m3lly_b3lly (m3lly_b3lly) wrote,

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Week 12 - TuxPaint & Jason's article

A few weeks ago when I was introduced to the meaning of open source technology, I wasn’t sure the types of programs that are compatible with such technology. After reading about the new art program for children called TuxPaint, I am starting to get convinced that open source technology can benefit children as much, if not more, than the usually types of computers most of us use in our households. What is very fascinating with TuxPaint is that it supports over 45 different languages. This can be beneficial for teachers who have children from diverse backgrounds because all the children will be able to succeed in creating some type of art. From experience with other creative programs, it is difficult to understand what all the buttons mean and how to actually create a nice looking picture. The site that allows you to see how a screen of TuxPaint looks like is definitely easier to use, especially if it is for children from ages 3 and up. Each button has a picture as well as a word to describe the function of the button so that there is no confusion.

The article by Jason Nolan brings up a good point about how many programs offer their service only in English. Sure, there are expansion packs and whatnot that can be downloaded off the internet, but if someone is unable to read the instructions to get these language packs, what use would it be to have it offered? Another valid point that is brought up in the article is how many blogging sites don’t allow you to save your work before you are ready to post it to the public. From personal experience, I have written a nice long entry in one my blogs and when I clicked “submit” there was a page error and all the information that I have written got deleted.

Let’s say that someone assisted you in downloading language packs in order to write and read information in various languages, are the programs only good for people who actually know the language or can someone inquire about what a word might be in a certain language? For example, if I wanted to communicate with a parent in Japanese about a field trip that the class will be going on but I did not know the language, is there a program that allows me to type all the information that I need to tell the parents in English and by the click of a button it will translate into Japanese? I feel that if programs or books, for example, are offered in various different languages it helps people in the community become closer with one another because they all have been given the same information and there are no cultural gaps.
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