Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Education IT

Texas Support for Open Source Technology Education 70

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the but-will-it-catch-on dept.
OpenSourceForAll writes "North Lake College in Irving, TX is offering the first Open Source Technology certificate in the U.S. beginning Spring of 2006. The certificate program was made possible through a grant by the Texas Skills Standards Board. As a TSSB-recognized program, open source will finally get the corporate and industrial exposure it deserves. We believe the program is the only one of its kind in the nation at the community college level. Our goal is to promote Open Source as a business philosophy and as a way of life rather than limiting the program to a few token OSS offerings. Among the courses to be offered: The Philosophy of Open Source, a series of LAMP courses, and a capstone course which will focus on OSS development practices. Courses will be offered both on-line and on-campus."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Texas Support for Open Source Technology Education

Comments Filter:
  • If I were going to North Lake College, I would love to take that course. That sounds like a lot of fun. :P
    • by KingSkippus (799657) * on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:16PM (#13699008) Homepage Journal
      I would love to take that course.

      I agree, I would too. But even better, I'd like to send some people to that course, especially intermediate manager/technical types at my company. They're the ones, unfortunately, who just don't get it and need to be educated about the principles of Open Source and what makes it worthwhile.

      • The idea that someone who doesn't choose something needs to be "educated" about it until they do choose it is suspicious... kind of Orwellian.
        • by mgkimsal2 (200677) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @02:13PM (#13699298) Homepage
          Likewise the person who makes a "decision" without having any knowledge of more than one option - in other words, an uninformed decision - is often doing great harm to the organization they saddle with that decision.
          • I am speaking of people for whom "an uninformed decision" means "something I don't agree with." which is how the parent's comment sounded to me. And how yours sounded as well.

            Too many people define ignorance as "not agreeing with me".
            • No, it's not a matter of agreement, it's a matter of open source alternatives not even being considered. I can't tell you how many times I've had converstaions like this:

              Me: Has anyone considered deploying Firefox?
              Them: No, IE already comes with Windows and that's what all of our internal sites have been developed for.
              Me: So has anyone considered implementing a policy of developing internal sites with cross-browser support so that maybe someday we will have a choice?
              Them: No, that would be too expens

  • Is Visual Basic open yet or just Open Basic or BASIC BASIC?
  • by Cerdic (904049) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:20PM (#13699031)
    In my opinion an associates in this holds much more value than a Microsoft Certified Professional certificate.

    If universities dish out Bachelor of Science/Art degrees in Madonna Studies (the musician), golf course management, and pig enterprise management, one would hope that they'd jump on this.
    • before you knock golf course management, it's a lot more difficult than you might think - every golf course needs a manager, and the revenues of a golf club can swing millions depending on the quality of a manager

      things like livestock management involve large amounts of statistics, and the process of maximizing livestock yields is very similar to that of maximizing semiconductor yields

      if you want a major to pick on, there's always underwater basketweaving :P
  • Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Mr. Underbridge (666784) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:27PM (#13699054)
    Among the courses to be offered: The Philosophy of Open Source, a series of LAMP courses, and a capstone course which will focus on OSS development practices. Courses will be offered both on-line and on-campus."

    A class on the philosphy of open source? A whole semester? Yay indoctrination!

    • A class on the philosphy of open source? A whole semester? Yay indoctrination!


      Perhaps it will be a well-reasoned and balanced class, teaching the good and bad points of the various Open Source / Free Software philosophies and approaches. I don't see why you assume it'll be indoctrination of any particular sort...?
      • Cynicism? Experience? Because, as they say, "Our goal is to promote Open Source as a business philosophy and as a way of life" ?

        Maybe I'm wrong, but that doesn't scream balance.

        • Dunno man, maybe I'm too optimistic, but even though the aim is to promote those things, I'd *hope* that a University of all places would have a more balanced teaching approach. Even when my lecturers expressed preferences about technologies, processes or approaches during my CS degree, they were always at least trying to be fair minded about it...
          • Re:Huh? (Score:3, Insightful)

            Dunno man, maybe I'm too optimistic, but even though the aim is to promote those things, I'd *hope* that a University of all places would have a more balanced teaching approach. Even when my lecturers expressed preferences about technologies, processes or approaches during my CS degree, they were always at least trying to be fair minded about it...

