Project CODE Class is the culmination of a several year project developed by Lisa Philpott and Tim Sayre to help folks learn things using computers. It stands for computer oriented developmental education. In a nutshell, it is using computers to learn things. There is a website here with an in-depth explanation of the process and a page with links to websites that provide free training for a variety of things. We started the project as a way of giving back to the community and for about three years we had a weekly class at the Economic Development Center (EDC) in Charleston where anyone was free to come in and learn things. We also had a few laptops for those who didn't have one. In March 2020, the EDC closed due to COVID so we couldn't conduct the class.
In March 2022, I almost died due to complications from surgery. During my stay in the SICU, I had an experience which convinced me to convert to Catholicism. I learned there are things that we are expected to do and one of them was to visit the imprisoned. All of the rest were fairly straight forward, like feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and housing the homeless. While talking to Lisa, the words surprised me as I said I was going to start a program to take to a prison.
After discussing it with a few friends and colleagues, the idea evolved from that into a complete training program to teach folks in prison how to work at a technical support help desk. Since I had all the material gathered and an idea outlined already, it didn't take much modification to turn it into a three day weekly program for a year that covers how to go from no background in technology to fixing computers. The outline covers a 52 week program which consists of one hour of instruction daily three days per week.
I am releasing the whole course under Creative Commons license and will try to post it here for download. I am not finished with the lesson plan and the lab is only about a third of the way completed, but if you want to look at it or use it you are welcome to it. Since the lab is just a bunch of VMs, I am creating a tutorial on how to make your own. All of the textbooks are open source but the videos and podcasts are not, however, since they are available on the internet, I am including a list of links. I could not have done this alone and tried to remember all who helped but if I forgot you, let me know. I am including the tale of my conversion, which I wrote immediately after being discharged from SICU and did not stop until it was complete. One day I would like to expand on it and make a book out of it.
The webhosting limits my downloads to 20 MB, but it's having a hard time with anything over 5. That's why I have a million textbook links. Also, a couple of the networking books didn't upload for some reason. I guess you get what you pay for. Enjoy it and have fun.
While searching for textbooks with information for the computer section, I found that not many were what I was looking for, so I decided to write my own. Then I realized that I should just write a companion book to the class and avoid all issues whatsoever with attribution. I would cover it all in the book and a lot of my ideas were original to me anyway. So I will be taking a break on updating the lesson plan while focusing on the book which I will complete before releasing, but it will be a better course overall.
UPDATE: I have finished the Windows section of the book, Useful Knowledge For The Level One Technician. It still has some placeholder pictures in the electronics section which will be replaced as soon as I can get the new pictures. I am gong to upload a draft after each section gets completed until I finish so that I can record the class as I write. It is useful info as is, it just isn't complete yet. I hope you enjoy the work and if you find any errors or have anything useful to add that I left out, send me an email and if I use it you'll go on the list and in the book with credit. If you have any trouble understanding any of it, drop me a line and I'll see if I can help.
UPDATE 2: The networking section is almost finished and all the pictures have not been replaced yet. I had a slight mishap with shift delete and had to retype some of the book, but I ended up proofing the whole thing and found some errors that have been corrected. The class recording is behind schedule, go figure. I have updated the draft of the book and will include the MD5 and SHA256 hashes for download verification. The date of each draft is located on the title page.