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Linuxtopia: OSS in the Classroom

Nov 08, 1999, 18:40 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Lucy Stephens)

[ Thanks to Lucy Stephens for this link. ]

"The continuing rise of development of Open Source Software is perhaps one of the most powerful movements in the software industry today. Open source software has impacted the computing world by producing successful applications such as the Linux OS and the Apache Web Server. The Apache Web Server runs on more than 57 percent of the world's Web sites...."

"One area that is bound to benefit greatly from open source software, is the Education field. With nearly 50 million students enrolled in US public and private schools nationwide and huge demand for adult and continuing education is there not a market for low cost, reliable and efficient software? (RAND Report) Who better to meet this need than the open source industry? To date, schools have had to rely on commercial software companies for their software and with budget cutbacks, there are many schools who just cannot afford to offer their students up to date technology. The economics of the school market do not work for software developers, for a variety of reasons. Schools spend very little on software. Schools continue to rely on traditional texts and the textbook market differs profoundly from the software market. Home "edutainment" materials do not always or readily translate to the classroom, although some crossover is evident."

"As a teacher I have been in some schools that could afford to have a fully equipped computer room with all the latest software and I have also been in others that had an old Macintosh in the corner of each classroom that was only good to run a selection of games. There are already a number of efforts underway in an attempt to deliver Linux to the schools. The four projects that I have come across are OSES, SEUL-EDU, OpenClassroom and LITC."

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