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MacBytes
Jul 30, 2005, 01:19 PM
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Category: News and Press Releases
Link: Judge shuts down 63,000 Apple iBooks for Cobb County students (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20050730141932)

Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)
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autrefois
Jul 30, 2005, 02:27 PM
I don't see how this is a bait and switch. Instead of updating stationary computer work stations, they are letting everyone use their own portable laptop computer, which accomplishes the same thing except the students can use the computers at home as well.

Are the old workstations PCs? Is this why people are upset? Would Dell laptops make everyone happy? Or is it that they don't want people who have no computer at home to be able to bring a computer home to do their homework? They're not gifting the iBooks to the teachers and students, are they? They remain the property of the school I would assume. So it just means teachers and students can use their computers everywhere instead of just in the lab.

I honestly don't understand, and the article doesn't explain clearly what the problem is, in my opinion.

swingerofbirch
Jul 30, 2005, 04:20 PM
So the bottomline is: this school is sitting on $70 million.

They decided to spend it buying an iBook for every student.

I agree that the benefits of one to one computing are largely unknown. With computers becoming a commodity item and many families owning at least one, why not use some of the money to buy families without computers a family system? Buying every student an iBook could be redundant.

I have gone to school in both Sweden and the United States. In my opinion, the reason that students did better in Sweden is become they didn't come from drastically different backgrounds. All children came from families that were financially secure. Maybe as a nation we should be working toward that goal instead.

freiheit
Jul 31, 2005, 12:34 AM
All children came from families that were financially secure. Maybe as a nation we should be working toward that goal instead.

Yeah, that'll happen. Land of the rich, home of the cowards hiding behind poor people's children going to war to make them richer.

But back on topic, I also didn't quite see the problem as discussed in the article. If the whole problem revolves around the use of the word "refresh" being taken to mean "the schools cannot buy any new equipment but must instead only add-on to existing -- the next word was obsolete -- computers, then some people seriously need to get lives. I also detected a subtle hint that the problem may in fact be that Apple computers are being used (but I would laugh hysterically at anyone who claims that a Windows PC is "making the best use of available technology").

GodBless
Jul 31, 2005, 01:02 AM
Well, unfortunately it looks like the community is rejecting high quality technological education. Not too good of a choice for the future of the community. They will live with the consequences this will cause them.

broken_keyboard
Jul 31, 2005, 03:51 AM
There must be better things to spend the money on than computers.

They could build a whipping room where kids who talk back to the teachers go to get whipped. And also they could have inspirational talks by famous people.

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 04:15 AM
Are the old workstations PCs? Yes, Dells and a few macs.
Some schools are also getting new emacs or have just received new emacs by the way but of course teachers and students can't take these home.

Is this why people are upset? Yes. I'm a Cobb Taxpayer and I have the right to know what my money is being spent on.

Would Dell laptops make everyone happy? Yes.
Or is it that they don't want people who have no computer at home to be able to bring a computer home to do their homework? Yes.

Some students of Cobb really dont care about learning. When I'm working on computers in classrooms, I see kids surfing the web, listening to music, watching videos,etc.

They're not gifting the iBooks to the teachers and students, are they? Four schools already have iBooks. So, it's just the remaining middle and high schools that won't get them. The four schools got test laptops to take home for the summer. I guess they will just have to keep the test laptops.

They remain the property of the school I would assume. So it just means teachers and students can use their computers everywhere instead of just in the lab.

I honestly don't understand, and the article doesn't explain clearly what the problem is, in my opinion.

P.S. I'm a contractor that does computer consulting for Cobb.
The superintendent could have saved the county 4 million dollars by going with Dells. Also, Apple came in third on the bid. Dell was first.

winmacguy
Jul 31, 2005, 05:42 AM
P.S. I'm a contractor that does computer consulting for Cobb.
The superintendent could have saved the county 4 million dollars by going with Dells. Also, Apple came in third on the bid. Dell was first.

Thanks for explaining that pcdoctor. Your right about the article, is doesn't really explain very much.

Abstract
Jul 31, 2005, 06:08 AM
^^Then it sounds like the superintendent was a Mac boy. :)

I don't mind every teacher getting an iBook, but I do think that the money could be spent better. eMacs would be better. And if these programs are to be started, they should be started in poorer areas where computers may be harder to come by.

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 07:06 AM
If this was to go through, guess how much students would have to pay if she or he lost a laptop? $50.

