March of the Penguins-David Thornburg

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Thornburg starts the session by giving a point for his new book. Might have to pick that up after the session. A book on open-source and open-source programs.

Linux started from a high school student in Helsinki, Finland

“I want students to use the programs they will use when they leave school.” and argument that has fueled the Mac vs PC debate for decades.

Sprint runs there how system on Linux.

Gartner Group study of 2000:

90% of the worlds 2000 largest companies will use open source software by 2010

70% will have migrated to Linux

Which OS should we be using and looking at for schools if 70% of the worlds largest companies will be using Linux.

State of affairs (estimated)

Windows 92%

Linux 5%

Mac 3%

Linux installations come at expense of Windows

edubuntu is an OS designed specifically for education

New Hampshire spending:

Win XP $72/year

Office $52/year

Inspiration $24

Photoshop $279

Sound Forge $45

Dreamweaver $189

LCSI Microworlds $89

That’s about $500 per desktop plus $140/year.

The free alternatives:


Open Office






TuxPaint-Free KidPix program for kids

How can free software be reliable

Created by people who depend on it

Support is truly global

Pride of authorship

Example: Wikipedia

Wikipedia: an open source encyclopedia

anyone can add articles

Largest encyclopedia in the world

Almost as accurate as Encyclopaedia Britannica

In major errors Britannica and Wikipedia had the same ratio

In minor errors Britannica had 1/3 more errors than Wikipedia

Celestia is now supported by NASA

Dr. Geo Geometric constructions


Benefits of free open source software

Can send software home with kids

No license issues for multiple system installation

bug reports go to human beings

Developers are usually responsive

Can fix bugs yourself if you want

Limitations of free open source software

Titles are based on programmers interest

Forks can emerge (StarOffice vs. OpenOffice)

Commercial titles are coming!

When you don’t have to buy the basic programs it leaves more money for special programs need in the classroom.

Linux and large installations

The state of Indiana is rolling out 300,000 computers all using Linux

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I started blogging in 2005 and found it such a powerful way to reflect and share my thinking about technology, this generation, and how we prepare students for their future not our past.

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