Monday, July 11, 2005

NECC 2005 Report

K12 Free and Open Source Software--News & More

Welcome to NECC '05 Attendees
A special welcome to all those who attended the Free
and Open Source Software Center at NECC '05 in
Philadelphia. (NECC is the National Educational
Computing Conference, the world's largest educational
technology conference for teachers and technology
coordinators.) The show was a great success, and our
thanks to all who contributed their time and efforts
to demonstrate free and open source software--with
special thanks to the folks at ISTE for all their

Some photos from the show... -

The Open CD - Open Source & Free Software for Windows
Those who stopped by the Free Software Center at
NECC 2005 were able to pick up a copy of "The Open
CD," with free software for Windows users. This CD
includes OpenOffice, Firefox, GIMP, and much
more--all free to use and copy! If you didn't get a
copy or weren't at the show, you can download the CD
from the link below or call and we'll send you a copy. -

Ubuntu Linux - The Next Great Linux Desktop (and for free!)
One of the most popular give-aways at the show was
the two-CD set of Ubuntu Linux. One CD allows you
to test out Linux by putting it in your CD-Rom drive
and rebooting your machine. The operating system
and programs actually run from your CD without
affecting your hard drive or installed programs.
The other CD is for the brave who decide to install
Ubuntu as your operating system on a PC (a great

We love Ubuntu here and think you will, too. The
link below will take you to their main website,
where you can download the CDs (Windows or Mac), or
they will send you the actual CDs for free. It
doesn't get better than that.

Ubuntu Linux Main Website -

Moodle: No Room at the Inn!
Moodle is a course management system (CMS). It's a
free, Open Source software package to help educators
create effective online learning communities. And
gauging by the sold-out sessions at NECC, we're
going to hear a lot more about it this year.

We've recently installed Moodle on a server here in
our offices, and it was pretty easy. Not "brainless,"
but not "rocket science" either. And for those who
want to try it out without any work, there are
hosting services for as little as $5 a month for Moodle.

Moodle's Website -

Resource Corner: Linux Educational Application Index
Some 600 Open Source Educational applications for
the Linux environment, categorized by topic. From
Astronomy to Typing.

Educational Application Index -

Resource Corner: Table of Linux Replacements for Windows
43 pages (printed out) of Windows-equivalent or
replacement programs that are available in Linux.
From technical to recreational, covering pretty much
everything you might want to find for Linux.
Regularly updated.

Equivalent / Replacement Table -

Harvard Business School on Open Source Software
"The Simple Economics of Open Source," a working
paper by Josh Lerner and Jean Tirole, is summarized
by Martha Lagace, Senior Editor, HBS Working
Knowledge newsletter. "Why in the world would
anyone take the time to write complicated software
programs for
free?" she asks, and then describes their answers to
this question.

Harvard Business School Newsletter -

"Heart Transplant:" Linux to the Rescue in Utah Lutheran
250 students, an annual technology budget of $15,000
(used just to keep the administrative and teacher
computers running), and 60 Pentium one and Pentium two
computers that are languishing in the classrooms...
what's a school to do?

Read how Principal Dennis Fangmann and Technology
Rescue resuscitated Grace Lutheran's computing
resources by installing a Linux Server, and turning
their old computers into cutting-edge thin clients.
And on a shoestring budget, no less!

Read the story... -