Archive for April, 2008|Monthly archive page

Open Education Disc

Today in class I spent quite a bit of time (possibly too much) talking about the Open Education Disc. Some people were immediately blown away by the thought of good, free, legal software. Others could have cared less 🙂 I saw those looks… For those of you in the first group here is a little more information about the Open Disc.

To find out about the programs available click the link above and go to the programs tab. The software on this disc is tested and virus free. The installation files are about 650 MB, which means installing all the programs would take up quite a bit of the hard drive space on your computer. However, the purpose here is to pick and choose programs that fit your needs. If you already have Microsoft Word and Excel, then installing the full OpenOffice suite might be unnecessary. You might just want to install OpenOffice Impress which is the comparable version of PowerPoint. If you have never had any problems with Outlook Express, then Mozilla Thunderbird is probably unnecessary.

Some of these programs will require some getting used to, others will be very intuitive. If you have no clue what a piece of software does, then it probably is not necessary for you 🙂 I strongly encourage you to talk to your parents prior to installing any software on the computer. Show them the link to the Open Disc, talk to them about open source (or have them email me), and only install programs they feel will be beneficial. After all, odds are they purchased the computer you’re using even if it is “your” computer.

Open Education Disc Highlights
Open Office Suite (Word processing, spreadsheet, presentation, database programs)
Scribus (desktop publishing a la Microsoft Publisher)
Mozilla Firefox (Internet browser, check out Ad-Block Plus extension)
Audacity (audio recording and editing)
Tux Type 2 (typing game)
Celestia and Stellarium (astronomy and planetarium software)