Thursday, February 7, 2008

Wow! Our new SmartBoard and Edubuntu!

Recently I was able to purchase an interactive whiteboard called a "SmartBoard" for our school. I have several more in the budget for next year, but this one gives us an opportunity to learn more about how to use one. I was excited to find out when I ordered it that it would be compatible with Linux, but I had my doubts. Often times manufacturers make claims to be compatible with Linux, but generally with a loss of features or a very difficult installation. I was a little nervous when I stuck in the CD to the drive on my Edubuntu desktop....and I couldn't get the installer to execute. So...I went to the web site and downloaded the installer from there. The installer was a breeze to work with! It's an autopackage that simply asked me a couple yes or no questions...and then VOILA! That was it! Suddenly the SmartBoard software launched and we were in business! The total install time took less than 2 minutes! Guess what else? Everything works! Every feature from the notebook software to the screen captures and more! I'm truly impressed! The folks at Smarttech have really taken a look at the future of Linux and FOSS in Education. Today was simply my first day...all I got a chance to do was put it together, load the software and play around a little. I'm finding myself a bit excited to get to school tomorrow so I can really try things out. Just in the few chances I got to try it out today, I can really see how it will totally change the way I teach! I'm psyched!

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RichWhite said...

some opensource app for your board - &

Cheers !


Ronald said...

Although it's great to see Linux software for this interactive whiteboard there's nothing Open -let alone Free- about this binary package and thats a shame.

This has a number of negative side-effects like:
* no integration with distro-native application management; this certainly means system administration trouble
* no source available; you just have to ''trust'' smarttech that their software won't behave evil
* no way to contribute to the software; I would really like to get dutch translation in the Linux package, but can't
* native platform seems to be windows, with linux versions lagging behind (the windows version 9.x contains dutch translations, the linux version doesn't.

crypt said...

Not everything is so bright about SmartBoard and Linux. Despite the fact SMART tech claims to support Ubuntu 10.04, smart board v280 doesn't work and support states that "The Notebook software version 10.2 and drivers version 10.2 may not be adequate for using the SMART Board interactive whiteboard v280."
So they just wash their hand of it.
Here in more detail:

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