Get Stuff Done with Your Computer #linux #ubuntu


Simple Scan app on UbuntuLinux and derivative distros

Although I should be writing about something serious (like this or this in Texas), the truth is, I find myself gravitating towards stuff like this from Cory Doctorow, My New Ubuntu-flavored Thinkpad is Computing Heaven:
I was once a computer hobbyist. I loved to geek out about computers. I can still really get into the subject, but for the most part, I just want to Get Stuff Done with my computer. I am pleased as punch to have arrived at such an undramatic place in my computing life.
Undramatic. I remember my two year stint when I was loading GNU/Linux distros on every machine I had access to, just to go through the experience. I learned so much in that time, and I continue to learn today. That time was the opposite of undramatic as I tried to get wireless drivers to work, etc. Yet, it's gotten so much easier since then...everything just seems to work. Even my daughter has taken to Linux, realizing how much easier it is for her to connect our HP scanner--purchased for $60 eons ago at Walmart--and use it using Simple-Scan on UbuntuLinux than it is Windows 7 Starter Edition (which I loathe).

So, given those experiences,  I can't argue with remarks like this one below, Run Linux in Your Browser:
Linux is often considered as a geeky OS when compared to Windows and Mac OS X, however, over the past few years it has become much easier to use and almost emulates a desktop environment which is similar to Windows and Mac.
In fact, it's unbelievable how much I've come to prefer my Peppermint ICE distro of Ubuntulinux, and the truth is, any version of Ubuntu is preferable to Windows 7. And, given the plethora of free open source software available, why use Windows?

The answer is simply habit for many school districts. It's their security blanket. The techies love Windows 7 because of what it allows them to do, how they can keep users from doing things. These days, though, it's so easy to bypass the operating system on a computer using tools like USB Universal Installer or Linux Live USB Creator.

It might be fun to keep grumping about why the rest of the world doesn't get it, but to be honest, when you have such weighty topics as a broken legislative system that can't fund Texas schools properly, maybe its time to show folks how to embrace free, open source software since no cost software and unemployment (plenty of time, no cost) go together....don't they?
Schools, or any organization for that matter will not do anything without an incentive. People, particularly people in authority, will not just wake up one morning and say to themselves “I know what I’ll do today- I’ll go into my workplace and totally change the company (or school’s) technology services completely.” it just doesn’t happen. (Source: How to Sell Linux to Schools)
And, of course, consider this story:
A school system wanting to save money, switches from Windows to Linux?  It appears the Dysart School System in Arizona actually looked at some of their older computers, about 1/3 of their 3,000 (about the size of my school system), to keep them running...Dysart Schools estimate they save about $100,000 on licensing, and they may, they may also save on open source applications, like Libre Office in place of Microsoft Office, but these are one time license fees. (Read More Here)
Just get stuff done....





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Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

Comments

Doug said…
Great post, Miguel. I had posted something along that line here.
http://dougpete.wordpress.com/2011/05/02/a-free-educational-idea/

It's a shame that people aren't at least giving Ubuntu a try to see where it might fit into education. It's a great environment - I'm on my Dell Netbook with Ubuntu right now - and like you say, it just works.
Miguel Guhlin said…
@Doug thanks. I agree. I've retweeted your post, too. More info and knowledgeable opinions out there, the better.

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