[opensource] The Future of Open Source Club & Spring Workshops

Paul Betts bettsp at cse.ohio-state.edu
Fri Mar 30 15:41:00 EDT 2007


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Alexander J. Lingo wrote:
> Computer software is something that most people interact with on a daily
> basis. Students today grew up alongside the personal computer. Very few
> computer users know about open source and the awesome operating systems
> and applications that are readily available to them. We are an
> organization that is too inward-facing. Student organizations are
> supposed to work for students and other interested parties, and I
> believe we are not giving back to the OSU community as much as we could
> and should.

I think this is very true, as a student organization we could definitely
find ways to help out students in general more.

> I think that we should work to advertise, explain, and showcase the open
> source offerings to the students of Ohio State. For the most part, we
> have been preaching to the choir -- those who know what open source is
> and what possibilities it offers.
>
> We've made an outreach before, with the Open Source Workshops of last
> Spring Quarter. We had a moderate attendance at those meetings. This
> quarter, we should work to offer another series of workshops. Last
> quarter we thought that workshops revolving around OpenOffice.org/media
> creation would be a good idea.

This is the part that I think a lot of F/OSS people not just in this
University miss, but as a whole. As a platform, Linux may/may not be
viable for the people who just want to check their Email, that's up to
debate (I think it's 90% there, but that last 10% is the hard part). But
the segment I think that F/OSS isn't marketing to ironically, is
developers.

There are tons of people in our major who waste hours trying to hack out
solutions in Windows to get their stuff done, silly things like "I'm
gonna write a program in C to double-space a text file". Let's try to
get the people in Dreese and Caldwell excited about the open-source
platform. While this guy (http://youtube.com/watch?v=8zEQhhaJsU4) is
full of it on a lot of things, he's right on this one: get more people
writing code for F/OSS and you'll be much better off.

I think the best idea is to push the "Resume sucks? Join a OSS project!"
 People don't realise how much being involved in a project helps your
resume; it's the difference between "Just a student" and "That awesome
student we want to hire".

That being said, I still think the OO.o presentations are a great idea,
advertise all over campus. However, it won't really expand the club much
(but it'll definitely be helping OSU's students, and that's great!)

- --
Paul Betts <bettsp at cse.ohio-state.edu>
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