Interview - Shobhit Agarwal

Name: Shobhit Agarwal (@Shobhit_Agarwal )

Location: Where do you live? Where do you work?
I was born and brought up in Kanpur, India. And currently, I am living in Bangalore and work in a company "Tonbo Imaging" as a "Member of Technical Staff".

Tell us a fun fact or story about yourself!
When I am not enjoying with family or friends, I like to spend my free time doing open source contribution and learning about new things.

How did you first find out about ODK?
I found about this amazing community in February 2017. I was in my college looking for open source projects to contribute to. It's then I found about ODK on up-for-grabs. I like to code in Java and I had also done a couple of projects in android so I decided to work on the Collect project.

What are you using ODK for?
I am just a developer who likes to contribute to the community by fixing bugs, reporting issues and actively participating in the discussions. I was also selected to participate in the Google summer of code, 2017 to work with ODK for the entire summers. Currently, I am also a member of the Technical Steering Committee.

What’s your favorite ODK feature?
The whole idea of being able to build forms, deploy them and then submit them intrigues me a lot. But if I had to choose only one, I'd pick the drag and drop feature to build complex forms using the Build tool.

How did you get so involved in the community? What keeps you coming back & staying involved?
The impact which the ODK has made since it has been made available in the field of data collection is huge and that fascinates me a lot. But the self-satisfaction which I get after helping such a large number of people all around the world keeps me self-motivated and hooked to this community. Apart from this, I got to learn a ton of things while working on ODK and hope that this will be same in the coming future. It helps me enrich my technical knowledge and also develops my social skills. And at last, I would like to point out that the members of the community are so polite and encouraging and working with them is always a pleasure.

What has been the greatest challenge for you in learning about ODK? (Either the software, the community or both!)
I have never seen an actual deployment of ODK at a large scale data collection program so I am still unaware of the various challenge that one faces while using the tools.
Since I am a developer and not the actual user, so sometimes I face a little bit difficulty in understanding which feature or interface might be useful and what all needs improvement.

Let’s talk about goals: Do you have any ODK-related goals for yourself, your organization, or the overall ODK community?
I joined ODK with the goal to hone my skills, gain new experiences and share knowledge among all in the community which I will continue to do in the future as well.

What advice would you give someone who’s just learned about ODK and is considering getting involved?
Introducing oneself on the slack/odk forum is the best start. Then I would suggest him/her to start getting acquainted with the tools and interacting with the community for clarifying all the doubts.

Let’s connect!


@Shobhit_Agarwal thanks for your contributions!