jamodio
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:09 am

Tass said:


As for the defensiveness of this forum, I see your point.  I've followed a few posts today where I've seen you be on the receiving end of quite defensive responses.  Unfortunately your sensible comments and open, honest debate is easily mistaken for/confused with the increasing ranting of people expecting an off-the-shelf, in stock, ready-for-market product.


Now we are talking and can have a constructive dialog.

IMHO the Raspi is just an enabling factor and perhaps a source of funding for RPF to be able to execute on their vision.

Among the many issues that are part of the problem with the current educational system I'll just mention two.

1- Text books are outdated, inflexible and costly. By this I don't mean that literature or reference material or specific subject books are not useful, but the current text books used at elementary and middle schools (at least in the US) are static, they don't provide any interactivity and do not help to open the minds of the kids to be able to reason and reach their own conclusions. Also they have to constantly be updated, reprinted and distributed. Apple, among many of the publishers that are already on board, and other similar efforts are targeting this problem from the private sector.

I had the pleasure to be involved and participate in the local TEDx talks, in 2010 one of the speakers we had was Dr. James Bower, he believes that text books should be burned. I invite you to watch his short talk at TEDx.

http://www.tedxsanantonio.com/.....bower-phd/

From the talk you will learn that the US spends $6.8 billions per year in text books, so how many Raspi you can fund with that ?

2- The current educational system hasn't changed as the recipients of that education have changed. Kids are wired in a complete different way, not just psychologically but also neurologically, for them technology, the Internet, iPods, iPads, smart phones, are natural, they are what is called "Digital Natives," but we keep teaching to them the old way and if they don't meet the test or their attention is on other things (multitasking or performing several activities at the same time is natural for them) we start looking for patterns of ADD, ADHD, or any other type of modern disabilities.

It is really time for a change,

Just another quick example, we teach the kids to use a phone and we tell them "dial this number," can you tell me (or them) where the heck is the "dial" ?

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johnbeetem
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:41 am

Golem said:


error404 said:


Don't know about the rest, but BeagleBone is in stock at all the major distributors I normally use. Digi-Key has like 1500 of them.


Thanks! You`re right, it’s my mistake. It`s available depending on the distributor. $89 USD is a pretty good deal and I am considering buying one.
Unfortunately, DigiKey doesn't have any DVI-D or LCD capes in stock -- you need one or the other to use a BeagleBone as a stand-alone GNU/Linux computer.  The LCD is pretty neat -- you can use it to make an open-source 7" tablet.  Special Computing is working on an FPGA cape which looks quite interesting.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 4:47 am

Vindicator said:


I do not see a break for the foundation in the near future until the devices are physically available for purchase.

Literally hundreds of thousands of Raspi's are required to fill current demand and as yet the first 10k have not yet shipped.(that could be as much as 1 million plus at this time if there was not a one per customer limit)



I agree with both of these points, Vindicator.

The "break" for the Foundation will arrive when the Raspberry Pi is in stock at RS and Farnell, and the one-per-person limits are gone.  When that time comes, I expect universal happiness and joy, huge kudos to the Foundation, and a veritable deluge of respect once the boards actually start appearing in schools.

Until that time though,  it's quite naive to expect anything but widespread uncertainty, some disappointment, and also the occasional gnashing of teeth.  There are good reasons for all three.

One has to take the rough with the smooth.  To happily accept the kudos for the successes of a project but reject criticism for those things that failed is not the mark of a reasonable person.

And that's why this thread is pretty pointless.  The Foundation will earn the wonderful fruits of what they've sown, and they will be huge.  Not just yet though.  There are a few problems to overcome first.

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nick.mccloud
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 7:42 am

Tass said:


Lets recap. Original Foundation plan:


Make 10,000 boards (paid for in person)
Sell 10,000 boards to developer-type people


You forgot to add at this point

Have several thousand enthusiastic volunteers test software & distros, create tutorials & support materials, setup local user groups and so forth, ensuring the longevity of the project.

Then hand it over to the distributors to pickup the manufacturing.


Make no mistake - selling 200,000+ boards to the general public was not and still is not to goal here, and we are being invited along for the ride.  We should not forget our place...


Know our place? Weren't we invited to buy in to the dream? I'm not sure characterising us in a subservient role is appropriate - I don't see the Foundation having the resources to cope with support issues alone when then first batch goes out. This 'ride' should be a partnership.

