Jean-Paul Huchon, president of the Région Ile de France (the greater Paris local government) has announced yesterday that his administration has started distributing 220 000 USB keys with Free and Open-Source software on it, including Firefox. The recipients are mostly students (173 000 of them) and teachers (40 000).
The goal is to reduce the Digital divide and have students equipped with a lightweight tool to access computer resources and carry with them their personal files. The key, featuring 1GB of storage (including 600MB of free space), offers many top-notch Open-Source and Free pieces of Software, including:
- Firefox Web browser (of course)
- Thunderbird email client
- OpenOffice.org office suite
- VLC Media Player and many others.
A dedicated Website has been put in place: CampUSB, which includes a customizable page based on the (French) NetVibes technology. The content of the USB key has been done by French company Mostick, based on the work done by the Framakey community.
Partial news coverage:
- 01Net: L'Ile-de-France distribue 213 000 clés USB aux étudiants et professeurs
- Europe 1: Des "cartables numériques" pour les lycéens franciliens
- 'L'informaticien'': Des clés USB gratuites avec logiciels libres pour les étudiants franciliens
- 173 000 clés USB avec logiciels libres dont Firefox distribuées aux étudiants franciliens
- Clés USB pour étudiants : premières distributions
- Une clé USB de 1 Go pour tous les étudiants franciliens
- 213 000 clés USB pour libérer les étudiants franciliens