Software Freedom Curriculum and OLPC

Simón Ruiz simon.a.ruiz at
Fri Jan 18 18:16:56 GMT 2008

Neal, everyone,

We also participated in the G1G1 program and got two XOs for our
Python class, who've been working on finishing up the Connect activity
for them.

We teach a few computer programming classes here, all in "Free as in
Speech" languages (Python, Java, C). Although we don't have, say, a
unit on what software freedom is and what it means in the grand scheme
of things, I think we get a good sense of it across. A few of our
students have started using Ubuntu personally after being in our
classes, even.

In this day and age, though, it might be worth having a unit to
explore the concept, though issues of Software Freedom might not fit
into most classes curriculum.

Perhaps in English or Art classes, however, a discussion should be had
about copyright law, comparing and contrasting the "All Rights
Reserved" style of copyright that is available on one's creative works
by default, the "Some Rights Reserved" style of copy[right,left]
promoted by Creative Commons licensing, and the "No Rights Reserved"
state we call Public Domain.

A basic understanding of copyright law seems to be becoming more and
more necessary in today's digital society, especially when creating
art—whether it be with a brush, a camera, a pen, or a keyboard and

Just some thoughts...


On Jan 18, 2008 11:27 AM, Neal McBurnett <neal at> wrote:
> I'm writing to a few pretty inactive lists and folks that I hope are
> interested in this topic.  So I hope the cross-posting isn't
> inappropriate.  I've gotten interested in this topic more myself
> recently after participating in the One Laptop per Child "Give One Get
> One" opportunity.
> I wonder if anyone out there in education-land has experience in, or
> is interested in, teaching kids about software freedom?

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