Open-source and school systems

So why are school systems not adopting open-source to further their technology plans? Beats the living daylights out of me.
From the local school systems, you can read student blogs about the slow Internet connections, or how there is no technology capable to teach them what they wish: here and here.


Let us state some obvious facts:


  • school districts have NO MONEY.
  • Internet at schools are slow.
  • Manpower is minimal and overworked.
  • Good pieces of software are difficult to find.
  • Technical training is sparse.

If no one agrees with this, please step forward. Otherwise, here is the solution to the rest of the problems and my rant.
WHY are we not considering open-source software? We have OpenOffice, Blender, GIMP, FireFox, and an array of other things that are comparable to the Windows environment today. Being that they are good replacements (I have personally switched over for more than a few years and have had no issues), I think that I need not point to the first bullet.
My personal opinion, is that the network design could use a LOT of work. Bottlenecks are the last thing that people should be seeing in a good network design, and networks are supposed to be as transparent as local machines if the bandwidth is provided. Technical jargon aside, here’s what I just said: The speed of a remote computer should not matter if there is sufficient connection, and it should act like it was placed right next to you. Example: Take a telephone call. A call to your mother on the West Coast doesn’t have a slight delay. She can still tell you to wash behind your ears, just as you were right next to her. Correct?
Computers? I benchmarked Quake III back in my days of college. My P2-450 could outproduce my PIII-600 any day of the week. Take a wild guess which one was running linux versus Windows.
So open-source not only allows school systems to save money on needed materials such as books and other products, but also allows usage of old hardware (computers), has good availability of software tools, and allows a network to be redesigned with little to no cost? All of this would definitely satisfy a low manpower base and allow for more stability from both staff and teaching perspective.
Greensboro Linux User Group (GLUG) is standing by to help with training, if there was need to train in linux utilities. Any linux user group from any locale would be happy to oblige likewise.
Before some Windows fanatics come and tell me how many bugs there are in open-source, let me point to this and at OpenBSD. Can you claim that Microsoft servers have only had ONE remote hole in eight years? OpenBSD can.
Here is the biggest point of them all: I am not saying that we should get rid of Microsoft’s Windows operating system. Microsoft does a good job at providing great discounts for software to schools and that should not be throw out. There should be playing in both ends of the court, instead of just one end, to maximize the school systems’ interests.
So in the end, what’s STOPPING the school systems from using open-source to better the lives of their students, teachers, and staff? NOTHING. What are we waiting for? Beats the living daylights out of me.

  • adamwenner

    people are afraid of open-source, theres your answer, they like a nice GUI environment where they can see everything laid out in front of them
    it will be a few years before open-source catches on, get used to it, and its people like us who will rake in the big cash when support needs arise
    –adam

  • adamwenner

    people are afraid of open-source, theres your answer, they like a nice GUI environment where they can see everything laid out in front of them
    it will be a few years before open-source catches on, get used to it, and its people like us who will rake in the big cash when support needs arise
    –adam

  • *laugh* Open-source has already caught on. Question is if school systems will continue to lag behind similar to rural communities. Amusingly enough, when I moved to the South, I was amazed that technology was a couple years behind when it came to non-techies. The only way to really bring it forth to the standards of the real world… prove me wrong.

  • *laugh* Open-source has already caught on. Question is if school systems will continue to lag behind similar to rural communities. Amusingly enough, when I moved to the South, I was amazed that technology was a couple years behind when it came to non-techies. The only way to really bring it forth to the standards of the real world… prove me wrong.