Go here for more info.

http://www.mdjonline.com/articles/2005/07/27/268/10190090.prt

http://www.mdjonline.com/articles/2005/07/30/268/10190540.prt

http://www.mdjonline.com/articles/2005/07/30/268/10190543.txt

http://www.mdjonline.com/articles/2005/07/31/94/10190600.txt

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 07:12 AM
^^Then it sounds like the superintendent was a Mac boy. :)

I don't mind every teacher getting an iBook, but I do think that the money could be spent better. eMacs would be better. And if these programs are to be started, they should be started in poorer areas where computers may be harder to come by.

The area in Cobb where the students are poorer, they have computers that are really banged up and sometimes depend on what's called Title I money to get new stuff. I have seen desks, monitors, cpu, etc. written on in ink, markers, etc. Not all of the computers in the poorera areas are old but most of them still have Windows 98 machines.
(Meaning, they may get xp desktops to replace these this year or next year hopefully).
There was one school that had about 30+ Dell pcs (very old Dells) and I think the students got upset because they had slow computers.
The students pulled the cd rom drive doors off, stuck erases and pencils in the floppy disk drives, stuck gum in the cd rom drive doors, etc.
I got to the point that I got tired of seeing wallpapers of buffy, sneakers, cars, etc. that students had installed becuase of IE's weakness.
(right click as save as wallpaper by using Internet Explorer).

Check this out.
If the Apple deal goes through. The elementary schools will get the middle and high schools old Dell equipment. I dont know if this means their old Dell equipment, recently new Dell equipment or both. So basically, the elementary schools will get the hand me downs.

GodBless
Jul 31, 2005, 09:21 AM
If this was to go through, guess how much students would have to pay if she or he lost a laptop? $50.Wow, so you mean someone could just say that they lost their laptop and pay $50 and be able to keep it. Unfortunately people are prone to do these types of wrongful things. Because of that it doesn't sound like too good of a system to me. If this was one of the reasons that the deal was shutdown it is starting to make a lot of sense why it was shutdown.

SPUY767
Jul 31, 2005, 09:27 AM
P.S. I'm a contractor that does computer consulting for Cobb.
The superintendent could have saved the county 4 million dollars by going with Dells. Also, Apple came in third on the bid. Dell was first.


With how much wasted on Software based downtime? I'm sorry chief, but If I know anything, it's that I can't even keep a desktop running in my office, and those don't even get taken home. Can you imagine what kinds of ***** would get installed on a windows machine that the kids could take home? YOu need to earn, like a lot of businesses that the initial purchase price of something isn't the cost. An indisputable fact is that apples have a longer effective service life than PCs, aren't suceptable to the malware problems that traditional PC's are, and are generally a great deal cheaper over the long run. Oh, and for the record, Georgian to Georgian, Roy Barnes is a bloated slimebag. A truly worthless individual.

runninmac
Jul 31, 2005, 11:12 AM
So the bottomline is: this school is sitting on $70 million.

They decided to spend it buying an iBook for every student.



Wow if my school had an extra 70mil we could actually heat it in the winter! Kids have to wear there winter coats around school becuase its so cold somedays. :eek:

CubaTBird
Jul 31, 2005, 11:58 AM
this whole situation is like.. hilarious... lol.. i mean, heck, my high school.. we had 4 year old dell laptops that have been used my freshman year, (just graduated) and we had enough for every student in the school.. PLUS we had dell desktops in our library to add to that... though we could not take the laptops home.. but still.. they worked.. sometimes.. if anything by junior year the freakin' batteries were breaking down on us

plinden
Jul 31, 2005, 12:09 PM
P.S. I'm a contractor that does computer consulting for Cobb.
The superintendent could have saved the county 4 million dollars by going with Dells. Also, Apple came in third on the bid. Dell was first.

Hmm, I thought there were enough examples of lowest bid winning causing long term problems that people would no longer accept this. My brother works for a civil service agency in the UK and their lowest bid computer system - Siemens-Fujitsu I believe - has an uptime of less than 50%.

Whatever the advantages are, if any, of a laptop for every student, as a parent I think not being able to play GTA, or get viruses or spyware, is a big advantage to using Macs.

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 12:14 PM
The vote for this will have to be redone.
This time it will have to be spelled out what this tax vote is for.
Instead of saying 1% or 2% will go towards education, it should say 1% or 2% tax increase will go towards the power to learn initiative.

