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Thread: Tablet/Laptop for group use

  1. #16
    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    i would not buy a tablet, scout association online is not mobile-friendly.

    i just tried and compass really doesn't work well on mobile... overlays run off the side of the screen and buttons don't appear.
    Last edited by big chris; 12-09-2017 at 09:22 AM.

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  3. #17
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    The Chromebook idea is interesting, but may be unfamiliar to people.

    TBH I'd just go and buy a cheapo 200-odd quid 15" heavyweight Windows laptop from Tesco. Any should do.

    Or something like this (basically a netbook) on Amazon for 160 quid:

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/iOTA-ONE-10...5208774&sr=1-1

    If you want to keep it easy to manage, just get it set up and make an image copy of the hard drive, then re-image it once every couple of months or if it starts to misbehave.
    Last edited by Neil Williams; 12-09-2017 at 09:34 AM.

  4. #18
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sitb2000 View Post
    We purchased some refurbished laptops from http://www.tier1online.com/

    We then got around 6 desktops towers (complete with monitor, keyboard and mouse) from work who were just throwing them out because they were too big.
    We recently got rid of a stack of donated desktop towers. They'd been sat in the cupboard at the hall as a "project" that never got done, and after sitting there for 2 years we decided we wanted to the space back. We kept the 4 best looking ones. The computers were going to be used for a JOTI event, but we now have a big box of linux laptops that we use for stuff at work which I can lend to the group for things like joti.

    Recently we recruited a group administrator so added a 2nd desk to the office... we went through the 4 towers we'd kept and they were all pretty knackered... so the last ones are off to the tip as well now, and we obtained a PC that one of our leaders no longer required at home instead. Both have Win 10 Pro installed and the latest version of office.

    We run using Office 365 for Non Profits with each leader having a login which gives them a group email account and access to the two office computers.
    Dan Spencer

    Group Scout Leader 66th Bath
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  5. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cbKernow View Post
    Although linux is pretty user friendly these days, i think you're inevitably going to have problems supporting it when everyone wants to install printers, and bluetooth speakers or new bits of software.
    That's not the idea. The idea is that every HQ has a machine with a working browser to access compass and OSM. That way, it should always work for them; if they get something and start fiddling about with it, although it might be useful to the one who knows what to do, it would probably be a nuisance to less techy leaders.

    Quote Originally Posted by cbKernow View Post
    I'm very much a windows/android user but if you've got the budget an ipad mini with a very good case would be great, with less money a cheaper android tablet would fit the bill, Amazon HD tablets are amazing really for the money.
    The price of apple products is a definite turn off there. Like others have mentioned, I am concerned that the lack of a keyboard would be a nuisance when trying to access compass/OSM.

    Quote Originally Posted by cbKernow View Post
    Alternatively scrap all that and find some proper techy leaders in the district who could setup a kind of code club Scout active Support unit to provide techy support and RasPi lessons and JOTI activities :-)
    I am planning to do just that at some point, and have mentioned it here before now, however that's an entirely separate project ;-)

    Quote Originally Posted by KingstonCubber View Post
    If they're just aimed for using Compass and OSM you only really need a browser.
    Exactly.

    Quote Originally Posted by KingstonCubber View Post
    But that raises an interesting point. You're perhaps better discussing with the groups what they would use it for and what type of device they want.
    County recently paid for OSM for all districts, which is brilliant, therefore we're trying to encourage groups to use it by removing as many barriers as possible.
    Martin (GSL & acting CSL)

  6. #20
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    How about something like this:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/726212-linx-10...saAksHEALw_wcB

    Can be used as a tablet (great if you want to be able to stand at the front of the hall ticking off the register) or can be clipped into its keyboard and used as a laptop.

    Cheap, and works pretty well - plus charges from USB so easy to keep charged if you want to take it to camp etc.
    Dan Spencer

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  7. #21
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    I was thinking that a 10.1" screen would be too small - what do you guys think?

