The Hard Drive

Our “product” is a hard drive full of free educational material and software that can legally be copied and distributed for free. By pulling content offline, we help our students and partner organizations avoid paying large download costs and avoid the frustrations associated with streaming video when internet quality is low.

We are building a core set of courses and software, but hope to eventually end up with a recipe that anyone can customize depending on one’s location, the organization’s educational goals, market needs, or anything else.

    Typing

TIPP10 – a fantastic piece of open source software that allows you to use whatever text you want as a lesson. This means that practicing typing can now be a review of recent learning and preview of upcoming learning.

    We currently promote and spread the following learning platforms:

Khan Academy (KA Lite) – the entire high school curriculum.
Marginal Revolution University – courses like “Developmental Economics.”
The Santa Fe Institute’s Complexity Explorer – “Intro to Complexity” is awesome.
Udacity – great interface and teachers for learning programming & entrepreneurship.
Coursera – very high quality teaching and a wide variety of courses.
MIT & Harvard’s edX – we actually haven’t taken courses on this one, but admire their philosophy. Though Jay’s first online course was Harvard Professor Malan’s CS50 back in 2010, which is now on edX. Does that count?

    To simulate being able to search online for information, we’ve downloaded [and would like]:

All of Wikipedia, in English and Swahili, using Wikitaxi.
[CodeCademy – a GREAT way to learn scripting and coding.
Code.org – check out their new video.

    Some of the free and open source software we spread along with text and video tutorials:

Apache OpenOffice – word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, etc.
Google SketchUp – 3D modelling.
Blender – animation.
GIMP – photo editing.
Scratch – learn programming.
Songbird – listen to music.
VLC – adaptable media player.
LAMP/XAMPP – web server & related software.
WordPress – build web sites.
MySQL & SQLite – database construction and management (the M in LAMP/XAMPP).
Ubuntu – an operating system. Ubuntu Touch for mobile phones & tablets has HUGE potential in Africa.

If you want to help us make this hard drive better and expand our offerings of software and tutorials, come hang out in our Software Development and Software/Technology Skills forums. To help us better integrate these with larger learning objectives, visit our Curriculum forum.