            You were lucky. College is generally a bastion of opinionated blowhards.

            Regardless, you cannot at the same time promote a philosphy (in the advocacy sense) and

          • Re:Huh? (Score:2, Interesting)

            by greginnj (891863)

            Dunno man, maybe I'm too optimistic, but even though the aim is to promote those things, I'd *hope* that a University of all places would have a more balanced teaching approach.

            Geez, man, you're absolutely right. When, oh when, will some brave community college in the USA like "North Lake College in Irving, TX" exhibit a balanced teaching approach by offering a whole-semester course on MS Windows or MS Office?

            We can only dream ...

            http://www.northlakecollege.edu/academics/bit/MSce rt.htm [northlakecollege.edu]

            http: [northlakecollege.edu]
      • by Otter (3800)
        The "indoctrination" issue aside -- that could make for an interesting hour or three of discussion, but would you really want to sit through a semester of it?
    • What do you think they do in elementary schools? They teach us 'this is the ONLY way to do something! WHY? because I SAID so!'

      It's a completely optional course, most likely -- it's not indoctrination if you sign up for the class.
  • by karvind (833059) <karvind@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:27PM (#13699056) Journal
    There was earlier news story: IBM Donates $5 Million to Open Source Education [technewsworld.com].

    That was for Kansas: Butler Community College, Cowley County Community College, Hutchinson Community College and Wichita Area Technical College.

  • The 50-Front War (Score:5, Interesting)

    by c,mma (919672) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:29PM (#13699069)
    Making the study of Open Source software and philosophy available to students as formal curriculum can only help to further establish an already unstoppable momentum. Microsoft must now open yet another front in their battle against open source. From MS's academic "studies" that attack open source as a viable platform for governments and private citizens, to their secret slashdot promoters, to their highly-paid lobbyists in every country, MS must now take the war into the offices of, I hope, what will become thousands of college administrations, and somehow persuade them NOT to offer a view contrary to the official Redmond way. Good luck, MS!
  • LAMP (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    I'm not sure it's a great idea to focus much on LAMP. Most people I know just think of it as a cheap way to setup a website, giving crap about stuff such as the license or philosopy.
  • If the kids know what's good for them, they'll push to make all education open source.

    Especially the answer sheet to tests.

  • by CyricZ (887944) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:52PM (#13699179)
    What sort of "LAMP" are they talking about here? Does the "P" represent Python, PHP, or Perl? Some combination of the three?

    What about FAMP (FreeBSD, Apache, MySQL, Python) or NAPRR (NetBSD, Apache, PostgreSQL, Ruby on Rails), and so on?

    I don't think it's a good program if it doesn't expose the students to the entire open source community. It's good for such business people to be aware of the alternatives to commercial, closed source software. But it's also important for them to realize that the open source community isn't limited to Linux, MySQL and PHP. There are often far better (ie. more secure, less resource-intensive, etc.) pieces of open source software out there. And if their developers suggest the use of such alternatives, it would be beneficial if they had some knowledge of them.

    • What about FAMP (FreeBSD, Apache, MySQL, Python) or NAPRR (NetBSD, Apache, PostgreSQL, Ruby on Rails), and so on?

      Hell, if I really wanted to be an instigator, I would be encouraging a ASP, Windows, IIS Server platorm or AWIS.

      I can see it, when students talk about which courses to take, they'll say "Hey, lets take A WIS."
    • Right now it is PHP but other languages may be added in the future.
  • by CyricZ (887944) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @01:59PM (#13699210)
    Do any educational institutions offer Open Source Professionalism courses? Such a course may be quite beneficial for many open source developers. While many developers are great programmers and designers, they often lack the public relations skills necessary for any serious project. It's not just about the communication skills with users, but also about projecting a solid, professional image.

    More often than not we see instances of open source developers damaging the reputation and image of the projects they're involved with. Take the recent case of Novell's servers being vandalized. And then there was the recent incident of a KOffice developer publically insulting [slashdot.org] a KOffice user. Whatever the circumstances, the end result is that the product and community looks bad because of the lack of professionalism from even just a single individual.

