How to take care of your readers, via Doug Johnson

I read with great interest Doug Johnson’s post about the new $399 ASUS laptop that runs Linux. It might be the solution we are looking for not just with a 1:1 program, but also a desktop situation that is in need of addressing.

Doug’s blog is well-known; he is, what many consider, to be a leader in the field of educational technology and library science. Here is the comment I left on his post:


Perfect little machine for a staff holiday gift guide. I am interested to see how schools, especially mine, would adapt to using a Linux-based OS, especially when they ask the question: “How do open my PowerPoints?”

Interested to see your comparison between the two when the XO arrives.

This is how Doug responded:

Hi Patrick,

Right now kids who have the latest version of PPT for the PC are having a tough time opening any Office documents on our Macs with the current version of Mac Office. No one seems able to remember to save to the older version. I’ve had more problems with PPT on this Eee than anything else. The fact my PPTs run 80mg and include movies, animation etc., may be part of the problem. Smaller PPTs work fine but I have to adjust font sizes.

I seriously debate whether to buy the newer version of Office for the Mac. I am really liking the Open Office software that comes with the Eee. Seems less feature glut. Kids could have copies on home computeres – Open Offfice or Neo Office. Maybe it i a good time to make the switch?

Thanks for your comments,


If ever you wondered what people mean by taking care of your readers, this is it. His response not only addressed my questions, but also directed me toward new thinking. It was lengthy, well-thought out, and was much more than I expected from someone as noteworthy as Doug. Cheers to you Doug, for leading by example.

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3 thoughts on “How to take care of your readers, via Doug Johnson

  1. Patrick-

    Have you seen that little machine? I saw it Friday at Kean and it is very small. I would not be able to put that in place of desktops at my school. Also, I don’t think that an adult would be comfortable working on it for any amount of time.

    Just my 2 cents.


  2. Sarah,

    I haven’t seen the machine myself, but I would love to get my hands on one for a test drive. Our 5th Grade administrator is looking for them; I think those hands are small enough!

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