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As Mark Twain once said, "let us make a special effort to stop communicating with each other, so we can have some conversation." We are bombarded with communications all day, from social media and video chats to advertisements and the news. But how much of that communication do you walk away from feeling rejuvenated or inspired? 

For the last five years, Red Hat has produced documentary films as part of our Open Source Stories series, covering education, healthcare, agriculture, the arts, citizen science, sustainability, and more. We’ve delved into stories about how open source can create meaningful change. Open Source Stories began as a conversation so it’s only fitting that in its latest evolution we’re focused on just that, conversation. 

Launching today, "Common Connections," is a series of conversations between makers featured in our films that have never met before. Scholars, CEOs, educators, and engineers will come together to find the common threads in their work, explore the potential for future open source innovation and build unexpected connections.

The first film in the series, "Common Connections:  Creating the Classroom," features Charlie Reisinger, IT director for Penn Manor school district, and Melanie Shimano, founder of the Food Computer Program. We met Charlie in our very first film, "Penn Manor: The power of open in education," about a school district in Pennsylvania that is using open source thinking to involve high-school students more actively in their own education. Meanwhile, Melanie first joined us in our film, "Farming for the Future," which explores how open tools can help the agriculture system tackle future challenges. 

During their conversation, they explore some common ground in their work. They discuss why traditional educational approaches aren’t enough to shape the makers and thinkers of tomorrow, and how open source can show the real-world potential of classroom ideas. 

For more information about Open Source Stories and "Common Connections" visit Open Source Stories. Watch the film, get inspired and join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #opensourcestories.


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