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Steve, I am trying to organize a group buy for smartboard in early July.
Initially I was trying to do this just regionally but there is no reason why
it could not be opened up to people interested in VT.    I would get
everyones orders, then put it out to bid.   Not quite sure how shipping
would work, but my friend U-Hall could always be a backup.

I am also planning to purchase 60 Intel Classmate PC's from SennicaData (85%
sold on the intel classmate, I am waiting for my demo before I go 100% into
it):
http://www.pcworld.com/article/190575/intel_unveils_new_classmate_pc_laptop_design.html
(which most likely be running Ubuntu).      I am sure Dan ("Dan Tungesvick"
<[log in to unmask]>) would be more then happy to work with Vermonters for
a group buy.

If anyone is interested in a "July Buy" of the above items please send me an
email: [log in to unmask]

For any HP product check with "Marcus Szczecinski" <[log in to unmask]>,
at The Top Floor.  they already base their prices off a Vermont Contract,
most often beating the contracted price.


-bj


On Fri, Jun 4, 2010 at 12:52 PM, Steve Webster <[log in to unmask]>wrote:

>  Hi, All,
>
> The more I think about it, the more I wonder why we don't agree to a
> statewide list of standard equipment that we all would purchase.  The
> benefits seem compelling to me.  (New England-wide would be even better, but
> I don't totally live in fantasy land!)
>
> I'm curious, what do people see as problems with an idea like that listed
> below?  How could we move forward?
>
> Steve
>  ------------------------------
> *From:* Steven Webster
> *Sent:* Wednesday, June 02, 2010 2:36 PM
> *To:* 'School Information Technology Discussion'
> *Subject:* RE: Looking a gift horse in the mouth
> Great discussion...
>
> Some comments from a "push the envelope" technology integrator:
>
> Re: Standardization:
>
>    - I know Vermonters love local control, but ...  As I mentioned a while
>    ago, I think we (all Vermont school districts) should delegate
>    responsibility to a group of our best hardware geeks to identify the
>    standard equipment that we all would purchase and use, in each of several
>    categories, such as:
>       - MultiMedia desktop workstation (PC, Mac, Linux)--high-end for
>       video production, etc.
>       - Standard desktop workstation (PC, Mac, Linux)
>       - Relatively high-end laptop (PC, Mac, Linux)--for video production,
>       etc. where portability is necessary
>       - Standard laptop  (PC, Mac, Linux)
>       - Netbook...
>       - B&W Laser Printer (heavy duty cycle, medium duty cycle, light duty
>       cycle)
>       - Color Printer(s)...
>       - Switches and other network infrastructure components
>       - Servers...
>       - Document cameras...
>       - Digital Cameras (low end; standard use; SLR)...
>       - etc.
>    - Would it be a challenge to reach common agreements?  Yes!
>    - Would it take less total time and effort to reach common agreements
>    (and update them each year) than it does to replicate such decision-making
>    numerous times in all the districts around the state?  I've got to believe
>    so!
>    - Would we have the time to really thoroughly explore different models
>    (e.g., do side-by-side comparisons) if we divided up the responsibility
>    between different work groups?  E.g., one group to make decisions re
>    computers, one group to make decisions re document cameras, one group to
>    make decisions re cameras, etc.  You bet ya!
>    - Would we save $ by being able to do statewide purchases?  Gotta think
>    so!
>    - Would all the tech folks learning about and supporting the same gear
>    result in a massive mutually supportive user group that could help each
>    other with even the most nitty gritty tech problems?  Yup!
>    - Would this likely result in much more robust and stable systems for
>    teachers and students, which is what us educator types really want?
>    Absolutely!
>    - Do we have the guts to risk giving up our local control if it would
>    result in significant benefits to all of us?  I hope so?
>    - How about a strand or session at the next Techie Conference or
>    Vermont Fest to explore how we could establish such an exalted priesthood of
>    techies that we could all trust to make decisions for all of us?  Or is this
>    something that VITA-Learn could take on?
>
>    - If we do something like this, we need to think about how we can still
>    support exploring new, non-standard equipment.  We need to be able to
>    innovate and try new things, but it would be great to have a clear process
>    to explore and evaluate such equipment, rather than let it happen randomly.
>    I'm wary about building too much bureaucracy, but I also recognize the
>    incredible benefits of collaborating rather than have each of us doing our
>    own thing.
>
> Steve
>
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-- 
Bjorn Behrendt
IT Coordinator
Mount St. Joseph
[log in to unmask]
(802) 775-0151