[FLOSS-Desktops] May Update

Patrick Masson masson at opensource.org
Thu May 25 20:28:41 UTC 2017

Hi All,

I just wanted to give you all a few updates...


We're very excited to share that Kris Navratil, Maple Hill Middle
School Tech Teacher, Dr. Michele McColgan, Professor of Physics, Siena
College, and Madeline Hagen, a senior at Siena and Student Mentor for
Urban Scholars, will present at "All Things Open" (https://allthingsope
n.org/), the largest open source conference on the East coast. The
group will run a workshop intoducing the FLOSS Desktops project, and
how attendees can start up their own local efforts. I am very thankful
to the Open Source Initiative (http://opensource.org) and especially
Linux Fund (http://www.linuxfund.org/), who provided funding for the
team's travel to, and accommodations in Raleigh, North Carolina.


We've updated the curriculum: 
 * "MAKE 3: Computer Identification" now includes pictures of the
individual computer components, rather than a picture of an assembled
computer (a specific model, for example a "Dell Optiplex 775"). These
general images remove the need to change out the image in the packets
to match the computers your kids may be using. It also reduces
confusion, as some students were expecting to see the same
configuration in their computers as presented in the packets (thanks
for the idea Siena College Urban Scholars!).
 * We've added a new definition for RAM memory based on feedback from
the "Libre Lions" at North Colonie CSD's Loudonville Elementary.
 * We moved "MAKE 5: BIOS Identification," to before "MAKE 6: Wipe Your
Hard Drive," as kids will need to get into the BIOS to set their boot
order to start-up from DBAN and wipe their drives.
 * We made MAKE 7: Network Cabling & Access, a stand-alone MAKE
(previously it was a suggested MAKE). We had a few participants that
wanted to include it, but it also is a nice prerequisite for the Linux
install MAKE as the systems need network connectivity to download
updates, and those evil proprietary 3rd party apps--we're talking about
you Adobe Flash ;-)
 * We've added a new MAKE (MAKE 8), "Get your Computer ‘Operating’"
which gets kids to think about operating systems by comparing devices
they may use, e.g. what OS is running on their iPhone or Droid, or even
devices they may not think of as computers: Kindles, a cable box, Roku,
or even family car's info-tainment system, etc. 
 * MAKE 9, "Introduction to the Linux Operating System" is also new and
introduces the point and click features/functionality of Linux
 * Make 12 is also new, and is the first step to "coding" using a
simple text editor "gedit." Like MAKE 3, which included a glossary of
computer hardware terms, a glossary of HTML tags is included so
students can explore the elements of a web page.

We also want to add one more MAKE to get kids starting to code in a bit
more of a formal/structured way. Mozilla has a great online resource,
Thimble (https://thimble.mozilla.org/en-US/). It includes an online
coding editor, which renders a completed web page in real time--kids
see what they are coding as they type it. It also includes several
projects with lesson plans. It is a great resource on its own, but I
think it could serve as an excellent transition tool to move kids from
FLOSS Desktops to programs like Hour of Code, Code-in, or even Summer
of Code.


A big thank you to Jim Yox, IT Director at Schodack CSD, who invited me
to present the FLOSS Desktops program to the IT Directors group. After
the event I was contacted by Ryan Proper, Technology Integration
Specialist at Taconic Hills Central School District, with interest in
starting up a local project. I went out just this week to give them a
presentation, and was just informed that the district plans on
beginning a new FLOSS Desktops program next Fall! Welcome Taconic
Hills! (Ryan joined this email list too, so feel free to respond here
to welcome him to the community.)

If you know of any other districts, community groups or clubs that
might be interested, send them along and I will be happy to talk about
how they too can participate.


Well it was bound to happen as we continue to grow. I've set up a
Twitter account for the FLOSS Desktops project at https://twitter.com/F
LOSSDesktops Please follow along and feel free to share you group's
photos, updates, etc. I'll also be sure the Open Source Initiative
account re-tweets anything that goes out there.


As always, thank you so much to all of you who make the project work.
Feel free to send along ideas, questions, etc. I am happy to help.

Also remember, this email list and the project wiki (https://wiki.opens
n/) are for you! Feel free to send a note to the group over this email
discussion list (just email flossdesktops at opensource.org) and it will
go out to everyone, or post something to the wiki.

Thanks again,

  ||  |   | || |  ||  ||  | || |  |||  |  |||  

Patrick Masson
General Manager & Director, Open Source Initiative
855 El Camino Real, Ste 13A, #270
Palo Alto, CA 94301
United States
Office: (415) 857-5398
Mobile: (970) 4MASSON
Freenode: OSIMasson
Email: masson at opensource.org
Website: www.opensource.org
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