eTECH Conference has more in the way of Open Source
The opening keynote by Will Richardson was not only inspirational, his points about how students should be on the web was intriguing. I agreed when he said, “The most important web site on the Internet today is Wikipedia.”
Could it be that there was a definite increase in the presence of Linux and Open Source software?:
- I missed a general “Open Source and Ed” presentation by the Cincinnati Archdiocese. Too bad there were no posted notes or links.
- A Tech Support display on the show floor by John Rundag of Logan Elm Local SD was worth stopping at. John had an old PIII Dell setup running Ubuntu 6.04. Although there wasn’t much to see, he had a lot to tell about a Tech Teacher (who I met, but I didn’t get his name) spending $2,800 to get 25 old PCs with monitors. John then helped locate a Linux distro and get the lab set up with a a very basic server to store files. They did not try LTSP since the server would have to be beefier than what they had. The Tech Teacher couldn’t say enough good things about Ubuntu and his lab, especially the reliability.
- A Concurrent Session titled “CiscoIP phone Conversion, 2 Years Later” was appropriately titled. Conducted by John Nickell of North Royalton City SD, it was exactly the kind of information you’d want to hear if you were thinking of making the VOIP move.
- The Open Source Web-Based Solutions for Schools session by Kevin Stachowski dealt NOT with applications you’d run on the web (like TadaLists ) but finding applications on sourceforge.net and installing them on your own web server to provide services to your own students and staff. Quite interesting and to-the-point.
- The Linux Desktop and You was an Exhibitor Session that didn’t list the presenter. Turns out a quite competent speaker named Don Vosburg out of Indianapolis was a representative of Novell and spoke of the benefits of SLED. Although we seven or eight in the audience had to endure a 3 minute video commercial that was supposed to be humorous, the meat of the presentation was quite informative. I learned about iTALC, clonezilla, Novell’s ZenWorks, Cmap and iFolder. The subject of Novell’s patent arrangement with Microsoft didn’t come up. Indiana’s Access program was also discussed. Sounds impressive.
Meanwhile, Cisco seemed to be absent. Last year they had a large trailer for demoing VOIP. This year, the program showed their booth on the map, but on the floor, there was nothing there!