A major aim for the Software section of the Information Centre is to give people a greater understanding to just what software is available to them.
This will include any requests that are submitted for specific pieces of software that someone may be looking for. But this will mainly be to provide alternative software packages to the expensive market leaders. The primary example is Microsoft Windows and Office.
The latest Operating System Windows 7 currently costs approximately £130 for a brand new installation DVD of the "Professional" edition or £90 for the upgrade DVD which means you must have a version of Windows (i.e. XP) already installed on your machine. Microsoft are also due to release their latest Operating System - Windows 8. Although so far it does not appear that it will be a hit but this remains to be seen.
As well as Windows, Microsoft offer Office, their latest version being 2010 currently costing approximately £90 for the standard Home and Student edition and if you want Outlook (e-mail client) then you will need a copy of the Home and Business version which is around £160.
What most people are unaware of, is that there are alternatives available to Microsoft products. It may be a case of you have never heard of them or are not comfortable with getting to know a new system and working with a new infrastructure.
I am currently using an alternative Operating System called Linux, specifically, a distribution called Ubuntu with an Office suite alternative, simply called OpenOffice.
Depending on whether I get enough public interest on the topic or not, I would be more than happy to start a Knowledge Database on using Ubuntu to replace a users current Operating System, creating guides and manuals or provide links to websites that already have these readily available.
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