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175,000 FOSS USB Flash Drives in Paris

Yahoo News reports that 175,000 USB Flash Drives loaded with open source programs will be distributed to Parisian high school students next school year (fall 2007).

The drives will contain Firefox 2, Thunderbird, OpenOffice, an IM client and audio and video players. (Based on the explanation, it sounds like they will be the portable versions of these applications.)

“The sticks will give the students, aged 15 and 16, the freedom to access their e-mail, browser bookmarks and other documents on computers at school, home, a friend’s house or in an Internet cafĂ© — but at a much lower cost than providing notebook computers for all, a spokesman for the Greater Paris Regional Council said Friday.”

Slashdot also discussed the story in its usual energetic way.

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