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JTELSS13 Why is free software important in education


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Workshop at 9th JTEL Summerschool in Limassol, Cyprus.

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JTELSS13 Why is free software important in education

  1. 1. Why is free software important ineducation?Edmund Laugasson, PhD student fromTallinn University, Institute of Informatics, Estoniaedmund.laugasson@gmail.com
  2. 2. Keywords● sharing the knowledge● sharing the tools● social responsibility● independence● learning● saving costs● quality
  3. 3. One short engagement video :)Linux vs Mac and PC Spoof 1. Duration 55s
  4. 4. Exercise 1: Description● the next slide will display some choices - please write yourchoice and explanation clearly to the paper given to you● wrinkle your paper and throw it to someone else at least twice● after receiving a paper, read it loud <-- this would be your newanswer● people with similar answers will go to one group● prepare a poster● spinner will choose the speaker● ≼5 minutes to discuss, 1 min to present in front of others –≼all presenters: please come to the front and stay untileveryone has been presenting.
  5. 5. Exercise 1: TaskWhy free and open-source software (FOSS)is important?A) to save costsB) to be malware freeC) have better security, qualityD) is developed by community (sharing knowledge)E) there are no limitation to share software with othersF) it is ethical, responsible thing to do
  6. 6. Exercise 1: VotingvotesA) to save costsB) to be malware freeC) have better security, qualityD) is developed by community (sharingknowledge)E) there are no limitation to share softwarewith othersF) it is ethical, responsible thing to do
  7. 7. Terms● free software - is software provided under terms that guaranteethe freedoms of its users (individually and in groups) to run it,adapt it to their needs, and redistribute it with or without changes.● freeware - is software that is available for use at no monetary costor for an optional fee but usually (although not necessarily) withone or more restricted usage rights.● proprietary software - is computer software licensed underexclusive legal right of the copyright holder with the intent that thelicensee is given the right to use the software only under certainconditions, and restricted from other uses, such as modification,sharing, studying, redistribution, or reverse engineering.● vendor lock-in - makes a customer dependent on a vendor forproducts and services, unable to use another vendor withoutsubstantial switching costs.
  8. 8. Why is FOSS important in education?FOSS: free and open-source software● user freedom– FOSS respects users freedom and social solidarityof his community– proprietary software take away users freedom,keeping them divided and helpless
  9. 9. Why is FOSS important in education?Divided because they are forbidden from sharingthe program, and helpless because the usersdont have the source code of the program.That is, they cannot change it, they cannot findout what the program is really doing, and it can dovery bad things. free and open-source software
  10. 10. Why is FOSS important in education?Free Software means that the user has the 4 essential freedoms:Freedom 0 is the freedom to run the program for any purpose.Freedom 1 is the freedom to study the source code of the program andchange it to make it do what you wish.Freedom 2 is the freedom to help your neighbor; that is, the freedom tomake and distribute exact copies of the program whenever you want.freedom 3 is the freedom to contribute to your community; that is,the freedom to make and distribute copies of your modified versions ofthe program. free and open-source software
  11. 11. Why is FOSS important in education?With these four freedoms a program is FreeSoftware because the social system for its use anddistribution is an ethical system that respectseveryones freedom and the freedom of thecommunity of users.Software must be Free because we all deservefreedom, we all deserve to be allowed to participatein a free community.Therefore, schools should teach mostly FreeSoftware. There are four reasons why this is so. free and open-source software
  12. 12. Why is FOSS important in education?The most shallow reason is to save money. Schoolsdo not have enough money, so they should notwaste their money paying for permission to useproprietary software.This is an obvious reason, but some proprietarysoftware companies usually eliminate this reasonby donating copies of their proprietary programs tothe school at no charge or at a small price. free and open-source software
  13. 13. Why is FOSS important in education?The reason why they do that is to get students addicted.It is a malicious plan. This is a plan to use schools asinstruments to impose a permanent dependence onstudents.If a school teaches how to use a proprietary program,the student will be dependent on that program and afterhe graduates he will have to pay to use that program.He will probably work for a company that does notreceive copies of the program free of charge. free and open-source software
  14. 14. Why is FOSS important in education?Therefore, proprietary software developers useschools to impose permanent dependence on thewhole society.Schools must refuse to participate in such amalicious plan because schools have a socialmission which is to educate the next generation tobe good citizens of a capable, strong, independent,cooperating and free society.This can only be achieved by teaching FreeSoftware. Schools should mostly use Free Softwareand rare cases proprietary software. free and open-source software
  15. 15. Why is FOSS important in education?But there is a deeper reason: to form goodprogrammers, because in order to learn goodprogramming skills students need to read lots ofcode and write lots of code.To learn to write good code for big programsstudents need to write small changes in the code ofbig programs.All this is possible only with Free Software. OnlyFree Software allows education in informationtechnology. free and open-source software
  16. 16. Why is FOSS important in education?But there is still a deeper reason: to teach goodcitizenship, because schools have the mission toteach not only facts and technical skills, but above allthe spirit of good will, the habit of helping others.Therefore, each class should have this rule:students, if you bring a program to the class, you cannot keep it for yourself, you must share it with therest of the class. free and open-source software
