Clint Patterson

Web / Software developer, Mecklenburg County Government

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Open Source + Education = A Brighter Future

Didn't know much about this TED stuff. A friend told me to submit a session. I didn't get picked to speak so I blogged about the idea.

If education systems used open source they would save money & students could tap into a global community of innovation.

The blog is here:

  • Mar 11 2012: To bad, it neglects the human factor. It is basically a lamer version of B.F Skinner's insight of the educational system. Khan Academy is a better conception. Then again, Khan Academy also neglects the human factor. Oh well, prosperity is a green rocky road empathizing green, good luck on this project anyway.
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      Mar 12 2012: Not sure what you mean by neglecting the "human" factor? Building relationships, speaking (in person), presenting to classrooms of students, and attending user group meetings, and conferences are a few of the things I mentioned in my blog post. All of those involve human interaction which I would think meets your requirement of the "human" factor. Re-read the post and look for those items.

      I don't think all education should occur from behind a computer. There is great value to being able to interact and communicate with people face to face. I'm just offering a solution to one of the issues faced in the education system in our area. That situation happens to be prevalent in many other communities as well.
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    Mar 11 2012: is open source education relevant to the business world and dose it carry value? most americans cant pass a basic military a.s.v.a.b. test. so i think if open source education can focus on the individuals skills gaps and improve basic skills. I'm all for free education but are teachers and businesses they depend on the foot soldiers that colleges try to keep in college or they out source to rich college graduates. education system in america is fixed also the degrees worth the cost$
    Im not trying to slam your question with negitivety i just want to give you my honest opinion. people in authority need to look at the numbers skilled human capital is what ceos blame poor people don't have the job to pay for the internet bill or computerThe list gets bigger I'm ready to have a real talk about the out dated school system set a date and lets start the conversation now?
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      Mar 12 2012: With over 700,000 web sites running on DotNetNuke I'd say that it's very relevant to the business world. Check out the product tour of DotNetNuke and see if it makes business sense to you. There are web firms all over the world who use DotNetNuke to build all of their web sites & applications.

      I'm not saying this should be the only curriculum in a school... this concept focuses on students in computer programming/web/IT course tracks and subject areas. The theme of the event that motivated me to write this blog entry was centered around offering creative solutions to problems that are faced in our community. I do not claim to have the answer to the larger problems faced in our education systems, but rather was offering this idea up as a an option that could be helpful to our current situation.
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        Mar 12 2012: your right it will help and I'm glad your looking at it in the right way. So what is the point of a education if you cant apply it to anything. G.D.P and school whats the real solution with the world economy? because it will just keep getting worse until the confusion is gone. Thanks for your insight hope to discuss it more thanks for caring.
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    Mar 10 2012: I really have to agree with Clint. Why spend money on things that you can get for nothing? Dealing with Open Source will do two things: 1) save money and 2) instill a sense of community among the students / users. They will see what a community can do if they work together and contribute. My dad started the first high school curriculum in Western New York back in the 60s. He did it with no budget. How? He solicited the banks in the area and convinced them to donate their old hardware. The school got computers, the banks got tax write-offs, the students got an education. I really think Clint is on to something. Great piece, Clint.
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      Mar 12 2012: Thanks for the feedback and comments. I appreciate it! You are correct... students would learn about community and working together. I probably didn't stress that as much as I should have in the post.
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    Mar 9 2012: Nice work, Clint! Your idea is fantastic. I wish it would've been chosen for a talk! :(
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    Mar 9 2012: I've been recently giving this matter a lot of thought. Education itself is a commodity in western society. There are billions of dollars in student loans and it creates a system of modern slavery.
    But why do we have to pay for education? I've friends in different areas of expertise, and by just speaking with them, I become more knowledgeable than the general public.
    I think it's true that making education open source, free and possibly crowd sourced; it would be much faster and cheaper to educate the overwhelming numbers of people on this planet.
    The only challenge I see with this is that the education system needs to have some kind of regulation on how the "courses" are designed. That itself could also be crowd sourced. There goes my two cents
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    Mar 8 2012: I couldn't agree with you more. Right now we have a battle/war for information with closed source and copyright/patent and opensource copyleft (gpl/creative commons) heading up against each other. The closed source side have the upper hand because they can influence goverment policy however communication is a natural act for humans and trying to control how that happens will fail sooner or later.

    My personal vision of what I would like to see is a combination of Sugitra Mitras | | method

    Using Raspberry Pi's (opensource computer) which cost $25 | |

    Using opensource and free operating systems such as Fedora or arch Linux to access free education materials online give the childern a goal and sit back and watch the magic (education) happen.

    Basically the Idea is to remove as many barriers as possible to education all the way to the highest level.