I have schematics & PCB layouts languishing on my hard disk - I will become increasingly hard pressed to be ready for September and I'd like to be there at the start.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:29 am

1. It's the foundation's right to run things how they want.

Would you be happy for your potential customers to tell you how to run your business

2. The first boards, I think, were intended for developers to help out with the school launch.

But public interest has overwhelmed this project, so I'm not sure how the plan is going for Sept.

3. This project is for the benefit of school children, not small businesses to make a quick buck on the back of the foundations hard work.

Stop being so selfish and thinking only of yourselves people!

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 8:50 am

spurious said:


1. It's the foundation's right to run things how they want.

Would you be happy for your potential customers to tell you how to run your business


They do it all the time in both businesses I run - goes with the territory - as I said above, I'm not sure the Foundation can meet its objectives if it doesn't tap in to a willing pool of volunteers.


2. The first boards, I think, were intended for developers to help out with the school launch.

But public interest has overwhelmed this project, so I'm not sure how the plan is going for Sept.


That's rather exactly the point isn't it - there is no visibility on this at all.


3. This project is for the benefit of school children, not small businesses to make a quick buck on the back of the foundations hard work.


There are a number of variations of 'go away' I'd like to use here. You have no idea what it is that people have planned or are offering and your presumptions that some of us are looking to make a quick buck is quite offensive, the Foundation is not the only bunch of volunteers in this project. That said, if a small business releases a compelling add-on that people want to buy and makes a reasonable living doing so, what's wrong with that? At some point the Foundation will be paying salaries. Or should we all do it for free because it's for the 'ickle children?

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:08 am

jamodio said:


From the talk you will learn that the US spends $6.8 billions per year in text books, so how many Raspi you can fund with that ?


But the printing and distribution cost of books is only a small percentage of the total. Surely the learning material has still to be made, be it games, text or whatever. I think it's unrealistic to think that can be done by volunteers in their free time.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:13 am

poing said:


jamodio said:


From the talk you will learn that the US spends $6.8 billions per year in text books, so how many Raspi you can fund with that ?


But the printing and distribution cost of books is only a small percentage of the total. Surely the learning material has still to be made, be it games, text or whatever. I think it's unrealistic to think that can be done by volunteers in their free time.


There is a lot of work going on on the educational side (I'm doing some for example) . It's rather overshadowed by the problems with manufacture, but it is there. However, a lot isn't being done by the Foundation, so there is no point expecting updates about it here. The Foundation primary aim at the moment is to get the HW ready and out there.
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:05 am

OK, but that's probably about learning to program with the Pi. Jamodio suggests buying Pies for the total US annual budget on educational text books.

jamodio
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:16 am

poing said:


jamodio said:


From the talk you will learn that the US spends $6.8 billions per year in text books, so how many Raspi you can fund with that ?


But the printing and distribution cost of books is only a small percentage of the total. Surely the learning material has still to be made, be it games, text or whatever. I think it's unrealistic to think that can be done by volunteers in their free time.


Ohhh sure poing, don't have at hand at this moment the distribution of cost in producing the text books, which in that particular case is different from other books, so printing and distribution which is often done yearly is a big chunk.

And you are absolutely right nothing in a given scale, even for non-profits can be done just with volunteers, so RPF sooner or later needs to find sources of funding and people working on the foundation should be paid for their work.

jamodio
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:18 am

poing said:


OK, but that's probably about learning to program with the Pi. Jamodio suggests buying Pies for the total US annual budget on educational text books.


Nope, I'm not suggesting that. It was just an example on how much money is being spent in text books that are barely used and are no longer efficient.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:50 am

jamodio said:

Just another quick example, we teach the kids to use a phone and we tell them "dial this number," can you tell me (or them) where the heck is the "dial" ?

That's not quite my experience - whenever I get a new mobile (cell) phone, I have to get my Kids to show me how to use it!

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 10:58 am

jamodio said:


poing said:


OK, but that's probably about learning to program with the Pi. Jamodio suggests buying Pies for the total US annual budget on educational text books.


Nope, I'm not suggesting that. It was just an example on how much money is being spent in text books that are barely used and are no longer efficient.



Besides, the Pi isn't an appropriate replacement for all text books. Although it has a niche role in (as it is designed to do) encouraging greater involvement in Computer Science and related subjects, why would you use it for teaching, say French? (okay, so as a general purpose computer, you COULD run appropriate software on a 'Pi)

Dare I suggest that giving each child access to an iPad, Kindle or somesuch - fully portable and a completeb package - and the appropriate applications/texts would be more appropriate to the majority of students/subjects. By all means give them a 'Pi as well, of course!