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 12:17 PM
If this decision is passed, the elementary school kids will get the middle and high school hand me down Dells.
So, kids kindergarten through 5th grade will use Dells then all of a sudden 6th-12th they will get macs.
To level the playing field and make everyone happy, maybe the classrooms and labs should have equal dual platforms or let the middle and high school students decide what kind of laptop they want. (Dell or Apple)
I wonder what percentage of the middle and high school students would choose an iBook? Also, I wonder what percentage of the middle and high school teachers would choose an iBook?

sonyrules
Jul 31, 2005, 12:19 PM
With how much wasted on Software based downtime? I'm sorry chief, but If I know anything, it's that I can't even keep a desktop running in my office, and those don't even get taken home. Can you imagine what kinds of ***** would get installed on a windows machine that the kids could take home? YOu need to earn, like a lot of businesses that the initial purchase price of something isn't the cost. An indisputable fact is that apples have a longer effective service life than PCs, aren't suceptable to the malware problems that traditional PC's are, and are generally a great deal cheaper over the long run. Oh, and for the record, Georgian to Georgian, Roy Barnes is a bloated slimebag. A truly worthless individual.

I have to agree with you, beside, even if they did lock down the computer, what would stop them from optaining a windows disk, formatting the drive and starting over.... Dells are cheaper, but they will cost the most problems than anything aple will give them. so you spend a little money. Just remember, You get what you pay for. Cheap computer = bigger problems.

CubaTBird
Jul 31, 2005, 12:22 PM
and i think in the end, the students could really careless... seriously... i know i would...

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 12:27 PM
As far as the formatting issue, the students wont be able to login to the school's server if they do this. I wondered the same thing. I wonder if the school system can force a student to use their laptop for school work only?
Meaning, if they erase the laptop and don't use it for school work, will they get into trouble?
Also, every parent has to pay a fee to get these laptops for students.
From what I understand, some parents can't afford the $50 insurance fee.
I guess these students will have to use a textbook.

SPUY767
Jul 31, 2005, 01:28 PM
As far as the formatting issue, the students wont be able to login to the school's server if they do this. I wondered the same thing. I wonder if the school system can force a student to use their laptop for school work only?
Meaning, if they erase the laptop and don't use it for school work, will they get into trouble?
Also, every parent has to pay a fee to get these laptops for students.
From what I understand, some parents can't afford the $50 insurance fee.
I guess these students will have to use a textbook.

Not true at all. I've used a completely unsupported install of windows, along with account information to connect to my Hotel's LAN. All anyone would need to know was Gateway, Subnet, And DNS to connect, and perhaps a proxy for internet access. I seriously doubt, granted, this is Georgia, and they might, but I seriously doubt that they are using any kind of static IP addressing. Hell, if the school's using DHCP, which is practically a foregone conclusion, any windows install would come pre-configured to connect to the network, all any student would need was a name and a password. Any half-adept child over the age of 13 is going to know how to do most of this stuff. I's as simple as copying down on a piece of paper and writing somewhere else.

Lacero
Jul 31, 2005, 01:32 PM
I think buying laptops for students is the biggest education mistake one can make. Most kids with laptops will use it to store their music, pokemon videos and for IM. I hardly think they'll use it for study purposes. It's only when a student HAS to buy a computer for themselves do they use it for more productive purposes.

cberic3@comcast
Jul 31, 2005, 02:26 PM
The only one who will benefit from this deal is the local mob. Forget about stolen lunch money and bookbags. Now we have CHILDREN toting brand new laptops around. They are walking goldmines now for would-be theives. Laptops for faculty and desktops for classrooms is a much better proposition.

And this is totally ignoring the FACT of what most students do to other school property, as already adressed by a gentlemen on the "inside" above.

Yet another unbelievable example of wasted taxpayer money.

-Eric
________________________________
Leaders are guilty of nothing
They're perfectly insane
But if they'd point the finger at themselves
Who would be left to blame

We don't have a choice
Anymore anyway
We don't have a voice
Anymore Anyway

macnulty
Jul 31, 2005, 06:38 PM
The answers no one seems to want:

Computers for every student is a horrible idea. Until students can put together two or more thoughts into an essay or actually comprehend a novel they have no business using a computer other then for typing a book report.

The educational bid system ensures schools will get the cheapest possible solution; not quality, not the best, not the most effecient, but the cheapest. ( I know Apple wasn't cheapest )

I am convinced there is zero innovation in the school system. Teachers and administrators operate in a culture smog.

