[K12OSN] Article in the Honolulu Advertiser

steve at hargadon.com steve at hargadon.com
Tue Sep 21 06:07:17 UTC 2004

Sure sounds like you have done some real good.  

But I am troubled by one thing--you seem to insinuate that the only
legitimate way to install LTSP is to do so as a "volunteer."

The principal at the school that I installed K12LSP for in Hawaii called
you because I sent him an article about you.  After talking to you he sent
me an email saying that you had asked him if I had "charged" him for
installing LTSP.  I've got to say that deflated my balloon a little.  A
concerted effort to promote LTSP to the school community will take
investment, and will require revenue.  Hopefully we are doing so in a way
that is commensurate with the great, open nature of the project.  

I agree that the best way to help those who will benefit from LTSP will be
to help them help themselves.  But to say that they should not need anyone
else to help them doesn't seem quite fair.  The school I worked with did
not know anything about LTSP until they received a newsletter from my
company, talked to me several times on the telephone, received a personal
visit from me, and then had me help them install it.  I then helped them
make contact with you.    Are those not reasonable services to provide?

I worry that our culture has determined that you are either a
volunteer/non-profit, or you are a greedy capitalist.  I, for one, still
believe that our chosen work in a for-profit company can be seen as a
"vocation."  I think the work you are doing is great--I just don't think
it's fair to believe it's the only way it can or should be done.

Hope you'll consider this the opening of a dialogue.


Original Message:
From: R. Scott Belford scott at hosef.org
Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2004 17:57:10 -1000
To: k12osn at redhat.com
Subject: Re: [K12OSN] Article in the Honolulu Advertiser

Henry Hartley wrote:
> Just thought you might want to see this.  It doesn't mention LTSP but it
> does sound like that's what's being done here.  
> Old computers good as new in Linux labs
> http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/2004/Sep/16/ln/ln21a.html

our site links to a few other articles.  I realize this is 
self-promoting, but, these are good stories for our cause.  Furthermore, 
we do what we do as volunteers, and our "business model," if you will, 
is to teach our recipients not to need anyone but themselves for support.

One such school running a K12LTSP lab, Liholiho Elementary, was just 
recognized nationally for exceeding NCLB standards.  If the proof is in 
the pudding, this is rather tasty.  The article does not mention Linux, 
but it is known what platform was used to teach their computer literacy. 
  Peter Nakashima is a model for receiving and reciprocating the gifts 
of the OSS community.

Regarding the K12LTSP, we mentioned, and we promoted, and we 
demonstrated the K12LTSP.  We went on about the critical role a product 
of Hawaii's schools, Warren Togami, has played in the K12LTSP through 
the creation of Fedora.  Believe me, we tried, but, it just wasn't part 
of the story to them.  A shame, but Linux in schools is good enough, I 

Interestingly, the photographer was an intern from the University of 
Hawaii, and his room mate maintains some Debian package.  He was clued, 
and, when he saw my Debian T-Shirt, knew what was going on.  The 
thin-client model amazed him.  He took shots of the server, the switch, 
and the ragtag clients.  Alas, the editors did not find this as exciting 
as we did.

Kudos go to Eric, Jim, the Open Source Community, and, of course, the 
amazing group of volunteers responsible for this volunteer example of 
your lug-in-action, HOSEF.  For the record, we provide free classes, 
workshops, and replacement clients in an attempt to build self-reliance 
and sustainability in our installations.  Giving the computers away is 
the easiest part.

At the risk of going overboard, let me mention that we are sending 60 
computers running the LTSP to Western Samoa via the Peace Corps, and 
have just started funneling computers from our East-West Center to 
United Self Help.  The Peace Corps is going to set them up in 5 schools 
as thin clients (though we are installing linux on 2 hard drives, per 
computer, for redundancy.)

USH is a group that donates computers to those with a host of mental 
challenges that are manifested by self-isolating.  Using the Linux 
Desktop to go online and participate in USH activities is no big deal, 
and, we have already uncovered two soon-to-be linux geniuses just by 
exposing them to the power of OSS.

Keep on keepin' on, folks


R. Scott Belford
The Hawaii Open Source Education Foundation
PO Box 392
Kailua, HI 96734
808.689.6518 phone/fax
scott at hosef.org

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