[HLUG] Software freedom day - how it went

Julian Robbins joolsr1 at googlemail.com
Tue Sep 22 00:28:15 UTC 2009


Software Freedom Day went quite well. We weren't swamped by people, but 
the people who did come to find out what it was about, were genuinely 
interested and we spent quite a while with each person, giving 
information, demos and giving out DVD's. Quite a few were regular 
customer's of Matthew's that he had mentioned about SFD.

We had one chap who had seen our posters who came in and was very keen 
to get a secure pc to just browse the web, check his emails etc. He 
wasn't a techie, just a regular PC user. Pete demonstrated his skipware 
PC with a Windows dual boot with Linux to show how the two can co-exist 
side by side. The chap was very happy to see an alternative to Windows, 
and may well end up buying a Linux netbook pc from Cookeys ! Another 
chap (who was French I believe) wanted to get Linux installed so he 
could try statistical programming with 'R', and SPSS (??). Another lady 
who was an existing customer of the shop, wanted to use a database and 
didn't want to pay £100 odd quid for MS Access. I showed her OpenOffice 
Base, and Scribus, Gimp etc for her graphic work. A number of people 
mentioned how bad a name 'the GIMP' is. Perhaps they should change it!

Using the shop was helpful as it was fairly central, and Matthew made us 
very welcome considering he was also running his business alongside. All 
in all a successful event.

To be honest, it would have been better to get more through the door but 
we would not have been able to help each person as we did on the day. We 
really hardly had any quiet patches with no-one to talk to.

Hopefully next year with more volunteers (in the end it was me, Pete 
Linnell and Matthew who were there) we can attempt a bigger event. Many 
thanks also to Paul Stenning, for his very smart Windows based 
'theopendisc.org' DVD's of Open Source applications for Windows which 
were a great help.



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