I have three kids with one going to college.

macnulty
Jul 31, 2005, 06:39 PM
The answers no one seems to want:

Computers for every student is a horrible idea. Until students can put together two or more thoughts into an essay or actually comprehend a novel or have an attention longer then a music video cut they have no business using a computer other then for typing a book report.

The educational bid system ensures schools will get the cheapest possible solution; not quality, not the best, not the most effecient, but the cheapest. ( I know Apple wasn't cheapest )

I am convinced there is zero innovation in the school system. Teachers and administrators operate in a culture smog.

I have three kids with one going to college.

pcdoctor
Jul 31, 2005, 08:16 PM
Not true at all. I've used a completely unsupported install of windows, along with account information to connect to my Hotel's LAN. All anyone would need to know was Gateway, Subnet, And DNS to connect, and perhaps a proxy for internet access. I seriously doubt, granted, this is Georgia, and they might, but I seriously doubt that they are using any kind of static IP addressing. Hell, if the school's using DHCP, which is practically a foregone conclusion, any windows install would come pre-configured to connect to the network, all any student would need was a name and a password. Any half-adept child over the age of 13 is going to know how to do most of this stuff. I's as simple as copying down on a piece of paper and writing somewhere else.

What I meant was this.
If the students don't have a clue what the Novell server name is, context, etc, how will they login into it?
The students are smart but I don't think they are that smart.

tocoolcjs
Jul 31, 2005, 09:33 PM
P.S. I'm a contractor that does computer consulting for Cobb.
The superintendent could have saved the county 4 million dollars by going with Dells. Also, Apple came in third on the bid. Dell was first.
What you don't understand is that the Dell laptops would probably need to be purchased every year given that Dell saves their money by making computers that are very low grade.

walkingmac
Jul 31, 2005, 11:38 PM
OK, seriously. Computers in the hands of every student in school (whether take home or not) is the future, get on board. Trying not to sound like a mac-cheerleader, but in a holistic sense, the mac platform is the way to go. As mentioned before; virus free, malware free (for the most part), great parental controls, easy to secure and protect against install of software what shouldn't be there, Apple remote desktop, Most secure and modern OS, easy to network, plug-n-play virtually everything, and so much more. I can dream up all kinds of scenarios where using a mac in a school atmosphere on a large scale would be incredible and revolutionize how we do school (and my school was pretty progressive in HS). Apple might have been 4 million higher for the initial purchase, but the money you will save in the long run far out weights that.

OK, think about it... teachers can monitor what their students are doing in class with Apple Remote Desktop, send a mass e-mail to the students his/her 4th period Math class with all the assignments for that day's homework (since they have all the student's e-mail addresses in their address book and they can setup groups for their classes). AHHHH... my mind is a whirl of all the great things they can do that would be so easy to implement and create a workflow that would make everything so easy.

The problem... CURRENT IT DIRECTORS IN SCHOOLS ...they have M$ so shoved of their collective A$$e$ that (for the most part) like so many things we feel like we are 'being told to do' would have a less then enthusiastic outlook on the situation and almost sabotage the program from within. Hopefully some of them would be a little open minded and allow the great user experience, solid OS, and great apple product win them over.

I hope they are able to move forward with everything. It seems to be the problem (maybe I saw it a bit too simply) with everything is the language used of a "sales tax proceeds" for the fund rather then the schools funds they have set aside.

JUST SAY NO... to dells
NOTE: I can't think of anyone I know who have bought a dell in the past 12 months who's hard drives have not fried. Just throwing that out there (dell=POS).

concernedjoe
Jul 31, 2005, 11:55 PM
What I meant was this.
If the students don't have a clue what the Novell server name is, context, etc, how will they login into it?
The students are smart but I don't think they are that smart.


pcdoctor, this is where you maybe mistaken. The students are much smarter than you think. I'm a former Cobb grad myself and my friends and I used to really enjoy browsing the Novell server structure. We were amazed to see all the schools were linked in a huge forest, and even more amazed at how uniform the server names were. I'm guessing things haven't changed much in the last few years.

I would like to know how they plan to interface the macs in the Netware environment, but the fact remains, with Windows, the county network is to easy to get in to.

Yes, the macs are more expensive initially, but I, as a former student, and current admin elsewhere, think its a much smarter move than going with Dells.

If you're a contractor there than you already know the county has had years of experience with Dells. Maybe they have learned a lesson. I personally don't know if the laptop program is needed, but if it does happen I would rather the safest platform for the county be used. The school officials can stay on Windows, have the students on Macs.

