Ok, so I’ll probably catch all sorts of crud about this, and I’m really not picking on Tom who is doing excellent work in figuring out how best for schools to employ some of this technology, but here are all the things I (or my tech people) don’t understand about his latest posts on SUSE Linux becoming the leader in K-12 Linux deployments:
Put all of that together in a narrative that highlights a series of installation crashes and burns and you’ll see why I’m not ready to take that route.
First or all, who names all this stuff? At least I get Windows as a concept. And second, I know that most of these things aren’t nearly as scary as they sound, and in Tom’s world, they’re second nature. And finally, I’m not saying that Linux and open source solutions aren’t potentially better solutions for schools. But if you take my fairly high-tech, well supported (technology-wise) school as an example, it just ain’t going to happen here any time soon. Call it dancing with the girl you brought to the prom (or whatever that silly metaphor is,) but Linux on it’s surface just seems too “out there” when you’ve got something that works pretty well already, the resources to change are slim, and no one has any time to learn something new.
Tom Hoffman says
I think the question might be, “Who is Tom writing this for, anyhow?” I tend to split the difference between my geek readers and my teacher readers, which at times probably suits neither.
And if I was writing about the future of Windows in schools, I could spit out an equally opaque string of buzzwords, Longhorn, Avalon, XAML, CLI, WinFS… Either way, one is going to be foisted on you.
Chris Lehmann says
Right… and, as we dance with the Linux that brought Beacon, we figure we’ve saved over $500,000 in licensing, upgrades and software development because we’ve used Linux. And we weren’t isolated… the Altnernative Superintendency (RIP) of the old Board of Ed was a linux based platform as well, and there were (and are) dozens of schools using their services.