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:15 am

Now there's a cracking combo - a Pi and a Kindle - one of the hardest things with learning to do anything on a computer is if the tutorial is on the same computer - unless you have two monitors. So a Pi for coding and a Kindle for the instructions - a very productive combo.

jamodio
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:17 am

Lynbarn said:


jamodio said:


Just another quick example, we teach the kids to use a phone and we tell them "dial this number," can you tell me (or them) where the heck is the "dial" ?


That's not quite my experience - whenever I get a new mobile (cell) phone, I have to get my Kids to show me how to use it!


I was referring that we carry a lot of baggage from the technology we grew up, and our kids are a different generation that is wired in a different way, so terms like "dial" are outdated ... it is an analogy.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:29 am

jamodio said:


Lynbarn said:


jamodio said:


Just another quick example, we teach the kids to use a phone and we tell them "dial this number," can you tell me (or them) where the heck is the "dial" ?


That's not quite my experience - whenever I get a new mobile (cell) phone, I have to get my Kids to show me how to use it!


I was referring that we carry a lot of baggage from the technology we grew up, and our kids are a different generation that is wired in a different way, so terms like "dial" are outdated ... it is an analogy.


Agreed, hence the We (well, in my case, I'm 53) are a lot closer in terms of experiences and technology to our parents than to our children, which is inevitable as the pace of technology increases incrementally. When I was a youngster, there were still places in the UK where you couldn't "dial" at all - had to go through to the local operator!

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:33 am

nmcc said:

if a small business releases a compelling add-on that people want to buy and makes a reasonable living doing so, what's wrong with that?
Especially as the Foundation have embraced commercialisation of the R-Pi and making it the core of commercial ventures.

There's an ongoing disconnect between who the R-Pi is aimed at, 'the original 10K were meant for developers' and launching for sale to all-comers. The only ones definitely going to developers are the 500 pre-allocated to Nokia for Qt development and any the Foundation set aside for core development partners.

For better or worse, the Foundation decided no one had any more entitlement to an R-Pi than any other ( except those above ), so everyone is in the same boat regardless of what purpose they want their R-Pi for. It's no good launching for sale to everyone and then saying 'this R-Pi batch was not intended for you', 'you do not fit the Foundation's aims'; those people have as much right to be frustrated or moan as anyone else does. Suggesting otherwise just causes more confusion and frustration at what the situation is.

Most I think are frustrated in their 'not knowing'. People may not be any happier, but most will put up with anything providing they can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I believe it's feeling surrounded by darkness which is causing discontent and that should be fairly easy to resolve. Knowing what the roadmap is, when R-Pi will be readily available, will alleviate a lot of that discontent.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:35 am

Lynbarn said:


Besides, the Pi isn't an appropriate replacement for all text books. Although it has a niche role in (as it is designed to do) encouraging greater involvement in Computer Science and related subjects, why would you use it for teaching, say French? (okay, so as a general purpose computer, you COULD run appropriate software on a 'Pi)


You are right, the Pi is not a replacement for text books, as I said before I see it as an "enabling factor" to drive part of the change. I believe it was Pete Lomas that on one interview he said something like the idea behind all this is to turn on the kids the spark of curiosity, innovation and entrepreneurship.


Dare I suggest that giving each child access to an iPad, Kindle or somesuch - fully portable and a completeb package - and the appropriate applications/texts would be more appropriate to the majority of students/subjects. By all means give them a 'Pi as well, of course!


You bet, there are some pilot programs doing that already, and despite the high cost of devices like an iPad, some schools are working on it in conjunction with some major publishing companies (they see where the part of the revenue will come in the future.)

For the work I do, while I still have many printed books and keep buying some of them, I carry many of them on a Kindle, together with datasheets, reference manuals and books, papers, application notes, etc. I've even a selection of schematics of various development boards in pdf format on it.

This is just a portion of what I carry on my Kindle, includes a large collection of books from O'Reilly:

http://www.shelfari.com/jamodio/shelf

My son (~14) loves reading, and for X-mas he got a Kindle touch, we can borrow books for the Kindle from the local library and as you probably know you can get tons of free books, literature classics, history, and even some text books.

So yes the 'Pi is not *the* device to replace text books, but it could certainly be one of the pieces of the puzzle for transforming education.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:49 am

hippy said:


nmcc said:


if a small business releases a compelling add-on that people want to buy and makes a reasonable living doing so, what's wrong with that?


Especially as the Foundation have embraced commercialisation of the R-Pi and making it the core of commercial ventures.