    That is why I suggest that many open source developers take a course on basic professionalism, if one is offered anywhere. Any large scale project requires developers who are polite, intelligent, respectable and well-spoken. The open source community has the capability to succeed beyond our wildest dreams if we as a group are able to master professionalism.

    • "the end result is that the product and community looks bad because of the lack of professionalism from even just a single individual."

      Spot on dude. One person can easily destroy the reputation of a project by acting rudely or especially threatening. When even one person in charge of a project behaves badly it can lead to people avoiding your project due to lack of "professionalism". Its a great way to scare users off from your project who are expecting professional type behavior.

      Please OSS developers, take
      • Who suggested that Microsoft executives show true professionalism? I sure did not. Indeed, it would seem that Microsoft suffers from the same problems that certain open source projects do. At least they manage to keep their developers contained, and do not have them going out and insulting their users/customers in public. Rogue developers are what truly cause damage, far more than some exec threatening industry rivals.

    • No offense buddy, but I read the thread you linked to.

      The KOffice user you refer to wouldn't happen to be...you...would it?
      • Yes, it obviously would be.

        It sickens me a great deal to see such a lack of professionalism. I want the KDE project to succeed. I want the KOffice project to succeed. But, unfortunately, they will not succeed if they have developers going around throwing out insults at longtime users (myself or otherwise).

        Even a two or three hour course would probably be enough to teach such developers proper manners, and how to communicate effectively with customers/users in such a way that the image of the entity they're
        • Shut up you fucking crybaby.

          I read the whole thread, and you desrved to be talked down to.

          I'll let you in on a little secret...

          PEOPLE DON'T HAVE TO BE NICE TO BE PROFESSIONAL.

          God you're a pathetic whiner.
          • You're obviously not any type of a professional, be it a doctor or a software developer, if you believe that. A professional must not by any means insult his or her users, customers or clients. It doesn't matter if that professional is an individual, an open source projects or a corporation.

            Even the cashiers, hamburger flippers and janitors at McDonalds know to not insult their customers in public, especially not directly to those very customers.

            I would expect, at the very least, that open source developers
            • Please don't flame me for using a religious reference, but... before taking the speck out of ifwm's eye, take the log out of your own. Once people learn that, be it MS developers, OSS developers, users of all kinds of software, THEN the relationship between developers and users will start to harmonize. It is not a matter of professionalism. It is a matter of being able to look through someone else's eyes and seeing what they see. I have entered the real world, and believe me when I say that everyone's
            • I basically have to agree with the GP here. Burger-flippers have to be polite to people that don't deserve it, because it's their ass on the line. Ditto all the way up the corporate chain.

              Please, please explain to me why a KOffice developer has any incentive to lick the boots of the un/misinformed (which, to put it as "professionally" as possible, you were clearly a member of in the linked thread). It's not like you pay his salary.

              You can whine and moan all you like that this guy doesn't behave within t
              • The topic at hand was the acceptance of KOffice in the consumer and corporate markets. If they want to be used in the enterprise, then they will need to show a basic degree of formalism.

                Even if your Aunt Sally doesn't demand professionalism when it comes to the developer of her office suite, basically everyone in the corporate world does. If the KOffice team wishes for their product to become more widely used, then they cannot have rogue developers going around insulting users.

                It isn't about me at all. He's
                • If the KOffice team wishes for their product to become more widely used, then they cannot have rogue developers going around insulting users.

                  Actually, I think their idea is to write a kickass office suite and let the software speak for itself. Isn't that the idea here? Richard Stallman isn't very aligned with your concepts of "professionalism", but does that stop corporations from using GCC? Show some perspective, this is about you, and about how some smart-ass dev hurt your feelings.

                  If he is unable to
                  • There are many in the corporate world who will not use open source software because of personalities like RMS and others. That said, at least Stallman is professional in presenting his opinions, even if they differ from the norm. He does not resort to blatant insults while acting as a representative of the GNU project or the FSF.

