Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

The Role of Free Software in Education

Filed under
OSS

On 19 September, we celebrate Software Freedom Day. At tomorrow's Boston gathering, I will have an opportunity to thank the Free Software Foundation on behalf of Sugar Labs for their support. I will also have a chance to tell the story of Sugar, our efforts to help children learn to learn and learn to love and exercise their freedom. I will also solicit your help.

The usual argument for basic education is economic: the premise is that investment in human resources results in improved productivity.

“Those investigators who have used learning outcomes as their measure of education — literacy, numeracy, science knowledge — have found robust connections between education and economic growth.” – Rationale for Public Investments in Primary Education in Developing Countries, World Bank report [PDF]

Thomas Jefferson had a more fundamental rationale for basic education:

I think by far the most important bill in our whole code is that for the diffusion of knowledge among the people. No other sure foundation can be devised for the preservation of freedom and happiness... The tax which will be paid for this purpose is not more than the thousandth part of what will be paid to kings, priests and nobles who will rise up among us if we leave the people in ignorance. – Thomas Jefferson to George Wythe (1786)

To Jefferson, education “enables every man to judge for himself what will secure or endanger his freedom.” Each of us are the “ultimate guardians of own liberty.”

Almost 200 years later, Jean Piaget said “only education is capable of saving our societies from possible collapse, whether violent, or gradual.” Learning is necessary to preserve freedom. This assertion begs the question: Is freedom necessary to preserve learning?

rest here




More in Tux Machines

Open source licensing: What every technologist should know

If you’re a software developer today, you know how to use open source software, but do you know how and why open source licensing started? A little background will help you understand how and why the licenses work the way they do. Read more

Kali Linux 2017.2 Release

We are happy to announce the release of Kali Linux 2017.2, available now for your downloading pleasure. This release is a roll-up of all updates and fixes since our 2017.1 release in April. In tangible terms, if you were to install Kali from your 2017.1 ISO, after logging in to the desktop and running ‘apt update && apt full-upgrade’, you would be faced with something similiar to this daunting message: Read more Also: Kali Linux 2017.2 Released With New Hacking Tools — Download ISO And Torrent Files Here

Open source-based business lessons from a seasoned CEO

The default now is to build from open and in the open. So that's a positive. The downside is that by open source being the default, we may be getting a little lazy. If you remember back 5-10 years, open sourcing was a big deal, and it forced a level of rigor that may have led, in some cases, to founders and early investors taking better approaches to building their company—for example, shifting towards SaaS wherever possible, in part because of the ability to demonstrate clear value versus their own open source. Read more

Keeping up with advances in open source database administration

The world of open source databases is rapidly evolving. It seems like every day brings a new release of an open source technology that might make a database administrator's life easier, if only he or she knew about it. Fortunately, there are many ways to stay on top of what's going on with open source database technology. One such way is the Percona Live Open Source Database Conference, taking place next week in Dublin, Ireland. We've covered Percona Live before, and invite you to take a look back at some of our previous stories. From IoT to big data to working with the cloud, there's plenty to keep up with. Here are a look at a couple of the sessions you might enjoy, as described by the speakers. Read more