Connecting dots for digital learning and teaching

A Tour through Open Source Creative Tools

by Máirín Duffy (Red Hat), from (licensed under CC BY-SA)

LIFE_LightningTalks Image credits: Flickr user Leszek.Leszczynski

Every tool in this talk is available via Fedora 17, the latest version of Fedora. Here’s a quick rundown of the tools represented in this talk.

MyPaint and Krita are fantastic sketching apps that feature natural-feeling digital brushes. Darktable is a raw image processing app with great effects. Inkscape is the speaker’s, Máirín Duffy’s, favorite tool; it is a vector illustration program similiar to Adobe Illustrator. Xournal allows you to annotate, doodle or otherwise write on top of PDF files and save your changes out.

Calligra Flow, similar to Microsoft Visio, allows users to implement quick diagrams. Scribus enables users to create print-ready designs such as newsletters and posters and includes CMYK colorspace support; it is comparable toAdobe InDesign.

CMYKTool allows you to convert RGB colorspace designs to CMYK colorspace for more accurate color printing. GNOME Color Manager enables you to calibrate your computer display with a colorimeter such as the Pantone Huey or, more preferably, the open hardware ColorHug colorimeter device. This will ensure your colors onscreen will more accurately match your print output colors in design work.

Audacity lets you chop up and remix music and other audio files. Hydrogen is a digital drum machine (it’s easy and fun for kids to use too) and Mixxx is a professional DJ application that you can use to beat match and mix songs. Blender is a 3-D application that includes modeling, rendering, animation, and other 3-D tools. Synfig Studio is a 2-D animation application, somewhat similar to Adobe’s Flash editor, that lets you create tweened animations.

Kdenlive and PiTiVi are both great open source non-linear video editors. Gnome Wacom Controls is a panel on Fedora 17 used to customize the feel of your Wacom tablet. Sparkleshare is a tool similar to Dropbox that enables designers toshare assets.

Note: LibreGraphicsMeeting is an annual event where you can meet and learn from developers and expert users of open source creative tools like these. Next year’s LGM 2013 will be in Madrid, Spain, at MediaLab Prado. For more information check out their website.

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  1. A Tour through Open Source Creative Tools | Les TIC a les Ciències Socials

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“Tell me and I will forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I will understand.” -------- Chinese Wisdom "Games are the most elevated form of investigation." -------- Albert Einstein
"I'm calling for investments in educational technology that will help create digital tutors that are as effective as personal tutors, educational software as compelling as the best video game," President Barack Obama said while touring a tech-focused Boston school (year 2011).
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