Sunday, July 29, 2007

Back To School Shopping for Computers

It's that time of year again and this summer I'm recommending that parents, teachers, and schools give the Linux Ubuntu operating systems serious consideration.

For the past six months or so I have been eating my own dog food so to speak and I am so pleased and impressed with Ubuntu that I believe it makes the most sense as a student operating system for a number of reasons. I know from using it myself that Ubuntu is the real deal - a desktop Linux as good and better than the competition.

Dell now sells Ubuntu machines preinstalled. Walmart offers Linspire another fine distribution and other vendors are following suit.

Second, Open Office is both free and just as powerful and easily learned as any other Office suite on the market. Schools use the argument that commercial packages only cost the school $40 per seat but what they forget is that these packages cost parents $100s of dollars at home. This cost affects teachers as well. For families under finacial constraints this is a back-breaking expense.

I have found Ubuntu's Desktop better than commercial products and the number of free applications is astounding. Kids can freely experiment in art, science, math, and just about anything one can imagine without regard to cost.

And wise parents will invest in a $400 range laptop for high school students. The portability is well worth the money and the quality of these machines is more than adequate IMO.

And don't forget an inexpensive copy of "The Ubuntu Book" - an indispensible manual telling users how it all works.

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