Print 42 comment(s) - last by Cheesew1z69.. on Sep 30 at 10:21 PM

Home use of the iPads is now on hold

It only took a week for high school students to hack their iPads once the L.A. Unified School District (LAUSD) rolled them out. 

According to the Los Angeles Times, students who received iPads for learning purposes at Theodore Roosevelt High School (which is part of LAUSD) were able to “hack” them after only one week. The hack allowed Theodore Roosevelt's 300 students to access websites like Facebook, Twitter and Pandora. 

Westchester High School and the Valley Academy of Arts and Sciences in Granada Hills also reported iPad hacks. 

The students were able to hack the iPads -- which had security locks on them to prevent certain activities like social networks -- rather easily. According to students, all they had to do was delete their personal profile information. Without the profile, they could access the Web freely. 

LAUSD has halted the use of the iPads at home until the situation can be figured out. 

"Outside of the district's network ... a user is free to download content and applications and browse the Internet without restriction," two senior administrators said in a memo to the Board of education and L.A. schools Supt. John Deasy. "As student safety is of paramount concern, breach of the ... system must not occur."

Apple scored a $30 million contract from LAUSD back in June, which aimed to put an iPad in the hands of every student in LAUSD for educational purposes. LAUSD is paying $678 per iPad, which comes pre-loaded with educational software, but won't include a keyboard. 

The school district also committed to spending "hundreds of millions of dollars" with Apple over the next two years, since they chose the company as their only tablet vendor. 

This means that LAUSD better find a solution quick so that its millions of dollars don't go to waste. The iPads are needed both in school and at home for reading and homework purposes. 

Source: The Los Angeles Times

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By retrospooty on 9/26/2013 1:03:57 PM , Rating: 5
Stupid plan in the first place. We are broke, CA is broke and LA is broke. Buying that many tablets of any type is a bad idea. Buying overpriced tablets is an even worse one.

By Motoman on 9/26/2013 1:17:52 PM , Rating: 5
You are correct in every way.

Also, I'd like to point out that in no way is any of this a "hack." Hacking something means you found a technological loophole and exploited it in a manner that the original developers didn't intend.

What these kids did was to delete their user profiles. That's not a "hack" by any stretch of the imagination. It's clicking the "delete" button.

And of course it's a clear demonstration of the schools themselves being dumber than the kids. Not that there's even the slightest bit of value in the ridiculous attempt to involve tablets in the school environment anyway.

By xti on 9/26/13, Rating: -1
By retrospooty on 9/26/2013 2:01:14 PM , Rating: 3
"yeah this isnt a hack....well its a hack job attempt to make apple look bad, go DT!"

What on earth are you even talking about? Put the tin foil Apple logo'd Asshat back on. This in no way says anything bad about Apple. It was a stupid move by the LASD period.

By Cheesew1z69 on 9/26/2013 2:59:21 PM , Rating: 2
Look who you are talking to...

What on earth are you even talking about?
When does he ever make sense? Never...

I think he is just a slower functioning version of Pirks...

By retrospooty on 9/26/2013 3:26:21 PM , Rating: 2
LOL... I swear this guy and Jack Burton sit alone in front of their computers like Rainman, muttering "yeah... Everyone insults Apple... Definitely, everyone insults and copies Apple. Yeah. Its all about Apple, yeah... yeah... "

FFS, get a grip.

By xti on 9/27/13, Rating: 0
By ritualm on 9/28/2013 1:32:58 PM , Rating: 1
LOL at you going all defensive, and no, you have it all wrong. This topic has more to do with government and public sector incompetence than the failings of a company's products.

You're the one who attempted to troll-bait us with your pro-Apple bullsh!t, so you got downranked and had people disagree with you for good reason. Now you're just whining about them.

Poor sport.

By xti on 9/30/2013 5:31:06 PM , Rating: 2
i dont any apple products, im talking about DT moron. DT doesnt post stuff about news, they are a geeky gossip column.

