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Re: [school-discuss] Open-source alternatives

Thank you, Garry (and Doug Loss, too) for the great suggestions. Will look into the links you shared and pass them on to the schools here.

In a related question, are either of you (or anyone else on this list) using Freemind, CMAP, MAK or the other applications you mentioned in schools? I am keen to share "effective use" stories with folks in the region and would love to know where and how these tools are being used. Thanks!

Aaron TD

garry saddington wrote:
On Saturday 09 October 2004 21:53, Aaron Tyo-Dickerson wrote:
troy@banther-trx.homeunix.com wrote:
Hello everyone,

Is anyone on the list using completely open-source alternatives in
their schools? Specifically GNU/Linux and educational programs. I
would love to hear of the combinations, types of software, server setups.

Thanks for asking this question, Troy, as I have been meaning to join
the conversation with a similar inquiry. I work for a regional public
school consortium in Upstate New York and have been exploring FOSS
possibilities for our area schools.

We currently have one district piloting several FOSS apps on their
Windows PCs. Their "shortlist" includes OpenOffice, The Gimp and the
Firefox web browser. (Not a very daring move by the standards of the
FOSS community, perhaps, but pretty fringe stuff for this region.) At
the same time, another school district has contacted me with a request
very similar to what you ask here: Can I take a laptop PC, wipe its hard
drive and then created a FOSS-only educational computer?

While the obvious, short answer is "Yes, simply install any flavor of
Linux and then add some of the standard desktop apps (see the non-daring
list above) and *Presto* an 'educational computer'", the actual response
is "I am not sure." Schools have very specific needs and I have had
difficulty finding FOSS replacements for things like Inspiration, which
we rely on for graphic organizers / concept maps / idea webs. I have
searched SchoolForge and SourceForge and not found a similar product and
would love to know if there is one out there.

Aaron Tyo-Dickerson
Try Freemind at 


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