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<title>TUX&amp;GNU@school - 4th edition</title>
<h1>TUX&amp;GNU@school - 4th edition</h1>
<p><i>Every month the column <a
[2]</a> reports about free software, a homepage on the topic
and an easy to implement idea. This month I talk about <a
href="">Ghemical [3]</a>,
modelling und computing molecules, about <a
href=""> [4]</a>, the
education portal of SEUL - Simple End-User Linux and about
the idea "word games generated rapidly".</i></p>
<p>Welcome to the 4th edition. As I promised last time, there
are some news today. This is the first edition released under
the roof of the <a href="/">Free
Software Foundation Europe [5]</a> and <a
href="">GNU [6]</a>. In this context
TUX&amp;GNU@school will be released in different languages in
the future but right now only in German and English. At this
point I want to thank Christian Selig and Kristian Rink for
their support with writing and translating. Unfortunately
there is no report about a school using GNU/Linux and/or Free
Software in this edition. I hope that next time I find
somebody and I likewise will upgrade the <a
href="">Questions Page
[7]</a> and translating of course. And again, sorry for the
latenese. The reason is easy: It a lot of work (too much for
a hobby) promoting and installing (!) GNU/Linux at Swiss
schools. But now we're talking about a topic everyone loves:
<h3>Ghemical - Modelling and computing molecules</h3>
<p><a href="">Ghemical
[3]</a> is a free program for chemistry, which is relatively
easy for modelling and computing molecules. I tssted the
version 0.82 under <a href="">Debian
GNU/Linux 3.0 [8]</a> and <a href="">KDE
2.2.2 [9]</a>. You can easy install the program under Debian
with the command <tt>apt-get install ghemical</tt>. Version
0.90 is up to date and if you can trust the homepage, they
want to release the version 1.0 in this summer (that's
becoming scarely) or autumn. The program is (and was)
developed by several people, all listed alphabetically on the
<p>Before I begin with the introduction to Ghemical I want to
mention yet: Unfortunately my last chemistry teacher took my
interest for this subject so I can't interpret all terms
correctly. But who is bothering intensifiedly with this
subject will understand it much better. That's the reason why
I'm not going in the depth of each term and function.</p>
<p>Starting the program a window quite similar to the first
screenshot will appear. That's the main window from where you
appoint what will be the project you work on. Up to now
quantum and molecular mechanic models and reduced protein
models are available whereas the last one isn't completely
implemented yet. When you start Ghemical it is most useful
doing this out of a terminal because it is still necessary to
make some in- and output on the terminal. But this feature
shall disappear with the version 1.0. Working with the
program the menu panel and the popup menu are the most
important aids. The menu panel owns three items: <i>File</i>,
<i>Windows</i> and <i>Help</i>. It's important to mention now
the program isn't really translated to German. There are only
scattered terms, words and descriptions in German. In the
menu item <i>File</i> you can open projects, load already
existing ones and exit the program. At <i>Windows</i> it is
possible to choose between the following three MDI modes:
<i>Notebook</i>, <i>Toplevel</i> and <i>Modal</i>. And
finally in the last item <i>Help</i> you find either general
information about Ghemical or a link to the
<p><img src="./img/ghemical.en.png"
alt="Screenshot 1: Ghemical with aspirin" width="800"
height="600" border="0" /><br />
<h5>Screenshot 1: Ghemical with aspirin</h5>
<br />
<br />
<p>If you decided for a project at the left brink are a lot
of modification possibilities to work with. These differ from
different rotation and translation directions over the
zooming unless the erasing and adding of atoms and bindings
of course. Clicking on the prompt window for the molecules
with the right mouse button a popup menu appears which
contains different items depending on the project. To mention
are for instance the different presentation possibilities.
Proceeding the single atoms can be indexed differently.
