Beck, CEO

Beck, aka Brian Beck, is an Educator that has 20+ years working in Higher Education in Digital Imaging & Design, Instructional Design, and Faculty Development.

Over a decade ago, he realized there was a lack of focus on innovation through technology that would truly impact taxpayers and public education.

Where did learnOPENtech come from?

The inspiration for learnOPENtech came from a community outreach project Beck helped start in San Angelo, Texas in 2011 named TexOS - The Texas Open Source Project. The program took donated computers from the community and partnered with school counselors and other non-profit organizations that work with kids and families who didn't have access to technology in their homes. They would pass along TexOS's application for the kids to fill out as to how a computer would help them. After the students went through training on the Open Source computers, they got to take them home, free to keep and encouraged to share their knowledge with others.

New Computers, new mindset

SAN ANGELO, Texas — Two banks of industrial black flat screens and computer towers dwarfed the children tapping on matching keyboards or wielding a mouse with mighty intent at a recent Saturday workshop in an office on the second floor of Angelo State University's library.

The 12 middle school students — six girls and six boys — were not the usual visitors to the Porter Henderson Library, but it was their third Saturday in a row, part of the "sweat equity" they had agreed to to take home one of those computers.

They were part of the launch of "TexOS, the Texas Open Source Project," a two-man nonprofit operation that hopes to provide not only a computer to a needy child but also a whole new mindset.

Brian Beck, a technology instructional specialist for ASU's Center for Innovation in Teaching & Research and the temporary home of TexOS, said the key is introducing the students to Open Source Software, more than 30,000 programs that allow users to access source code, modify it, learn from it and share it with others, all for free.

"Open Source Software is a mindset; it's about innovating," Beck said. "You're literally given the tools to create something new. It's about sharing, collaborating, innovating and creating."

Beck said the goal is to "upturn the whole idea of education."

"These are the kinds of things I really wanted to show them, to be self-sufficient, part of a team and problem solvers," he said.

  • NAACP of San Angelo, Texas
  • Southside Lion's Club of San Angelo, Texas
  • Habitat for Humanity of San Angelo, Texas
  • Heart Gallery of Northwest Texas 
  • Angelo State University
  • Howard College in San Angelo, Texas
  • TAME - Texas Alliance for Minorities in Engineering
  • San Angelo Museum of Fine Art Education
  • CREO of San Angelo, Texas

  • Improving student classroom and academic performance
  • Improving student understanding of technology as it applies to life, as well as educational success
  • Providing low cost access to educational and other useful software for all other purposes
  • Helping students see technology as a bridge to communication
  • Creating an active learning mindset that spreads from students to friends and other family members