By Cheesew1z69 on 9/28/2013 10:59:27 PM , Rating: 1
Stalking? These are public threads, hardly stalking. Post everyday? I don't post everyday, and certainly not to you or at you. The fact you think you have some kind of "power", ROFL!

I think you are a bumbling idiot who offers absolutely 0 to these discussions.

And "fag"? Really? That's all you have? Ok Pirks 2.0....

By xti on 9/30/2013 5:28:36 PM , Rating: 2
you make it a point to post on all my replies.

just admit you have so gay man crush on me.

By Cheesew1z69 on 9/30/2013 10:21:54 PM , Rating: 2
you make it a point to post on all my replies.

By Monkey's Uncle on 9/26/2013 6:19:34 PM , Rating: 1
Sorry son.

Apple themselves beat these kids to punch in that regard.

Note DT does not write these articles - only reposts them (duh!)

By jeffbui on 9/26/2013 9:04:28 PM , Rating: 3
Tablets are extremely useful in a learning environment. I'm currently going through medical school and my iPad has been more useful to me than my notebook computer. I take notes on it, and I can pull up information in electronic books faster than I can with paper books. Search/highlight keywords, etc.

Implemented properly, tablets can be a valuable tool for educational use.

By ritualm on 9/26/2013 9:42:59 PM , Rating: 1
Implemented properly, tablets can be a valuable tool for educational use.

Only happens for private schools. They almost never go as planned in public school systems.

You can be in charge of so much epic fail in a public school board, and - as long as you don't do anything incredibly stupid (e.g. sexual harassment) - still keep your jobs.

By GotThumbs on 9/26/2013 11:56:14 PM , Rating: 2
I take notes on it, and I can pull up information in electronic books faster than I can with paper books. Search/highlight keywords, etc.

So far that's just a very limited description of what PC's are capable of. You may be fine using a tablet, but your expectations seem very limited IMO.

I hope your an A+ student in medical school, because your not suited for an IT Job IMO.

Best of luck in medical school.

By Darksurf on 9/28/2013 4:36:06 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately, according to dictionary standards, hacking can be known as something as simple as replacing memory in a PC. Even so, we technologically inclined folks know better.

Also, "hacking" and being a "hacker" doesn't mean you're a bad person or even doing wrong. That is another common misconception among ignorant people today.

It makes me sad how people today misuse/abuse words because they are too lazy to learn what they really mean. People like to demonize things they cannot understand.

Their methods of "restriction" was merely circumvented, not hacked.

By HoosierEngineer5 on 9/26/2013 1:33:42 PM , Rating: 2
But.. but... How can they be cool hipsters unless they adopt the latest technology?

Just because we can, we must!

By overlandpark4me on 9/26/2013 2:02:02 PM , Rating: 2
Next thing will be to give them out at the border so illegal aliens can take the most direct route to their destination.

By Spookster on 9/26/2013 4:45:10 PM , Rating: 4
If they are using Apples navigation app then by all means, they would probably end up running off a cliff.

By Hakuryu on 9/26/2013 2:43:12 PM , Rating: 2
The telling reason will be donations made to official's re-election campaigns from Apple; if they weren't able to hide them under fake groups like Americans for a Better Government.

By tayb on 9/26/2013 3:28:38 PM , Rating: 2
If they don't spend the money this year they won't get it next year. It's the absurdity of school budgets. I have a sister who teaches in Texas and I can really truly scare you with stories she tells me.

By Rukkian on 9/27/2013 1:39:10 PM , Rating: 2
That is actually how it works in the corporate world (at least in my experience) as well. Departments buy things they dont need at the moment, cause if they don't use their budget one year, then it gets cut the amount they did not use (plus some more) each year.

By YearOfTheDingo on 9/26/2013 3:29:53 PM , Rating: 2
The again, $678 is actually a small amount if you consider that LA spends $25,000 per student per year.

By dgingerich on 9/26/2013 7:13:31 PM , Rating: 2
That is just totally ridiculous considering their success rates. That's more than college spending, and they get far less out of it. Just shows you throwing more money at a problem doesn't fix anything.

