BERNIE (Basic Educational Resources Needed for Innovative Education)


The Basic Educational Resources Needed for Innovative Education (BERNIE) is an external one terabyte hard drive containing documentation, software, and educational content needed to support deployment of the XO laptops. Everything on BERNIE is open source or open educational content (public domain or under a Creative Commons or comparable license).

The olpc community supports deployment of OLPC XO laptops to community schools in the developing world. Some of these deployments are national in scope involving hundreds of schools and thousands of laptops, e.g. Uruguay, Peru, Paraguay, Rwanda, and Australia. However, there are many deployments of 30 to 200 laptops at a single site sponsored by individuals or small groups.

The sponsor of a small deployment needs to acquire laptops, a school server, wifi routers, and, in many cases the equipment to provide the site with solar power. The goal of BERNIE is to bring together in one place the various bits of software and content which will be needed to set up an integrated installation with abundant educational resources.

BERNIE can generate installation usb drives for each of the four XO laptop versions. It can generate an install usb drive for the school server. The bulk of the hard drive is devoted to educational content copied to the school server and made available by the local network. 

Braddock Gaskill and his Internet in a Box team have collected 41 different versions of Wikipedia including the full English, French, Spanish, and German versions. The IIAB includes all of the books from Project Gutenberg, currently about 44,000. It also includes all of the approximately 3000 Khan Academy videos covering a wide range of topics but with a special focus on mathematics.Finally, IIAB includes a global map based on Open Street Maps.

OLE Nepal has provided its library, E-Pustakalaya and its collection of several hundred interactive lessons, E-Paath. BERNIE provides a copy of Khan Academy Lite which provides video and exercises covering elementary mathematics and many more advanced topics. 

It also includes slideshows using screenshots to introduce students and teachers to many of the features of the XO, Sugar, and the principal Sugar Activities. This feature can help laptop users independently discover new uses for the system after the initial training. BERNIE also contains a complete set of Sugar Activities which users can download and install from the school server. 

BERNIE contains full e-textbooks for English and Mathematics for grades 1-6 plus textbooks for science and technology for grades 4-6 from the Siyavula Project hosted on Connexions at Rice University (

While this content approaches 800GB, there are far more valuable resources available from the Open Source community that can be added to make this resource even more valuable to olpc deployments world-wide.


Bel Air
Saturday, February 22, 2014 - 13:30 to 14:30