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Re: Doubts and question about the merging of LinEx in Debian Edu

On Wednesday 16 January 2008, José L. Redrejo Rodríguez wrote:
> And the final problem is the desktop: Our students and teachers have
> been trained and using GNOME for the last 5 years, so we can not discuss
> if GNOME is better or worse than KDE: It just something that can not be
> changed and both desktops have to live together. 

The above is quite understandable from a technical support standpoint, but 
from a pedagogical perspective regarding computer-literacy this is IMHO 
just plain wrong and counterproductive:

Both KDE, and Gnome (and any other current desktop) is makes up a WIMP 
interface. Given similar configuration (regarding menu structure and the 
like) a computer literate end-user should have no real dificulty switching 
between one and the other for everyday use.

Yet practically speaking a lot of people currently do have problems. Mostly 
because they only have experience with one desktop and thus have no 
experiental basis to differentiatie between the semantically important 
interface elements and the purely visual or spatial differences.

By giving children (and teachers :) experience with multiple desktops 
they'll quite naturally start to extrapolate which are the important 
elements and patterns Thus yielding a more computer-literate person.

> Happily, freedesktop.org initiative has made thing easier in this field,
> but there still some configurations very kde-related in a Debian Edu
> installation.

Ideally we would make it easy for a school to give their students experience 
with multiple desktops (and themes and widget styles) by providing similar 
setups for multiple desktops.

The hard part about that is deciding on how a desktop should be set up in 
the first place. 
Once you have a clear idea of "we want it this way, because of this reason" 
implementing that vision in a particular desktop is a relatively minor 

The amount of desktop customization that debian-edu-config does is minimal 
ATM, while my impression is that Linex has a put a fair amount of work in 
=> I think documenting the linex vision, and consequently implementing it 
for both KDE and Gnome (and maybe XFCE) is the way to go. That'll give us 
one starting point from which to refine things.

> After seing things like:

First doing an svn export before grepping, and excluding README, changelog, 
and translations cuts the below numbers seriously, though that still yields 
a substantial amount of work:

> ../src/debian-edu-install#  grep -r skole * |wc -l
> 282

grep -r --exclude=README* --exclude=changelog --exclude-dir=debian/po skole 
* | wc -l 


> ../src/debian-edu-install# grep -r "10\.0\." * |wc -l
> 3


> ../src/debian-edu-install# grep -r "tjener" * |wc -l
> 67


> ../debian-edu-config# grep -r "10\.0\." * |wc -l
> 100


> ../src/debian-edu-config# grep -r "tjener" * |wc -l
> 298


> ../src/debian-edu-config# grep -r skole * |wc -l
> 628


> Option c) seems the more elegant and flexible solution, from a technical
> point of view and thinking of people around the world who will have
> different names for the computers and different network ranges, but it's
> also the hardest one. If this option is chosen a lot of work need to be
> done.

I think c) is definately the way to go
Cheers, cobaco (aka Bart Cornelis)

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