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Re: [school-discuss] Talking Linux in School is a Serious Blunder!
Michael Dean wrote:
I think that it is a major blunder to view any rational thrust into the schools adaptation of Open Source as a Linux initiative.
Especially when schools, who are goal and objective driven, must sift through thousands of duplicatory packages, many of dubious quality, that comprise what I call the "kitchen sink" distros such as Redhat, Suse, Mandrake and Debian. We must, instead look at open source as a collection of tools to bbe selected from the perspective of the teachers and admins. We must produce an Educational System which is based on a minimalist, goal driven philosophy. FreeBSD would work equally well in schools, and it has a more rational license. I am collecting papers for an edited books on Transforming Schools Through Goal Driven Open Source Software. Any educator, or professional who can produce any contribution to this title would be welcome to submit. Thanks you.
I fail to see how an honest discussion of "goal driven open source software" would not include Linux.
You may just as well have stated: I think that it is a major blunder to view any rational thrust into the schools adaptation of Open Source as a BSD initiative. Especially when schools, who are goal and objective driven, must sift through thousands of duplicatory packages, many of dubious quality, that comprise what I call the "kitchen sink" distros such as FreeBSD, NetBSD, and OpenBSD. We must, instead look at open source as a collection of tools to bbe selected from the perspective of the teachers and admins. We must produce an
Educational System which is based on a minimalist, goal driven
philosophy. Ubuntu Linux would work equally well in schools, and it has >>a more rational license...
I am grateful that my short note announcing my request for conceptual and >implementation assistance in a book deal already bought by a major >publisher (not your average linux publisher) generated such passion.
No passion really, just trying to let you know your statements will
probably not generate the help you claim to be looking for. And I was
bored, Friday and all, been a long work week. I'm actually killing time
now, down with a cold, cloudy and windy out.
And I started a new strand. How is that top posting? Pretty soon, I'll >be told to point upwind when I take a leak in the forest! Which in my >opinion, many so-called open source consultants are doing now when it comes >to their potential customer base.
Did I accuse you of top posting? I think someone else did in another
thread. And rightfully so at that.
My main point was NOT Linux versus BSD versus osx versus Dos for that >matter. My point is that educators, and nonprofits, and small
businesses are forced to deal with a lot of garbage tacked on to the Great >Promised God Linux, in the form of mindless, purposeless unplanned >distributions that just throw everything in there.
Sounds like you have some emotional venting to do before any sound
logical discussion can ensue. From a pragmatic standpoint face it, the
various Linux distros are the most mature open source OS choices.
Ubantu happens to
be politically correct at the moment. Ain't that grand! Do you think >any educator wants to forego his sanity by being on the ubantu
discussion lists? If you don't have anything else to do in the day
I don't know what political correctness has to do with producing, "an
Educational System which is based on a minimalist, goal driven
philosophy", but think about this: Do you think any educator wants to
forego *her* sanity by being on the FreeBSD discussion list?
Also, I have found that you bring 10 open source consultants in and each >one has a preferred ready made solution. The only business process >management stuff is BSD licensed Java.
Java, yuck, what a nightmare.
In fact, almost all the hot Java
based stuff is now BSD/MIT licensed, simply because big corporations are >scrared of the GNU provisions.
And just why are they afraid? Could it be they want it to be easier to
make a buck off of the software? The, "GNU provisions", ensure good
service to the customer if money is to be made. MySQL, Sleepycat,
Redhat, show profit can be had with GPL software.
Large school organization should equally
Cautious of what? Sounds like you are spreading FUD.
My perspective goes beyond the sharp snipes about the ports updating of >freebsd (Gentoo certainly liked it enough to refine it). I merely offered >up BSD because it is competent stuff, and you don't have the GNU police >(translate unemployed consultants) staring down your throat, and which >really covers the ass of the major distros standing in line with their >hands out, waiting for someone else to refine something for them.
Consultants are GNU police? Is this the Fear part of the FUD? Major
distros with their hands out? The major distros employ many of the
contributors to the GNU/Linux software base. How is that waiting for
someone else to refine something?
That sure is pragmatic. As we all realize, a lot of BSD stuff was good >enough to be pirated by Redhat.
Pirated? I seem to remember some missing copyright notices that were
quickly cleared up, that is about it I think. Explain how it is
possible to pirate BSD licensed code.
Another example of pragmatic. This is
not innovation, this is not revolution, this is just business as usual. >There is no real difference today between Microsoft and Redhat, except >size.
