[clug] Re: Linux Learners Group idea

Paul Wayper paul.wayper at anu.edu.au
Fri Jun 16 00:50:11 GMT 2006

steve jenkin wrote:
> Imagine the case they can put to the Govt:
> - we'd like to drop the tens of thousands of dollars paid to Microsoft
> - we'd like to *keep* old computers for xxx purposes (servers, 
> firewalls, print servers, ...)
> - we'd like to buy lower-spec computers and keep them longer
I heard Pia Waugh giving a talk about OSS in education, and she said 
something like "When you've given them a proposal to save millions of 
dollars and the minister hasn't even opened it to look at it, you know 
there's politics at work, not economics."  So while I love the idea of 
talking to schools, teachers, parents and children and getting them to 
see the benefits of FLOSS, these are not the decision makers and they 
are not allowed the leeway of installing whatever they like.

I think you'd agree that talking to people who are interested in e.g. 
Linux is more likely to be useful than to try and prove the usefulness 
of Linux to a bunch of disinterested schoolchildren.  Teachers have a 
lot on their plate - I speak as the son of a teacher aide and the 
brother-in-law of an ex highschool science teacher.  Proselytising the 
heathens is very inefficient and mostly engenders the stereotype of the 
rabid tech loony.  I'd rather start the groundswell movement with the 
people who are already interested than preaching on a street corner.

(This may come across as being a bit harsh, but I mean it positively and 

Have fun,


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