[ubuntu-uk] The problem with Bug #1

Tony Pursell ajp at princeswalk.fsnet.co.uk
Fri May 10 08:22:49 UTC 2013

Hi John

On 10 May 2013 00:09, John Oliver <jp.oliver at ntlworld.com> wrote:

> I suppose it depends what's available on the platform. Looking at schools
> and colleges on the UK the vast majority run Windows XP or 7. That's not
> necessarily because of the technical staff who are often perfectly capable
> of using and managing a GNU/Linux system or set of systems, not is it
> saying that Windows, Mac or Linux (etc) has one better than the other. I've
> been using Ubuntu and other distros for about 3 & 1/2 years now, but I also
> realise that Windows 7 as a platform in schools and in the enterprise is
> pretty good at what it does, and I have grown to like Windows 7 a lot since
> its release in 2009. But, seen as schools and colleges have been using
> Windows since the 90s, it is simply easier to keep with it. Let us not
> forget one of the main reasons education likes to stick with Windows - MS
> Office, which is I find much more reliable and user friendly than
> alternatives such as LibreOffice or KOffice. If you're in education trying
> to teach children to word process it simply isn't faesable to try to
> explain the difference between proprietary and open-source software etc and
> then to get them to make a choice. Such a thing would be a massive
> logistical operation too - demonstrations on a projector screen would be
> wrong for everyone who chose the other system, and would have to be done
> again.
> So, basically, the point I am trying to make is that until Ubuntu (or any
> alternative) can offer something that will really persuade school/college
> technical staff to switch, then they won't. Why bother messing on making
> the switch to something if it's just as good and will take a lot of
> valuable time away from busy technical staff? It's simply nonsensical as
> far as I can see, speaking from my own experience.
I haven't time for a long reply, but the problem is one of digital
inclusion.  In the classroom only, it is OK, but many students need to do
work at home and cannot afford Office products (or they pirate them).

> Please feel free to criticise me :)
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