Well, nothing except GPL licensed code, the Fedora project, and distros
such as White Box Linux. Oh, and the lack of convicted monopolist status.
Suse is now Novell's savior? And we are all for the underdog,
Suse is producing revenue for Novell, whether Novell can leverage Linux
to save themselves is another matter.
I honestly feel sometimes that the GNU license is really fascist, because >if you fall for the little red sucker, and then try to build on it, for >your own little playground, you are forced to give these dumn guys behind >these kitchen sink distros your stuff.
Facist? Red sucker? Name calling now? Is there a rational statement
to be had from you?
If it's in your own playground you don't have to distribute it. Perhaps
you should read the GPL.
The kitchen sink distro guys are dumb enough to make a profit. Are you
against making a profit? Are you a little red sucker? Your misspelling
of dumb in your accusation erodes it's credibility.
Have you built something useful? Maybe if it really is useful it will
be included in a kitchen sink distro and become popular enough for you
to dual license it and set up a profitable company. Perhaps it is
something small but will create a reputation you can use for gainful
IBM, CA, HP and all
the so-called corporate contributors to open source know better, and get > > around the rules easily.
They recognize a growth market when they see one. If they can co-opt
some open source to sell their products they will. Good for them.
It's like going to Sears and having to buy this 2300 pound tool chest, complete with contents when you only wanted a wrench, because Sears thinks this is best for you. And then there are these guys who tell you that sure there are literally thousands of pieces of undocumented stuff in this kitchen sink distros and this is best for you? How!? Instead of the space wasted with Sears, we have our precious TIME wasted with kitchen sink distros. This is far worse. I can always buy space, buy buying time is harder. I believe these distros are obtuse and
obfuscated solely to drive business in the direction of hacks who failed to complete their college education. And because no one is invested enough to put some common sense to work and look at purpose first, not their purpose, but the purpose of the customer. Unless of course you don't want customers, only consumers, like the phone companies.
Download it first, try before you buy, if you need to buy it at all.
The free download may be enough for your purposes.
If you are hiring hacks who failed to complete college you have no one
to blame but yourself. Good help is hard to find in many fields.
Sounds like an opportunity for a good writer to make some money.
Perhaps producing some missing documentation for a popular kitchen sink
distro about Transforming Schools Through Goal Driven Open Source
Software will be profitable.
And how is this different from Microsoft's paternalistic stuff? It is still this pre-conceived product, produced supposedly for the greater good of the many and then sold in computer stores? No wonder Suse, Mandrake and Redhat failed at retail, they weren't giving customers the value customers wanted, just what these guys thought the customer wanted, without doing any market research at all. Boy were they all wrong. Novell's offering is no improvement either. Linux on the desktop is still far away from what the common man wants or needs, and the zealots out there need to understand that, and provide an iterative solution, which they are just not doing. Proliferation of features, rather than refinement of usage are two separate dogs. Educators want one good work dog that provides growling competence, not a dozen toy dogs that yips at your heals.
That is fairly well said.
In the public's eye, not rabid fanatical programmers with a mafioso set of axes to grind, "linux" is not Linus Torvalds 2.6.11 kernel, which they don't even see, linux is all the crap added onto it -- the more crap the merrier. I honestly feel sometimes that the GNU license is really fascist, because if you fall for the little red sucker, and then try to build on it, for your own little playground, you are forced to give these dumn guys behind these kitchen sink distros your stuff. IBM, CA, HP and all the so-called corporate contributors to open source know better, and get around the rules easily. But schools?
Uh, Linux is Linus Torvalds 2.6.11 kernel. The entire OS is commonly
called Linux, that is true. Repeating yourself?
In my mind, it is wrong to have a closed perspective, where every idea is piecemealed out and subjected to a nasty ideologically based
diatribe. My main point, which I probably didn't communicate well enough, is that the real battle is NOT at the device level, the
operating system level, not even at the middleware level, but at the user application level. And here, the Linux/BSD GUI is still nothing more than a poor copy of other's. And it is here where the IBM's of the world are having a field day. And it is at this level where
purpose-drive, objective driven well document software needs to be provided to educators.
Your perspective appears pretty closed from your statements.
Hooray for applications. And yes, writing nothing about device or OS
level versus applications in your original post does result in a failure
of communicating the idea.
The X Window system on Linux/BSD is a good copy of the X Window system.
The various window managers are what they are. It's nice to have a
choice, unlike with some other systems.
So provide some objective driven well documented software to educators
and stop whining.