By MechanicalTechie on 9/26/2013 9:24:43 PM , Rating: 2
Your posts are devoid of logic and your reasoning divorced from reality.. a bad investment is still a bad investment.. giving the runts an tablet is in no means going to improve their education and will only act as yet another distraction.

By ritualm on 9/28/2013 1:40:56 PM , Rating: 2
Problem with your argument is it's too logical.

People have been crying about increasing education funding across the country. None of them cared to look at graduation rates and underlying social conditions. The most underperforming school districts get boatloads of taxpayer money, while the best ones get squat.

And the ones who get all that moolah would just look for ways to spend them as inhumanly fast as possible. Hence, these poorly-thought out contracts and system backends. Who cares? They get something shiny to play with! Even if the public finds out, many of them are so gullible they'll take whatever excuse these guys can come up with.

By FITCamaro on 9/27/2013 7:33:59 AM , Rating: 2
I went to private school and my entire 4 year high school education didn't cost my parents that much.

Thank God I plan to home school. Of course I'll still be forced to pay for terrible schools that neither me nor my children used/will use.

By SoCalBoomer on 9/26/2013 1:05:31 PM , Rating: 3
The general reporting on this is that the students are just too smart for the administrators. . . and while this is absolutely true, it's not the students in general. Rather it's a few students (as it's always been) and then a huge number of kids who use social networking to communicate and then follow directions. . .

First, the administrators were and are idiots. NO plans for replacement or repairs for broken iPads; attempts to get parents (most of whom likely couldn't afford iPads in the first place) to take responsibility for the iPads if/when they got broken - which I wouldn't do; NO plans for a rotation of equipment as it gets amortized; and NO serious plan for device management.

Second, NOT all the students, or even a majority or a large minority of students, have the ability to figure out the hack (really a light-duty jailbreak, yes?) on their own. Instead, it's a few of them who figured it out and then reported it on FB, Twitter, etc. whereupon it spread as you can imagine.

It's not, as is being reported, this huge generational technology gap. Your general kid isn't a tech wiz - I work with them. They're smart, yes. They pick stuff up and can hit the buttons smartly and promptly, yes. But throw them for a loop and they're just as stuck as anyone. Rather, they have tools that nobody else has ever had to allow that minority that has always existed to send out instructions as to how things can be fixed, hacked, whatever.

Of course, the gap between the LAUSD administrators and the kids? Yeah - that's an intelligence gap that can be measured in PARSECS. . .

By Nutzo on 9/26/2013 1:35:42 PM , Rating: 2
First, the administrators were and are idiots. NO plans for replacement or repairs for broken iPads; attempts to get parents (most of whom likely couldn't afford iPads in the first place) to take responsibility for the iPads if/when they got broken - which I wouldn't do; NO plans for a rotation of equipment as it gets amortized; and NO serious plan for device management.

That's just as I figured when they annouced this deal. No real thought went into the planning, just alot of wasted money. Just like when alot of schools rolled out netbooks (remember them?), and a couple years later they quietly dumped them.

By Ammohunt on 9/26/2013 3:19:25 PM , Rating: 2
No real thought went into the planning, just alot of wasted money.

Typical government program *see: Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act aka Obamacare.

By ritualm on 9/26/2013 9:34:49 PM , Rating: 2
No, it isn't. Nothing to do with Obama at all. In fact, even if Palin or Romney is running the show, crap like these will still happen.

Those school administrators don't give a damn about it - it isn't their own money being used to fund these pork barrel projects, after all. Oh it blew up? They'll find a scapegoat, fire the poor lad, and keep going as if everything's A-OK. Worst case scenario? These guys lose their jobs.

In less than democratic places, it's not totally unheard of that poor performers pay the price of failure with their very lives.

By FlyBri on 9/26/2013 3:47:34 PM , Rating: 2
I believe you are mistaken about there being no replacement or repairs for broken iPads. To my understanding, the iPads purchased by the LAUSD have a three year warranty, in addition to there being replacement devices available (up to a certain amount).

