necessary callback functions were written and tested with BRL-CAD’s testing infrastructure. (The Laguerre-based root solver is a sure-fire iterative method for finding roots of polynomials.)
This work provided a guideline for the development of primitives within open source computer-aided design (CAD) software and showed that the BRL-CAD package primarily developed for the military sector could be used in nonmilitary locales for entertainment purposes. Isaac explains how he leveraged this experience to invite his entire developer community in Cameroon to contribute to open source software and how startups in Cameroon are leveraging open source software to build businesses.
Isaac Kamga is the founder and manager of the Google Developer Group Buea, a community nonprofit funded by Google Inc and ActivSpaces Cameroon that develops programs that have introduced over 300 youths to computer programming. The group currently hosts the largest number of female open source contributors and has produced over 30 Google Summer of Code participants from Cameroonian Universities. Since then, he’s worked with ActivSpaces, Cameroon’s premiere tech incubator, to motivate over 50 developers from Africa to contribute (as students and sometimes as mentors) through GSoC and Google Code-In to open source organizations such as the Apache Software Foundation, BRL-CAD, CiviCRM, Cloud Native Computing Foundation, Cryptostick, LibreHealth, Linux Foundation, MariaDB, Mifos Initiative, OpenMRS, Systers, Typo3, and Wikimedia Foundation. Isaac holds an MSc in computer science from the University of Buea, Cameroon.
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