[Ubuntu-US-PA] Open Options: Remix Computing with Open Source Software

Bryan Behrenshausen behrenshausen at gmail.com
Tue Dec 8 13:31:14 GMT 2009

Hi everyone,

I'm writing with one more update on the progress of the F/OSS event
I've been planning at Millersville University.  I finally have some
specific, concrete details to share with you, and I'm very excited
about them.

Since I "pitched" my idea for this event to library faculty and staff,
it has snowballed in many positive and exciting ways.  What began (in
my mind) as a small assembly/demonstration of a few open source
software solutions has blossomed into a campus-wide roundtable
speaking event as various parties from around the university have
expressed an interest in participating.  Here are the current details
of the event:

On Thursday evening (most likely between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m.), February
18, 2010, the university library will be hosting an open source themed
event -- "Open Options: Remix Computing with Open Source Software" --
that corresponds with the university's current theme, "Remix the
Future, Remake our World."  The purpose of the event is to introduce
students and faculty to both the concept/philosophy of open source in
general, and to expose them to various open source software
applications and platforms that may enhance their lives around the
university.  The event will feature a roundtable discussion by faculty
in numerous academic disciplines (education, political science,
library science, computer science) and departments (education
technologies, information technology).  As an instructor in the
Department of Communication and Theatre, I will be moderating this
discussion, for which participants will be bringing brief, prepared
remarks, then commenting on a few questions I'll have given them

Additionally, the event will feature a curriculum guide that lists
open source themed materials teachers and students can integrate into
their lectures, projects, or presentations, and we will of course be
serving refreshments.  Canonical has graciously donated Ubuntu
(Karmic) CDs, and OpenOffice.Org has generously agreed to supply us
with discs and other promotional materials we can distribute to those
in attendance who might want to try open source software for
themselves after listening to our speakers.

We are currently working on the logistics of one final component of
the evening: Software demonstrations.  Following the roundtable
discussion (which we will most likely limit to an hour or so), we
would love to have some folks informally demonstrate various open
source platforms and applications for attendees (I say "informally"
because we're picturing a scenario in which visitors who just listened
to the roundtable discussion enjoy cookies and punch while meandering
from table to table, interacting with people who demonstrate software
for them).

And this is why I'm posting today's update.  We would be thrilled to
welcome members of Ubuntu's Pennsylvania Loco team who may wish to
volunteer at our event, showing off the Ubuntu operating system, one
or more of its applications, or any of its variants.  We would also
welcome one or two members of the group (I know we have at least one
MU grad out there!) who'd like to sit on our panel of speakers and
discuss one or more issues related to the Ubuntu project with other
panelists and audience members.  If you wish to do this, you may
contact me directly for more details about the roundtable (which will
be quite relaxed, I assure you).

I realize that the timing of this event may make it attending
difficult.  I did stress to our planning committee the ramifications
of hosting the event on a weeknight (when many team members are smack
in the middle of their respective work weeks); however, the library
faculty and staff ultimately chose to host the event during the week
to encourage attendance and increase participation from students,
faculty, and community members alike.  Nevertheless, I do hope you
will consider joining us for an evening of discussion and learning, as
we try to impress upon our students (and faculty!) the benefits of
free and open source software in the academy and the world.

Anyone with questions about the event -- or suggestions for improving
it! -- can certainly feel free contact me directly.  I can also stop
by a Wednesday IRC meeting to discuss the event "live."

See also these previous threads on the matter:



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