Art Alexion on 24 Nov 2009 08:42:57 -0800

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Re: [PLUG] Netbooks for High school

On Monday 23 November 2009 07:58:02 pm Lee Marzke wrote:
> Does anyone have experience with using Linux and/or Netbooks in the
> local public schools.

My wife is assistant principal in an Abington School District elementary 
school.  She uses an Eee 1000 with the Ubuntu Netbook Remix.  Works fine in an 
otherwise MS 2003 environment.

> I"ve heard that teachers are requiring PowerPoint presentation  and/or
> handing
> out various reports on the school web site that are in microsoft
> proprietary formats.

That's  accurate based on my experience.  Keep in mind that most teachers are 
clueless when it comes to using computers, and that includes being proficient 
and in love with Powerpoint.

> 1.  Do local schools really require Ms programs and how would you get
> around this for
>     clueless teachers ?

OpenOffice works very nicely with MS formats.  In the Options, just change to 
save in MS 97/2000/XP by default.  Also, uncheck the warn when not saving in 
Open Document, as this will cause the user undue consternation.

OOo will not be compatible with Access, but that shouldn't be a problem.

OOo 3.1 is more compatible with more MS formats than any MS product.  
Yesterday, I opened an MS Works word processing document, and an old Quattro 
Pro spreadsheet.  MS Office can open neither.

> 2.  Is the Netbook otherwise a good fit ? I personally can't see lugging
> around a full
> size laptop.

I suppose it depends on whether this high school girl has enormous hands and 

> 3. Any comments on the Asus PC 1005HA,  which is listed as Ubuntu Remix
> compatable
>   LED backlight  10.5 hr battery,  160Gb disk, 95% size keyboard.

I was not able to get either of the atheros network adapters working with the 
default install.  The drivers in the backports work, but without networking, 
you don't have apt access to them.  Download and install from USB with dpkg.

Prior Eees have not had this problem.  I have had absolutely no problems with 
the 1000, 1000h and the 1000HA.  On the other hand, the 1005HA has a much 
nicer keyboard.  This may have been fixed withing the last month since I tried 

Oh, and the eee-applet is for some reason not installed with the Ubuntu NBR 
default.  Install it.  Use it to turn wireless, bluetooth and the camera on 
and off to save battery.  It also provides for two steps of overclocking.


Art Alexion

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