UberStudent, a Linux distribution for learning, doing, and teaching academic success at the higher education and advanced secondary levels, has reached version 4.0.
UberStudent 4.0 has been dubbed Socrates. It features a traditional desktop environment and is based on Xfce. The distribution aims to be a complete, ready-to-go, and out-of-the-box Learning Platform for education.
“UberStudent fundamentally redefines what it means to be an operating system for education. At core, it is a pedagogically cohesive academic success curriculum integrated into an installable, easy-to-use, and full-featured learning platform. Learning UberStudent means learning the tasks and habits common to all academically successful students. Learning UberStudent also means learning not only computer literacy, but computer fluency, due to its open source nature.”
“UberStudent is developed by a professional educator who specializes in academic success strategies, post-secondary literacy instruction, and educational technology. It has been designed around a core academic skills approach to student success—the research and writing, reading, studying, and self-management skills that are essential to all students,” reads the official website.
The developer has rebased this operating system on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. It took him a while, because this Linux distribution is somewhat different from the base and numerous modifications have been made. This particular version of UberStudent should prove to be a very popular release, as it will benefit from five years of support.
Canonical launched Ubuntu 14.04 LTS on April 17, 2014, and the support for this distribution will end in 2019, which is actually a very long time. The distribution is also based on Linux kernel 3.13, which is shared with Ubuntu. This particular version of the kernel reached end of life a short while ago and the developers from Canonical are now the official maintainers.
The default desktop is Xfce 4.10 and very few modifications have been implemented, so it shouldn't be too alien for users who already know what Xfce looks like. The OS also benefits from a custom repository, built specifically for UberStudent.
The Linux distribution still has a few problems, although they are minor and will be fixed soon. For example, in some GTK3 applications, the progress bar using the default “A+” theme series is a bit disproportionate, and there is a small lag in the Applications menu right after the boot sequence has been completed.