Who We Are, The Story of Learn Ubuntu Org

7 Abount Ubuntu Linux and FOSS

The GNUAbout Linux and the GNU

Our Experience with Ubuntu, Linux and FOSS

As far as the word Ubuntu here is what we know of what the word means...

An anthropologist proposed a game to children of an African tribe. He put
a basket full of fruits under a tree and he told children that the one who reaches it first will win the sweet fruits. When he told them to run, they all took each other by the hand and ran together, then sat down together to share their sweets. When he asked them why they had ran like that,
while one of them could have all the fruits to himself, they said: UBUNTU!
UBUNTU in Hausa culture means: "I am because we are."

Children display Ubuntu Unity One for all All for Won
Children of the Hausa Culture Demonstrate the Circle of Ubuntu
"I am because we are."

Throughout these courses I always like to use the word we instead of I because that makes us all feel like we are working together, in the true spirit of Ubuntu, on a common goal. However in order to qualify myself to offer this I will tell you a bit about myself and how I came to the point of starting this Learning Ubuntu Linux Project. Especially with a system such as Ubuntu Linux, which is only possible through the efforts of thousands of contributors around the world it seems selfish to use the word I instead of we. Occasionally I must speak from the first person, to qualify myself or to offer my personal opinion, so please forgive me for blowing my own horn.

NJlakes net logoMy first introduction to Linux was back in 1996 when I had the foolish notion that I wanted to create my own ISP (Internet Service Provider) business. Back then we ran Linux Slackware and it was all command line only. I had an ISDN input to my system and 6 US Robotic modems to offer dial-up to my handful of customers. The basic hope, was to take in enough money to pay for the ISDN connection which at that time was about 200 per month, if I remember correctly. I was a newbie and fortunately had a mentor, a friend of mine, who helped me to get it all setup. At that time I actually had a full Class C block of version 4 IP addresses.

ubuntu head computer

Since then I have migrated to Ubuntu Linux and the Ubuntu Desktop workstation for my personal use. My lovely wife had an aunt to whom we gave a slightly older laptop on which I had installed Linux, I believe that was actually a Fedora distribution. She knew nothing about Linux, nothing about computers, and nothing about the Internet. This was my inspiration to begin this series on Learning Ubuntu Linux.

SCCC LogoDuring the years 1999 through 2002 I had also been teaching computer technology first for a Local Adult Education Center in Sussex New Jersey, and then for NJIT, and Sussex Community College. However most of these courses were based on Microsoft operating system and applications. That eventually led me to a project of teaching some IT Internet based course for the African Virtual University, still based on Microsoft products. One of the problems I often encountered was that the students could not afford the licensed operating systems and software.

In the meantime Linux was growing and becoming much more user friendly and stable. The Ubuntu project was started to deliver a user friendly distribution of Linux based on the Free Open Source Software FOSS and the GNU license. The introduction of the Gnome Desktop brought about a user friendly system that is as easy to use as a Windows system or even a MacIntosh. The friendliest part of this new Ubuntu distribution of course, is its price, free!

buy windows ???

Illustration 1: Microsoft Windows7 buy it for 199.99
(upgrade only)

Ubuntu is Free

Illustration 2: Ubuntu Desktop buy it for $0.00
(even if you only contribute 10 - 15 dollars it is still a bargain)

Not only is the operating system free but all of the applications are free as well. These include the popular OpenOffice or LibreOffice:

openoffice org logo

Libre Office Logo

msoffice boxed

Open office.org / LibreOffice $0 <-Your choice-> Microsoft Office 329.95    

If you are into graphics and photo production then you have choices also:

FOSS Media Production Tools Adobe boxed software

GIMP Image Manipulation $0.00  <- Your Choice ->  Adobe Photoshop $699

Also shown above left are other media production tools available from the Ubuntu Software Center for free including, Blender, a 3D graphics animation programs and Inkscape a graphics program for working with Scalable Vector Graphics. There are many programs available to perform media production and we cover a lot of them in our course


vidiots guide course logoThe Vidiots Guide to Multimedia Production with Ubuntu Studio

These are just a few examples but it really is not all just about money. The Linux operating system is modelled after Unix. Coincidentally so is the Macintosh and many parts of the Microsoft Windows operating system. The Linux kernel has undergone what is now a 20 year evolution and it is as stable as any other operating system available today.There are literally thousands of applications for Ubuntu Linux which include media players, Non Linear Video Editing, and some very serious programming development Environments (IDE interactive development environments) available for running in Ubuntu Linux. Many of these run in other flavors of Linux as well. But we have to walk before we run and getting back to my inspiration for this tutorial series, Learning Ubuntu Linux Basics we created that course for someone with entry level capabilities. If you know almost nothing about computers and don't want to spend a fortune on software and operating systems to learn then this is a good place for you to start. The lessons in that course are laid out in order with the intention to give the reader a basic foundation of understanding of computers and the Ubuntu Linux Operating system along with several of the most common applications and features. So you can create an account and take the first introductory course as our guest to see if this great and free operating system may work for you.

Richard Stallman  Founder of GNU

For more information about the GNU and the Free Software Foundation you can follow this link:

http://www.gnu.org/