So we just took advantage of a great deal and we acquired 8 used Dell computers for only $500. Part of the deal was that we also had to take a ton of other working/non-working office equipment and supplies. These included telephones, fax machines, paper folder, shredder, monitors and more! We'd have to go through and see what works and what doesn't. A $500 donation made it possible for Catalyst to purchase the package deal. But we'd need more donations to cover the costs of repair or other services.
The main reason we got this package deal was because it included the computers. We want to set up some work stations inside the Catalyst Space and make them available for catalysts to use, for community workshops and classes, and we're exploring ways that we can make the computers available for community members. We probably only have space for four of those eight computers.
The computers' hard drives were all wiped which means they don't have any software, including operating systems. So we're planning on having volunteers set up the computers, install the Linux operating system, and also the OpenOffice software. These are all Open Source applications which means they are all free. The philosophy of Open Source is that knowledge belongs to the world and any programmer can add to the internal source code to improve or adapt the software for the public. It's cool because it really does fall in line with Catalyst's approach to community collaboration and sharing resources.
It's still gonna require more resources for us to set up the computers to be fully functional. If you can help or if you can contribute your time or financial resources, we'd definitely appreciate it!
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