Saturday, July 24, 2010

Open Source Rocks !

I love the fact I can take old laptops that are struggling to run other operating systems and install a lightweight Linux distro and have a good running computer. I recently had two opportunities where I was lucky enough to introduce  people to the world of Linux and FOSS. A friend of mine was wanting a laptop to get on the Internet and Facebook. I had an old Dell that I was able to set up with Xubuntu and get him going, that was all he needed was a web browser, he will probably never use any other programs. The second person had a post on our local Freecycle board, asking for a laptop to be able to do his home work and internet access. I was  able to give him a laptop, that could meet all of his needs. I like that since I am giving him a computer running open source I do not have to worry about licenses being transferable or illegal by giving away the software. Which the Freecycle community frowns on breaking license agreements.   FOSS allowed me to share software with him, now he is able to do his homework when he needs to and can check the school website when needed. No waiting at the local library for a turn or having to quit early because the library closes. The FOSS community has opened my eyes to so much, the tools to do the work are freely available. The information is available at forums man pages etc. It reminds when I was younger and learning to work on cars the information was out there. There was always someone willing to help you and share info as long as you were willing to get you hands a little dirty, the FOSS community is the same way.