And on a related note, there is a misconception a lot of people have, which is that they think they are purchasing "overpriced" iPads, when in fact they are paying for an extended warranty and replacement plan, as well as all the preloaded educational software. A person can totally disagree with the LAUSD purchasing the iPads in the first place, but in terms of overpaying for the iPads, that isn't the case, as it's not equivalent to a typical iPad purchased at a store...

By Rukkian on 9/27/2013 1:46:31 PM , Rating: 3
I think most understand that, but why so much. It looks like the school district is paying retail for these things (plus the extras) and getting no discounts (or very little). When you know that Apple is making $300+ on each device, there no reason why an order of this magnitude shouldn't have been negotiated that the software and warranty should have been added in for free at full retail, not added on top.

This just shows that somebody at the district is inept (at best) or corrupt (getting kick backs) from what looks like a very poorly negotiated contract. This would never fly in most companies.

If Apple were unwilling to negotiate, I am sure there are other companies that would have. Public school kids getting free devices do not neccessarily need a idevice. Very little (if any) of the programs available for the ipad they are using would be unavailable on Android.

By hpglow on 9/26/2013 1:42:42 PM , Rating: 2
Hey Apple it's a damn school eat some of your massive profit and cut them a deal. Why are public schools paying extra for a small amount of educational software? Who are the morons that approved this deal?

RE: $678?
By Spuke on 9/26/2013 2:23:19 PM , Rating: 2
Who are the morons that approved this deal?

RE: $678?
By augiem on 9/26/2013 3:02:43 PM , Rating: 2
Asus - 15.6" Laptop - 4GB Memory - 320GB Hard Drive - Brown-Black $269 at Best Buy.

If they had got the students something like this they would have been able to get 2.5x the number (if needed) or could just replace them sooner without wasting any cash, and the students could actually learn some useful computer skills to boot. Teach em how to MAKE apps, websites, videos, etc, not just how to consume them. Or, get em a $678 touch-screen laptop if you have to spend the $ now.

RE: $678?
By Ammohunt on 9/26/2013 3:16:26 PM , Rating: 2
My kids school is buying Chromebooks for every classroom for the same reason.

RE: $678?
By FlyBri on 9/26/2013 3:51:13 PM , Rating: 2
It's not just the preloaded educational software -- they are also getting a three year warranty as well as a replacement program.

Smarter than a 5th grader???
By GotThumbs on 9/27/2013 12:00:44 AM , Rating: 3
Seems like the school board is NOT smarter than a 5th grader.

IMO they went for the sales pitch hook, line and sinker. The could have done just as well with less expensive tablets and still had the limited functionality of a tablet.

For 399.00 they could have purchased full laptop PC's with far greater capabilities. It was just an Apple experiment...and its not going well so far.

~Best wishes keeping what you earned.

By Movieman420 on 9/27/2013 9:07:16 AM , Rating: 2
Did the school district actually think this wasn't gonna happen? Next they'll be totally wiped and the LA pawn shops will be

By unimatrix725 on 9/29/2013 4:13:02 PM , Rating: 2
When I was in high school ~1994 in Tennessee @ David Crockett I had a "similar" experience. I was in a "Vo-Tech" (Graphic Arts/Desktop Pub) and was tinkering with the then current Apple "Centris 660AV". I downloaded a shareware app to modify the mouse. It would make the mouse change colors, flip and other things. I got yelled at and forgot about the control panel app, which was left on random. Half way thru the day the teacher found me and asked if I infected the computer. I said no and explained, he sighed and said I already reported it to the Principal. Off I went and was threatened with malicious and willful damage to a school network! I opined it was downloaded from AOL he could check it out. No dice I had to write a 10K essay over the weekend on computer security. If I did not then I would be turned over to the local police for action, which was explained as Federal Charges. That guy was a total douche! Knowing what I do now I would have gave him the finger & got in real trouble. This has been summarized. Now the laws have changed greatly, I could even see thier high school principal screaming DMCA violation or worse...

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