Introduction to Computers with Ubuntu Unity

There are many members of the NatickFOSS user group who have read this guide and made recommendations for improvement. Thank you all! The guide is intended to be a group project over time with many individuals contributing editing suggestions, topic ideas and actual guide sections.

Throughout this guide, there are images to help you understand the technical terms which are inevitable when writing about a subject like computers and software. Those images are part of "screen captures" from my own computer screen. That doesn't actually make the images "mine." Fortunately FOSS related images are part of a share-friendly system. Except for misuse of trademarks, the images from FOSS software are fair to use in documents like these.

Some of the images are actually done by me, either with a digital camera or using Inkscape for the designed/non-photo images. Those are not marked with credit in the guide sections. All my images are free to re-use, remix. Like the text, my images are licensed with the Creative Commons Attribution ( CC-BY ) license.

Standard copyright rules for images typically mean getting permission directly from the creator or from a service which processes stock photography. Authors consign their work to the stock photo service from which a person like me can purchase a license to reproduce and publish the photo in my work.

However, there are also creative types who wish to help make it easier for others to utilize a photo or other form of creative work. A non-profit group has created Creative Commons, a series of licenses for authors to use. Each license modifies standard copyright. One of the most liberal of the licenses is the one I've used for the sections of this guide. The license chosen is called "Creative Commons Attribution" or CC-BY.

CC-BY only has one restriction. It asks re-users to give me credit for the work I've done. I authorize people to make copies without consulting me as long as my identity is left on the Web pages or printed versions (no white-out, please). If a person wishes to extract a part of my work, that is fine, too, as long as I am given credit somewhere in the remixed document. That credit back to me helps the other person avoid the ethical issue of plagiarism. There isn't a need for anyone to pay me or contact me. The license I have chosen to use makes it clear what my expectations are for any reuse.

With today's Internet and the World Wide Web, Creative Commons licensing clarifies the legal uses of all that stuff for which access is just a mouse click away. Copy and paste or a simple printout reproduced at the local copy center can potentially create legal problems if licensing isn't clear. Sharing is great, and has been very effectively facilitated by licensing like the Creative Commons. I give my thanks for the work that the Creative Commons developers have done.

There are images in this guide with their own license terms. I consciously chose to include only images which used a Creative Commons license. I avoided including "all rights reserved" images (even ones for which I would have paid) since that would have limited your rights to redistribute what I've done here. But, some of the images which I did use are licensed less liberally than the overall document. That means: if you use a part of this work which has an image whose license is "CC-BY-SA" then you must also let others use your work with no more (or fewer) restrictions than that. You must "share-alike", giving the work freely for others to use, redistribute, modify and redistribute. You may not add limitations, nor remove them. The "share-alike" images cannot be recaptured into a work under a typical "all rights reserved" copyright. The chain continues from there, endlessly. A "share-alike" work must always remain under the same license terms. You and all others who follow you, must adhere to the wishes of the original author until the end of copyright for the work. At that point, the work enters the public domain.

Creative Commons licensing is an integral part of the copyright system. It does not live outside copyright law.

Images from are declared by their creators to be in the public domain, therefore, free of any restrictions on use.

I believe sharing is good. I taught in public schools before my retirement. I was happy to share my own knowledge with my students and to pass along what my own teachers had worked to help me learn. I didn't ask the kids in class to forget what they heard me say. That would have been silly. I hoped they would remember the things they needed and that they, too would be happy to share with their friends and family.

Share! Just do it right.

© 2013 Algot Runeman - Shared using the Creative Commons Attribution license.
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