Open Source Software Movement Gaining Grass Roots Momentum in Schools?

Tech hungry schools should look to Linux (Via Moving at the Speed of Creativity.) Wesley Freyer: “That being said, I think most school districts are being fiscally irresponsible today if they are not moving towards open source computing solutions, at least for some of their campuses and instructional applications.”

I can report some related good news. For my presentation about open source software at the CUE conference this past week, I prepared 40 handouts thinking I’d be lucky to get 20 participants. By the time I started speaking I had about 80 people in the room! The facilitator went back for 20 more handouts twice! At the end of the session, participants approached me with specific questions about applications such as Open Office, and about Linux. Better yet, the evals revealed a crowd that left the room jazzed about getting started with open source software! I suppose the humor I added to the presentation paid off. I did not expect to feel so successful about this session, but I’m thrilled that perhaps the open source movement might finally be picking up some grass roots momentum in schools.

Thursday evening at the conference, my webcast interview with Chris Walsh was also a success, as was the open source pavilion (in the exhibit hall) run by my fellow interviewee, Steve Hargadon.

4 Responses to “Open Source Software Movement Gaining Grass Roots Momentum in Schools?”

  1. Educational Technology and Life » Blog Archive » IBM Is Going Microsoft-Free Internally Says:

    [...] IBM Is Going Microsoft-Free Internally (Via OpenOffice.org Training, Tips, and Ideas.) Solveig Haugland: “IBM has canceled their contract with Microsoft. They will be using RedHat for the operating system and their own riff on OpenOffice.org for their office suite.” Wow. Speaking of momentum… this will trickle down to schools. :) [...]

  2. Doug Belshaw Says:

    Congratulations on the success of your presentation, Mark! :) I think you’re right about ‘grass roots momentum’. Here in the UK a publication was made by BECTA about open-source in education, which I think is having a slow-burning impact…

    Doug

  3. Mark Wagner Says:

    Thanks for the link, Doug. I think I’ll drop that into the main site feed. :)