Surely it's interesting too that you can plot the molecules
in different ways among others there is a display for 3D
glasses build in. This popup menu contains then too the basic
functions for saving and closing the projects. The choice
between between different elements and bindings is possible
here too. Beneath these simple function there are more
complex ones too. <b>Where the correct adding of hydrogen
atoms every reader still understands menu item as
"ESP-colored vdW-surface" isn't only imcomprehensible for the
author.</b> At this item the interested user and ongoing PhD
will hopefully understand it. Principally there is a huge
number of different engines and algorithms for studying and
changing the molecules. They seem to be quite professional
for me as layman. The possibility of generating DNA molecules
out of an easy "ACGT code" is absolutely noticeable for
<p><img src="./img/ghemical2.en.png"
alt="Screenshot 2: Van der Waals image of acetylsalicyl-acid"
width="800" height="600" border="0" /><br />
<h5>Screenshot 2: Van der Waals image of
<br />
<br />
<p>At the end some tips (mainly from the <a
href="">homepage [3]</a>)
that can help you with the daily usage.</p>
<li>For the generation of a quantum mechanic model
principally it is more meaningful to generate a molecular
mechanic one first which then you can transform in a
quantum mechanic one.</li>
<li>All menu panel are freely relocatable and placeable
outside of the main window too.</li>
<li>There are a lot of import and export formats available
for molecular mechanic models.</li>
<li>If you are forced using Windows at work then you can
find a <a
description [10]</a> about the usage of Ghemical under
And for those who are still wondering at the end of this
short description how you have to pronounce "Ghemical" can
find an answer in the statement of an developer which says
that generally everybody can pronouce it as he or she want
but the "G" comes from "GNU" and/or "GNOME". <br />
<br />
<p>But now continues to the home of Simple End-User
<h3>, the education portal of SEUL - Simple
End-User Linux</h3>
<p><a href="">SEUL/edu [4]</a>
subproject of <a href="">SEUL [11]</a>
stands for "Simpel End-User Linux". The goal of SEUL is
making available an as easy as possible GNU/Linux system for
every user. Thereby qualitatively good software shall arise
which preferably will be released under the terms of the <a
href="">GNU GPL [12]</a>.
To manage and assist this the site is hosting a lot of <a
href="">projects [13]</a>
and makes available mailing lists for the coordination of the
work. Main language in this project and on the website too is
The subproject school and education was founded in 1998. Doug
Loss is the leader at the moment and Karl Peña is managing a
lot of stuff on the <a href="">website
[4]</a>. Beneath these two there are a lot of other
freelancers too. In principle SEUL/edu mainly consists of a
mailing list whose access is already described on the
frontpage and you can subscribe right there too. <br />
<br />
<p><img src="./img/seul-edu.en.png"
alt="Screenshot 3: The homepage of SEUL/edu" width="800"
height="600" border="0" /><br />
<h5>Screenshot 3: The homepage of SEUL/edu</h5>
<br />
<br />
<p>The homepage of the project is devided in seven sections.
They are: <i>Current projects</i>, <i>Existing software</i>,
<i>Case studies</i>, <i>Documentation</i>, <i>Regular
reports</i>, <i>List archive</i> and <i>Links</i>. There is
only one <a href="">project
[14]</a> now under the first item whose goal it is making
available an ISO-Image containing a counterbalanced
collection of education software. But the development stands
still at the beginning and we will see what will happen with
it. However the database with already <a
href="">existing software [15]</a> is
remarkable by all means and I never saw such a big one in the
internet yet. At the moment the database contains 518
software projects arranged by categories believe it or not.
There is a short description for each entry. Additional and
optional information are: version, date, author, homepage,
download URL and the used license of course. Accessorily it
is possible showing only predetermined data as the license or
a the short description. Important for the further growth is
the easy way to enter new software which is accomplished
through a <a
href="">form on
the website [16]</a>. You can search the entries either for a
destined application or a pretermined word. But don't forget
there is not only Free Software in this database. Because the
people of SEUL/edu collected and catalogued already so much
software it would possibly make sense that other projects use
this database too, integrating it in their webpages and
expand it. A translation in other languages would expand the
circle of possible users again.</p>
<p>They who are searching reports about schools using
GNU/Linux and/or Free Software making a find here too.
SEUL/edu offers <a
[17]</a> of more than 50 schools worldwide. There are a few
from Cuenca in Ecuador to Marl in Germany. It is possible to
easy make new entries with a <a
href="">form [18]</a>
on the website. Under <a
href="">documentation [19]</a> you
don't find as much at the moment. There is already a
classification for the documenation in the future which
contains sections as the <i>Users guide</i> or the
<i>Teachers guide</i>. Even a category helping
decision-makers and people who want to persuade schools of
GNU/Linux and/or Free Software is available. But SEUL/edu
lists <a
documentation[20]</a> in the same structure too. At the
moment there is a helping description for people who want to
write documentation for one of the named categories.</p>
<p>The project itself releases an extensive report about the
situation of GNU/Linux and Free Software in and at schools at
least twice a month. The since the beginning of 2000
published reports are of course archived on the site <a
href="">[21]</a> so that
everyone can read them at any time. Because SEUL/edu mainly
works and communicates over the mailing list they made an
archive of the list available <a
href="">online [22]</a>
too. And finally under the last item you can find an
extensive <a
collection [23]</a> to further sites about the theme
"GNU/Linux, Free and Open Software in and at schools".</p>
<p>But now, let's continue with the idea of this month.</p>
<h3>"Word games generated rapidly"</h3>
<p>For the last idea, concedely a little skinny one, I didn't
receive any implementation because of this continues to the
idea of this edition. Because the ideas introduced until now
were always more or less for learning or teaching at the hard
everyday school life I want to present an idea for loosing
today. Riddles, an invention fascinating and entertaining
humankind since billions of years, can prettify school a
little. Even children find pleasure and happiness with
riddles and guessing games. I think about a quite special
kind which seems to be rather simple to implement and program
too. What I mean is a letters huddle containing different,
mostly thematically coherent words. The task is to search and
find these words in the mix-up. Mostly the letters are
disposed in an rectangle in which the to finding words are
placed horizontally, vertically or diagonally. Thereby the
searching words can be written forward or backward.</p>
<p>Perhaps there is already a piece of software generating
such riddles. And if not such a thing would be implementable
in short time, isn't it ? A little bash script putting words
of a definite category into a letters huddle. Writing this
letters sequence with some <a
href="">(La)TeX [24]</a> commands
into a text file and translating it would result in a quite
good-looking riddle for pupils her excercices already
finished. And the best, if you select correlatively the word
collection pupils even learn the correct orthography or
understand the context between the single word families.
