What are your go to pieces of software, the pieces that you use day in and day out?
I think that for most of us and for most of our classrooms, this list would actually be fairly short and fairly “normal.” I also believe that many of the go to pieces of your computing environment aren’t stand alone pieces of software at all any more but are web based.
My own day to day list is probably fairly similar to yours: a word processor, spreadsheets, an image editor, a web browser to get me to my online services (WordPress, wiki software, Google drive, email, Evernote, etc.), and my lesson planning software.
We all have secondary lists as well. For me, this list depends on what I am doing at work and what I am teaching. This list is often just as important as our primary list, but they may rotate by what we are doing or what kinds of projects we are working on. This list for me includes 3D printing software, a Python IDE, Arduino IDE, a video editor, Audacity, etc.
Since I started working with Elementary, I’ve been impressed with the software that I can access and use with no difficulty at all. Elementary uses a software centre that gives you access to hundreds of tools at a no cost that can be installed with a few clicks. While I’ve tried to use open source tools consistently for the past years, I’m surprised how most of the tools that we use are available on almost any platform, easily, at no cost.
Since I’ve installed Elementary, I’ve installed Libre Office, Audacity, Repetier – Host (3D printing control software), GIMP (image editor), Blender, Arduino, Chromium, Python and a few others. Using the web I can access all of my online services and accounts. My point is that most of the software that we need and use on a regular basis is available in Linux. Linux has a reputation of being an operating system that requires strings of long commands and a lot of specialized knowledge to use and install software. While some knowledge of Terminal and command line will go a long ways, the software centre I’ve been using doesn’t require anything outside of clicking the install button.
I still have a few pieces I’m working on. The lesson planning software that I use doesn’t have a Linux version. Besides that, all of my essential software has been easily accessible. A free operating system. Free, easily installable software library filled with hundreds of tools. Another barrier down.