Three Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) students recently gained recognition for a Humanitarian Free and Open Source (HFOSS) proof-of-concept project, Open Video Chat (OVC). OVC put a functional video chat program written designed for deaf students on to the OLPC XO 1.5 computer. This is the... Read more
When people think "free and open source software," a lot of different programs come to mind. One may think of Mozilla's popular Firefox browser, which is for many the first free software package they've used. The Linux kernel, which powers everything from phones to the world's fastest... Read more
I have been asked to turn "Open for Business" into a monthly column, focusing on applying the open source way to business. Let the reader beware that I am not a millionaire. I don’t own multiple houses or drive a new car, but for the past eight years I have made a living running a business focused... Read more
I presented at POSSCON this week on introducing and using open source software in your school or classroom. Now I’d like to take a few minutes to hit some of the high points and give you a look at how you can bring open source to your school with a minimal of effort. First . . . why? Why would you... Read more
If you could open source one thing, that wasn't software or technology, what would it be? Tell us why.
The third annual Humanitarian FOSS (HFOSS) Symposium took place today, once again convening as a pre-conference activity for the Association for Computing Machinery's (ACM) Special Interest Group in Computer Science Education Conference (SIGCSE). The theme for this year's symposium was the impact... Read more
When you procure proprietary software, you buy a right-to-use license and then a support agreement. But when you buy open source, you already have the right-to-use from the OSI-approved free license, so you should compare the subscription cost with just the cost of a proprietary support agreement.... Read more
Hi! I'm Mel. When I'm not doing Free Software and Open Source stuff, I'm a learning psychology geek. One of the questions I get asked a lot by fellow FOSS hackers is: Mel! Why don't people help me with my project?
One of the fun parts of blogging for PCWorld.com is getting reader response e-mails from all over the world. You never know who is going to read what you write. Sometimes they'll spot the blog post on the PCWorld Web page, or as a link in a tweet or even as a Google search result several months... Read more
Two years ago, I blundered into open source because I wanted my students to build educational games for the One Laptop Per Child community. Much of that history has already been told by opensource.com. I didn't expect this effort to be so sticky--for myself or my students--when we started.