Anyway I'm curious about the ideas you will create. Farther
ideas were for instance that words are written correctly and
wrong in the letters mix-up or you make the whole thing with
<p>Once again at this place the calling to send <a
href="">me [1]</a> ideas which you think
are easy to implement or you didn't find comparable software
yet, then I will report about them at this place in one of
the next editions. And perhaps there are firms, schools or
single persons offer a reward for an implementation.</p>
<p>But now continues to a new section.</p>
<h3>News and up to date program versions</h3>
<p>In the future I will report in this section about news of
GNU/Linux and Free Software at school. Beneath I will list
actual program versions of free education software for the
moment only of the programs I already reported about in
TUX&amp;GNU@school. Software whose version changed since the
last edition will be highlighted in red.</p>
<p>On 6th of september Raphael Hertzog announced the birth of
DebianEDU a subproject of <a
href="">Debian [8]</a>. Interim goal of
the project is it making Debian the best available
distribution school purposes. At the moment they impetuously
dicuss on the <a
list [25]</a> how they want to go on the first tasks and what
has priority. You can find more information under <a
<h4>Up to date program versions</h4>
<li><a href="">KTouch</a> 1.0 -
Type writing course under KDE 3.0.3 (<a
<li><a href="">GCompris</a>
1.1.0 - Education plattform with different boards (<a
<li><a href="">KGeo</a> 1.0.2 -
Geometry program under KDE 3.0.3 (<a
0.90 - Chemistry program for modelling and computing
molecules (<a
<br />
<br />
<p>That's it for this month up to the next.</p>
<p>[1] <a href="">Criticism, questions,
comments, ideas and more please to:</a><br />
[2] <a
of TUX&amp;GNU@school:</a><br />
[3] <a href="">Homepage
of Ghemical:</a><br />
[4] <a href="">Homepage of SEUL/edu:</a><br />
[5] <a href="/">Homepage of the Free
Software Foundation Europe:</a><br />
[6] <a href="">Homepage of the GNU
project:</a><br />
[7] <a href="">Questions
for a possible using of GNU/Linux and/or Free Software at
school</a><br />
[8] <a href="">Homepage of Debian:</a><br />
[9] <a href="">Homepage of KDE:</a><br />
[10] <a
about using Ghemical under Windows</a><br />
[11] <a href="">Homepage of SEUL:</a><br />
[12] <a href="">GNU
General Public License</a><br />
[13] <a href="">List of
projects hosted by SEUL</a><br />
[14] <a href="">ISO-Project
of SEUL/edu</a><br />
[15] <a href="">Database with
education software for GNU/Linux</a><br />
[16] <a
href="">Form for
entering new software to the database</a><br />
[17] <a
of schools using GNU/Linux and/or Free Software</a><br />
[18] <a href="">From
for entering new reports</a><br />
[19] <a href="">The
documentation-project of SEUL/edu</a><br />
[20] <a
documentation on seul/</a><br />
[21] <a href="">Archive with
the regular reports of SEUL/edu</a><br />
[22] <a href="">The lists
archive of SEUL/edu</a><br />
[23] <a
collection of SEUL/edu:</a><br />
[24] <a href="">Homepage of
LaTeX:</a><br />
[25] <a
of the Debian project</a><br />
[26] <a href="">Current
homepage of DebianEDU:</a><br />
<h4>About the author:</h4>
<p>Mario Fux finished 1999 the PrimarlehrerInnenseminar in
Brig after he made up mathematical and natural scientifical
matura. In a body with two colleagues he founded the <a
href="">"ALIS - Arbeitsgruppe Linux an
Schulen"</a> (Swiss work group for linux at school).
Meanwhile he studies at the <a
href="">Swiss Federal Institut of
Technology Zurich</a> <a
href="">informations technology and
electrical engineering</a>. And if he once doesn't spend his
time in front of the PC, he sits at his nature pond in the <a
<p align="center"><i>Copyright (c) 2002 Mario Fux. Permission
is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document
under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version
1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software
Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts,
and no Back-Cover Texts.<br />
A copy of the license can be found at <a
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