Introduction to Open Source Software:

Most software we use is "closed source."  Software happens in two parts.  At first human beings write the code that creates the software.  The code is the "Source" and can be edited and changed by humans.  After the "Source" is written it is compiled into machine language that runs the computer. 

"Closed Source" software means the "Source" code is protected by copyright and can not be changed or altered.  Examples of closed source software are the entire Windows Operating System and Microsoft Office.

In "Open Sourced" software the source code is available to the public for inspection and changing.  The General Public License allows this software to be freely distributed and used.

Open Source software provides a great opportunity for school systems to aquire and adapt many software applications for very little cost.  While in Elementary School we will not edit the source code - there are many free software programs we can provide to our students at school and at home.

To main areas of open sourced software:

Operating Systems:
Debian Linux
Knoppix Linux
Ubuntu Linux
Fedora Core Linux
Suse Linux
SUGAR OS - Part of the One Laptop Per Child project

Software Applications:
Mozilla: Browser and HTML Editor
Open Office: Word Processer, Spreadsheet, Presentation (Power Point), Graphics Editor
PHP: Web based applications
Audacity: Sound Editor
Python: Programming Language
Scratch: 2D Graphic Programming Language
Alice: 3D Graphic Programming Language

Demonstration of Knoppix Linux (Live CD):

1. Operating System runs a computer and provides a place for the applications to run

Software Exercises:
1. Use Mozilla to access "Starfall"
2. Use Mozilla Composer to create simple Web Page
3. Open Spreadsheet and do Checkbook Exercise
4. Open Office Word to create simple document
5. Open Office Presentation
6. Audacity: Make a Sound recording.