There's an ongoing disconnect between who the R-Pi is aimed at, 'the original 10K were meant for developers' and launching for sale to all-comers. The only ones definitely going to developers are the 500 pre-allocated to Nokia for Qt development and any the Foundation set aside for core development partners.

For better or worse, the Foundation decided no one had any more entitlement to an R-Pi than any other ( except those above ), so everyone is in the same boat regardless of what purpose they want their R-Pi for. It's no good launching for sale to everyone and then saying 'this R-Pi batch was not intended for you', 'you do not fit the Foundation's aims'; those people have as much right to be frustrated or moan as anyone else does. Suggesting otherwise just causes more confusion and frustration at what the situation is.

Most I think are frustrated in their 'not knowing'. People may not be any happier, but most will put up with anything providing they can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I believe it's feeling surrounded by darkness which is causing discontent and that should be fairly easy to resolve. Knowing what the roadmap is, when R-Pi will be readily available, will alleviate a lot of that discontent.


The problem of trying to get broads in to the hands of developers (and specifically developers who want to work on educational software) only is pretty insurmountable. So, sell loads to everyone and hope the scatter gun approach works. Keep a few back for specific purposes - QT, Broadcom devs etc.

Please remember the launch was less than one month away. In that time quite a bit of information has been forthcoming already - more than you would receive from any other project. People are just TOO impatient, wanting information NOW NOW NOW. Information that really makes no difference to when they get their device. The foundation really doesn't need to tell anybody anything. But we do, and yet we still get berated for everything. Perhaps we should just stop saying anything? The amount of grief received would be pretty much the same.....from the same core people who are never happy no matter what they are told. Grr.
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 11:52 am

JamesH said:


The amount of grief received would be pretty much the same.....from the same core people who are never happy no matter what they are told. Grr.


I believe it is a problem of attitude not content.

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 12:44 pm

An attitude that has come about trying to deal with constant bombardment from people who think they know better?

Interestingly, this is the first time ever (as I understand it) that a project like this has been undertaken. So there are bound to be unforeseen issues, and mistakes made. People could do worse than think about that. It also why, when people make comment as to what mistakes have been made and what could be done better, I tend to take them with a pinch of salt. Since no-one has tried to do this before, hindsight can be a wonderful thing.
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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:37 pm

JamesH; This is one of the problems that I have. You constantly use the term 'we' in both the home page blog and in the forum, but are you a Foundation member?

If it's a case that all Admins are getting privileged information, then where does the forum stand?

It's this 'in the dark' that we don't like. When many of us first signed up, it was 'Liz', Eben' 'Gert' and 'ukscone' that were able to give definitive answers.

Now we have 'JamesH', 'Michael' and 'Abishur' all answering 'on behalf' of the Foundation.

The foundation have already stated that the wiki is not 'Foundation' work.

We just want a roadmap of who is doing what; who is responsible for what and who can we trust to be giving accurate information on behalf of the Foundation?

Is Admin group a special 'chapter' of insiders that are tied to NDA's and have a brief to keep the 'proles' happy? The sarcastic and condescending replies from several of the Admins is become tiresome (especially on the blog).

(Oh, I've made an attack on a Mod, so I might get banned! I've contravened some Rule that I didn't now existed, so I may get banned! I've made a post that a 'god' doesn't like; I may get banned!)

I've been part of this community for 8 months and have done my utmost to promote the device locally and get 'buy in' from many people, but they are now looking at me as a charlatan. I passed on the RPF 'promises' and I've been made to look a fool.

THANKS GUYS! (and gals)

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:45 pm

JamesH said:

The problem of trying to get broads [sic] in to the hands of developers (and specifically developers who want to work on educational software) only is pretty insurmountable. 
Won't the broads distract the developers and keep them from writing software?

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 1:54 pm

John Beetem said:

Won't the broads distract the developers and keep them from writing software?

I'm living in Pattaya, Thailand and the broads are a constant distraction

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Re: Shouldn't we just give the foundation a break now?

Sun Mar 25, 2012 2:01 pm

jamodio said:

I was referring that we carry a lot of baggage from the technology we grew up, and our kids are a different generation that is wired in a different way, so terms like "dial" are outdated ... it is an analogy.

JMO/YMMV

I've not seen any evidence that modern kids are "wired" in a different way.  They have different toys to play with and are walking around listening to iPods instead of transistor radios and boom boxes, and perhaps they're dafter from watching too much TV, but it's not like they've evolved into a new species.  If they had, there would be no point in Aged P's like us bothering to try to educate them.

I suggest you stop watching Village of the Damned and instead read Isacc Asimov's "Profession".  Best work I know of on education.

JMO/YMMV

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