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Remixing Wikis with Rendezvous, Web Services and SchoolTool (16 Mar 2005)
Schools need a system which is simple to use for the teachers as well as the students; one that is secure; which does not require dedicated tech support. And all this without using data servers because the powers-that-be frown on schools setting up servers by themselves. Tom Hoffman and Tim Lauer describe the challenges they have faced in doing this and how they have overcome them with SchoolTool, in their interesting talk at Etech 2005.

Is it really possible to build a school information sharing system under these constraints? Well if you mix Wiki, Ruby and Rendezvous with an equal part of skill, passion and serendipity you can.

Tom Hoffman has seen what schools need and what they can do with the power of open source software behind them. He talks about how a few web based apps could take care of many of the schools' smaller problems but are being prevented from doing so by the data silo that the Student Information System has become.

Tom Hoffman talks about his vision about how he wants to take this to the developing world, where these systems can make a real big difference and how he is providing opportunities for schools and developers to mix in lots of interesting ways.
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  15.47    (Tom Hoffman and Tim Lauer)  

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