David Cantrell and I gave a presentation about the Fedora Project and the new Fedora 9 release at the University of Hawaii. We gave out a number of 2GB USB sticks to promote Fedora 9's LiveUSB with persistence feature, since this is the safest way for people to try Fedora without risking their hard drive. This brings up two thoughts:
1) Intel Macs seem to be prevalent among our target user. 3 people seemed to want to try LiveUSB but they had Intel Macs. Our LiveUSB doesn't support EFI boot. Not sure if this would be possible to support in the future.
2) LiveUSB is a great way for people to try Fedora safely. But perhaps we should do something like Ubuntu's Wubi for an even safer and ultra-convenient way to try Fedora. It would be less fragile than USB, no worry of writing beyond overlay capacity and other possible causes of corruption. It appears that it wouldn't take a lot of work to implement for Fedora? In any case we might need to give it a different name because it clashes with the too prevalent Chinese input method.
After the presentation we ate pizza and I talked with a number of folks. I met a former tech company engineer named Scott currently an educator at Kailua Intermediate. He has coding skills and was very interested in how to get involved in Fedora development. Then I met another educator from Kailua. They together manage ~4 LTSP labs at their school. They mentioned the need to port fl_teachertool to work with LTSP in Fedora 9. Since they both heavily rely on LTSP and have coding skills, this sounds like a promising opportunity to recruit a new developer to Fedora and to work with me on the K12Linux LTSP for Fedora project.
I also had the opportunity to talk at length with R Scott Belford of the Hawaii Open Soure Education Foundation (HOSEF.org). At the time that I left Hawaii I was involved with getting Linux thin clients into only a few schools. I was surprised to hear that HOSEF had Linux thin clients and diskless workstations had since expanded to 40+ labs in both schools and community centers. Understandably they had to do deployments with software beyond just Fedora/K12LTSP because the technology fell so far behind. I learned from Scott that the Norwegian Skolelinux had a number of LTSP and diskless workstation features that LTSP upstream or Ubuntu does not yet have, like local apps support which is very important for multimedia. This is a bit surprising to hear. I have to check into this. He also mentioned that there is something else similar to teachertool that might be suitable.
These were the first educators that I met in-person after the release of Fedora 9 with K12Linux. It is very important for me to get feedback like this. It seems that too many people use things, run into a problem and give up too easily without asking questions on the project list.