  17. 17. Why is FOSS important in education?The school should practice what it preaches, itshould introduce Free Software in the classroom.All schools should migrate to Free Software andteach Free Software because each school shouldparticipate in leading society towards freedom andsocial solidarity. free and open-source software
  18. 18. Exercise 2 – what you expect fromsoftware?● let us form groups of 2..3 people● think and write down about the topic:What you expext from software? E.g. reliability,safety, stability etcGive some good/bad examples● up to 5 minutes to discuss● up to 1 minutes to present- speak about just one thingyou have chosen amongothers – why is it mostimportant in your opinion
  19. 19. Exercise 2: Results
  20. 20. How software is developed● proprietary software– developers are working in closed environment– creating closed source code / software– communicating only inside the company– outside communication is not allowed due to businesssecret+ they get paid– they are not members of free community, because theirwork is secret
  21. 21. How software is developed● free and open-source software (FOSS) –+ developers are working in open community+ creating open-source code / software+ anyone is encouraged to join with community+ manpower for development is much bigger than incase of proprietary software― will not get paid+ honoured by community+ good records to CV
  22. 22. Exercise 3: expensesRemain to old system● initial costs to buy● licence fees● custom development● deployment costs● teaching costs● supportFOSS: free and open-source softwareSwitching to free software● custom development● deployment costs● teaching costs● support
  23. 23. What is happening in Estonia?● World Bank rated Estonia as a high income country inspring 2011● Microsoft has increased School Agreement prices14...25 times since 1st July 2011● Microsoft offered 3-year contract with old fixed prices● it is hard to find more money for schools● spring 2013 has started active discussion over it● Microsoft Office will mostly be abandoned● Microsoft Windows will remain in these places untilincompatibility issues cannot be solved
  24. 24. About expenses● if to deploy free software– training about new software– existing data backup/restore if necessary– software installation and configuration– setup domain (OpenLDAP) + filesharing (e.g. NFS)in case of roaming profiles– support service– maintenance service
  25. 25. About expenses● if to remain onto proprietary software– up to 25 times higher licence fees– possible higher security issues (old OEMs but also MicrosoftWindows itself)– support service– maintenance serviceSchools in Estonia are usually using Microsoft SchoolAgreement (MSA), which requires to licence all computersin school regardless of their real usage. Also it requiresbase licence (OEM ~85€ together when buying newcomputer or Get Genuine ~130€ per computer for laterlicensing), because MSA is an upgrade licencing type.
  26. 26. Rough calculations about transition● Estonian capital city Tallinn has 204 educationalinstitutions – schools (~80), kindergartens● ~7000 computers● in one school ~80 computers● in one kindergarten ~5...10 computers● expenses are increasing from ~20 000 € to~360 000 €, it means 18 times roughly(VAT 20% included)
  27. 27. Tallinn: installation calculations● ~80 computer per school and 1 hour percomputer if to clone previously preparedcustomized installation media containing allneeded software and updates already● 35€/hour x 80 computers = 2800 €per school for software installation● 80 schools x 2800€ = 224 000 €for all Tallinn schools (one time expense)● with same price goes other costs if needed –backup/restore, setup domain + filesharing, etc.
  28. 28. Tallinn: teachers training calculations● per school: average 3 groups, 15 people pergroup● 35€/h x 3 hours x 3 groups = 315 € per school● 80 schools x 315€ = 25 200 € for all schools25 200 € roughly one time expense would befor teaching the basics of using GNU/Linuxoperating system, hereinafter: Linux.
  29. 29. Tallinn: IT-specialists trainingcalculations● 3 days, á 8 hours = 40 hours● 15 people in group, ~150 IT-specialists inTallinn schools● 10 groups x 40 hours x 35€/h = 14 000 €14 000 € roughly would be one time expenseto educate IT-specialists to support freesoftware at Tallinn schools.
  30. 30. Transition costs together● 80 schools at Tallinn, Estonia– 224 000 € for installation– 25 200 € for teachers training– 14 000 € for IT-specialists trainingIt makes 263 200 € roughly as one time expense.Additionally comes setup of domain + possiblefilesharing.Also support and maintenance costs. These areexpected to reduce due to more stable and moreresistant against malware.
  31. 31. When to remain to old system...● 7000 computers in Tallinn schools, Estonia● Microsoft School Agreement requires to licence allcomputers at school● MS Windows costs 24 € per year one computer● MS Office costs 32 € per year one computer● 7000 x 24 = 168 000 € for MS Windows per year● 7000 x 32 = 224 000 € for MS Office per year● MS Windows + MS Office together:168 000 + 224 000 = 392 000 € roughly per year● Plus support and maintenance costs.
  32. 32. Other Microsoft licencing schemes● OVS-ES– all 200 hours and more working employees must belicenced, paid per year– must have a base licence - any Windows OEM-licence –bought with new computers or Get Genuine– MS Windows 23 € and MS Office 32 € per PC per year● Open Academic Licence– minimum quantity – 5 licences(MS Windows, MS Office)– base licence also required– MS Windows 76 € and MS Office 78 € one time expense
  33. 33. FOSS tools for PhD students● writing– LibreOffice as an office suite, Mendeley and Zotero supports it -– Lyx – WYSIWYM text processor for LaTeX,● mindmapping– Docear as an academic literature suite for mindmapping, searchpapers, collect them, make annotations etc -– WiseMapping Open Source – mindmapping online (Java), also in yourserver,– Freeplane – mindmapping, – What You See Is What You Mean
  34. 34. FOSS tools for PhD students● collaboration– Zotero – collect and collaborate, citate, -supports also MS Word and LibreOffice Writer -● questionnaire– LimeSurvey – create and manage questionnaires● data analysis– Weft QDA - tool for the analysis of textual data such as interviewtranscripts, fieldnotes and other documents,– GNU PSPP – similar to SPSS – free replacement,– RStudio – integrated statistics program,– Paterva/Maltego – (social, security) information gathering,analysis
  35. 35. Links● List of concept- and mind-mapping software● Comparison of numerical analysis software● List of collaborative software● A successful PhD software recommendations
  36. 36. Concluding videoHow Linux is built? Duration: 3m 12s