                    Like I've stated time and time again, I don't care about the insults themselves. What bothers me, as a long-time KDE user, is that this developer is ruining the public image of the
                    • There are many in the corporate world who will not use open source software because of personalities like RMS and others.

                      I don't view this as a problem at all (other than an unfortunate situation for the shareholders). I doubt very much that any organization that would be potentially contributing to or improving GCC for the rest of us would reject it solely on the basis RMS' personality, so what have we lost here exactly? Some profit for a superstitious company? I'm as happy as anyone to hear about OSS s
                    • There's not much more to be said. The KOffice developer who tossed out the insults has made the project look quite bad. And indeed, it's good that we agree on the fact that many open source developers do need to increase their level of professionalism. If software like KOffice is ever to be widely used by business users, then the developers will need to project a professional and trustworthy image.

    • Do any educational institutions offer Open Source Professionalism courses? Such a course may be quite beneficial for many open source developers.

      As with many things, the developers that need these skills the most are usually the ones least likely to want them, let alone feel motivated enough to go on a course to pick them up.

    • "Whatever the circumstances, the end result is that the product and community looks bad because of the lack of professionalism from even just a single individual."

      NO, something that it appears you are far too stupid to understand, the INDIVIDUAL looks bad in cases such as this, not "the product and community".

      You're an idiot, so I wouldn't expect you to understand the subtle nuances.

      Please stopa acting like you getting yelled at has ANY bearing on OSS of KOffice. No one cares about you getting yelled at, a
  • Getting Involved... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by polyp2000 (444682) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @02:07PM (#13699254) Homepage Journal
    I would like to find out more about getting involved in these kind of initiatives , perhaps as a change career direction. I've heard of similar government and local council initiatives in the UK where I live. I've got an excellent background with linux and opensource technologies but want possibly to move away from Web Development and do something where im working with what I love and perhaps branch out and gain some more skills along the way.

    Nick ...
  • I went to North Lake (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Stonent1 (594886) <stonent&stonent,pointclark,net> on Sunday October 02, 2005 @02:18PM (#13699321) Journal
    We had a computer center that was "donated" to us by Microsoft. There were banners hanging all around it saying stuff like "Welcome to the Microsoft Computer Lab" It was about 1999 or so, and all the PCs were Dell GXa and GXi PCs with removable hard drive trays. I was going to be taking MCSE courses for Windows NT 4.0 at the time. I finished Networking Essentials and Windows NT 4.0, but shortly after took a job where one of the requirements was that the person NOT be an MCSE because they were tired of MCSEs. They said they picked me because I didn't have an MCSE and I knew what I was talking about.
  • by hubertf (124995) on Sunday October 02, 2005 @02:19PM (#13699327) Homepage Journal
    There's also a class on Open Source this fall term at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ. Mail me for more information.

      - Hubert
  • ...since when have teachers not stolen their students code and claimed it as their own? I wrote a program to compute points on a sphere in high school and when another teacher walked in, mine claimed it as his. Granted, being a single aging geek and the other teacher being a well stacked single lady might have had something to do with it...
  • It's really bizarre to wake up one morning and see your old community college mentioned on slashdot. Ironic though, that I paid a couple thousand a semester to go there, and then transferred here to NYU, where I am now paying out of my ass, only to have them open up a radical new program of sorts the year after I left. Oh well.
  • by WgT2 (591074)

    I wonder how much the North Texas LUG had to do with this.

  • by DraconPern (521756) <draconpern&hotmail,com> on Sunday October 02, 2005 @09:37PM (#13701183) Homepage
    I got hold of the course syllabus and I am posting it here.

    Chapter 1. RTFM.
    That is all.

  • The pure CS classes there were not very popular for some reason (as opposed to various IT certification programs). Now they have been stripped down to a minimum as the guy formerly in chage of the CS curriculum has taken this on instead. He has a really strong passion for open source - perhaps more than anyone I've ever met and I think this can turn out very well if the administration does not make the mistake of losing him somehow. He has already worked a lot of open source technology into the department

Everyone can be taught to sculpt: Michelangelo would have had to be taught how not to. So it is with the great programmers.

Working...