    Assuming that's not too small then there are a few Chromebooks available which can be used either as a tablet or netbook. http://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/computi...34431-pdt.html

    I've never used ChromeOS though but presumably some of you have otherwise you would not recommend them. Are they easy to keep updated like Ubuntu?
    If someone wanted to attach a projector during a training session, it says it has mini HDMI, not VGA so that may be an issue if the projector is not modern. Has anyone tried connecting a printer to one?

    I'm erring on the side of Linux because I know it I am but open to persuasion...
    Martin (GSL & acting CSL)

  8. #22
    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    Don all the hqs have internet?

    We do. But I bet many don't

    Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk

  9. #23
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    Don all the hqs have internet?

    We do. But I bet many don't

    Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk
    A fair point.

    As far as I know we are the only Scout-owned HQ in the district to have a broadband connection, other than the district HQ.

    I suspect some of the groups that meet in church halls etc have wifi.

    At least one group meets in a hall that doesnt have wifi and has pretty poor mobile reception.
    Dan Spencer

    Group Scout Leader 66th Bath
    Deputy District Commissioner (Programme) - City of Bath District
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  10. #24
    AESL & AGSL shiftypete's Avatar
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    Our meeting place doesn't even have a phone line nevermind broadband. However, I can use my mobile as a wifi hotspot when I want to use the internet at the hall, which is not very often.

    Peter Andrews AESL of Headingley Pirates ESU, Assistant Group Scout Leader & Webmaster of Falkoner Scout Group
    www.falkonerscouts.org.uk

    Wike, North Leeds District Campsite - www.wikecampsite.org.uk
    www.leeds-solar.co.uk
    Please note all views expressed are my own and not those of any organisation I'm associated with

  11. #25
    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiftypete View Post
    Our meeting place doesn't even have a phone line nevermind broadband. However, I can use my mobile as a wifi hotspot when I want to use the internet at the hall, which is not very often.
    Could we run Scouting without Wifi at the hall? Yes of course we could

    Could we run Scouting as effectively without wifi at the hall? No

    We use OSM for everything. We also use cloud based document storage, and cloud based booking systems for the hall and bus, and we've also just started using a cloud based invoicing system. Our group administrator is able to come in, sit in the office, and have access both to any paperwork that she needs, and also to all the online stuff. Our treasurer can sit at home and view the invoices that the administrator has sent out. When leaders need to prepare for camps and events (or even section nights) they can come in and do all the printing, laminating, etc in the office rather than taking over their homes (which, as a lot of our leaders are students living in shared accommodation, is really useful)
    Dan Spencer

    Group Scout Leader 66th Bath
    Deputy District Commissioner (Programme) - City of Bath District
    Nights Away Adviser and member of District Executive Committee - City of Bath District
    Member of Avon County Appointments Advisory Committee
    Event organiser "Be Prepared" Resilience Events
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  12. #26
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    We don't have a phone or broadband but the mobile reception seems OK. I'm also fairly sure that as a BT broadband customer at home, there is at least one neighbouring house whose wifi I can use as part of my contract which seems to work OK for OSM purposes anyway.
    Does anyone know what's going on?

  13. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    Don all the hqs have internet?
    We're trialling Mifi for those that don't.
    Martin (GSL & acting CSL)

  14. #28
    Senior Member derekchambers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsheehan View Post

    On the subject of actually answering the question (sorry!) I would suggest an iPad would be ideal mostly because of how familiar the OS is to virtually everyone these days.
    we are considering chromebook
    Derek Chambers,

  15. #29
    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by derekchambers View Post
    we are considering chromebook
    a cheap laptop or a chromebook will be perfect.

    don't choose something with a mobile OS. compass etc do not work on mobile.

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  17. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by big chris View Post
    a cheap laptop or a chromebook will be perfect.

    don't choose something with a mobile OS. compass etc do not work on mobile.
    Even if they did, you really want a proper keyboard for this kind of thing.

    Tablets are for consuming media.

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