I grew up with Windows 3.1 on the machines in the beginning, then 95. Now I'm on XP, is what I learned on 3.1 in middle school helping me with XP. I don't think so. It doesn't matter what OS the students use, something much newer will be out by the time they graduate. As for K-5, why is everyone concerned about them not getting a laptop to take home or how old the computers are in their classrooms? Lets get them actually reading, writing, and involved in extra curriculars instead of worrying about what computer they get to take home from school. I would actually perfer that the students not use the computers that early on. They will have plenty of time for that later. Its not like their backpacks aren't large enough already.

Also, why do you think the high school students want Dells so bad? I don't know, maybe it has something to do with the last RPG or FPS. All the wrong reasons.

Why do current county techs want more Dells? It would seem like job security to me.

Do you want students writing papers and working on projects or troubleshooting eventlogs when they get home from school?

Sorry this is my first post, but now, y'all are talkin about my neck of the woods. :) ;)

crap freakboy
Aug 1, 2005, 04:46 AM
Yeah, that'll happen. Land of the rich, home of the cowards hiding behind poor people's children going to war to make them richer.


Well said. Plus I believe you were on topic.
Are computers educational? My 4 year old uses a Mac on a regular basis and through edutainment games/sites has definately improved her skills in all areas. Its just a shame her school uses M$, but her mouse/keyboard skills are well established for her age. In my view its mainly about confidence and the development of that confidence with technology.
Politics strike again....too much middle management on this bloody planet.
:mad:

pcdoctor
Aug 1, 2005, 06:00 AM
pcdoctor, this is where you maybe mistaken. The students are much smarter than you think. I'm a former Cobb grad myself and my friends and I used to really enjoy browsing the Novell server structure. We were amazed to see all the schools were linked in a huge forest, and even more amazed at how uniform the server names were. I'm guessing things haven't changed much in the last few years.

I would like to know how they plan to interface the macs in the Netware environment, but the fact remains, with Windows, the county network is to easy to get in to.

:) ;)

We have to support macs too. Since there are more xp desktops, it's harder for students to browse the network. I assume you are referring to 98 desktops that you guys used to hack into. Macs will have their own servers.

pcdoctor
Aug 1, 2005, 06:03 AM
Oh yeah, students were supposed to keep the laptop while they are in high or middle school. So if you are a ninth grader you get the keep it for four years or if you are a sixth grader you get to keep it for three years. Of course this won't happen if the student leaves Cobb or is in a higher grade. I tell you what, I wish I had a middle or high school kid. I'd probably use the laptop too!

pcdoctor
Aug 1, 2005, 06:19 AM
Also, why do you think the high school students want Dells so bad? I don't know, maybe it has something to do with the last RPG or FPS. All the wrong reasons.

Yes, I would think that the guys would rather play games on a PS2, PSP, the upcoming PS3, Xbox, Xbox2, etc.

Why do current county techs want more Dells? It would seem like job security to me. We support macs too. I actually would love to see OSX for Intel run on a Dell and next just the macintels. I'd go out and but the os the first day it is released. I've always love the mac but hated the cost of their hardware. I'm actually sick and tired of all the spyware/adware that I have to deal with because people don't know how to surf properly. This includes students, staff and faculty.

Do you want students writing papers and working on projects or troubleshooting eventlogs when they get home from school? I just really think they (some) aren't going to be doing any work. I just wanted to know what happens to a kid who doesn't do his or her homework?
Just curious, can give me a hint about what side of the county did you attend school? Was it north, south or east cobb or can you tell me what high school? Just curious!

Krazykrl
Aug 1, 2005, 08:54 AM
In my opinion, it was a GREAT idea to go with Apple. However, a bad idea to give each student a laptop. Students should have access to computers in SCHOOL, but not take them home. Taking them home leaves them in jeopardy of being stolen, damaged, vandalized, or who knows.

Faculty gets laptops, because of course we adults are responsible and all that stuff. :cool:

Kids should have maybe laptops at their desk that are kept in the school and distributed for the day, and returned to 'homeroom' at the end of the day or atleast some good iMacs/eMacs that they have easy access to.

If purchasing Apple laptops are a bad idea, than it would be even worse to see Dell laptops being used instead. PC Gaming is not dead, not everyone can afford a home PC, let alone an Xbox or a PS2. The student WILL use them for games without a doubt.