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Sources of information


Wikipedia imageSince its creation in 2001, Wikipedia has rapidly grown into the largest reference Web site on the Internet. The content of Wikipedia is free, and is written collaboratively by people from all around the world. This Web site is a wiki, which means that anyone with access to an Internet-connected computer can edit, correct, or improve information throughout the encyclopedia, simply by clicking the edit this page link (with a few minor exceptions, such as protected articles and the main page).

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General office freeware

The Open CD

The Open CD imageThe Open CD project contains many free software applications including, which can be given free to children and allows them to continue to work on files at home that were created in school using MS Office. Also there is a compression utility called 7-zip which is a good, and absolutely free, alternative to WinZip.

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CAD freeware

Sketch Up

Sketch Up imageGoogle SketchUp (free) is an easy-to-learn 3D modelling program whose few simple tools enable you to create 3D models of houses, sheds, decks, home additions, woodworking projects even space ships. You can add details, textures and glass to your models, design with dimensional accuracy, and place your finished models in Google Earth, share them with others by posting them to the 3D Warehouse, or print hard copies. Google SketchUp (free) is a great way to discover if 3D modeling is right for you.


BlockCAD imageBlockCAD is a freeware program for building virtual models with Lego-like bricks. You can save your models, or save pictures of them (.bmp, .jpg), even reuse a complete model as a part in another model.


eMachineShop imageeMachineShop is a company that offers the opportunity for anyone to design parts online and have them manufactured by a local engineering company. To make this happen an easy-to-use piece of CAD software is available as a free download. The software is able to output .dxf files and includes also comprehensive databases covering machining operations and materials properties.

IKEA kitchen planner

IKEA kitchen planner imageCreate a whole new virtual kitchen for your home, with the IKEA kitchen planner. Planning your kitchen couldn't be easier. You can drag and drop kitchen units and appliances into layouts, view them in 3-D, try different colours, print your design.
Office planner software is also available (see

West Point Bridge Designer 2005

West Point Bridge Designer 2005 imageThe West Point Bridge Designer 2005 will introduce you to engineering through an authentic, hands-on design experience. This software provides you with the tools to model, test, and optimize a steel highway bridge, based on realistic specifications, constraints, and performance criteria.

Wild Things!

Wild Things! imageWild Things! is a fully functional FREE program for drafting and printing patterns for hats, bags, wraps, and footwear.

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Electronics and control freeware

Crocodile Clips

Crocodile Clips imageCrocodile Clips 3 Elementary is a freeware version of the well known circuit design software.


RobotProg imageRobotProg is a simple Logo style on-screen control program which can be used to develop procedures at a number of levels of difficulty (Note this is marked as: donationware).

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Image processing freeware freeware


BIMP imageA common problem when using PowerPoint is that users create presentations which are far too big to email or store on the internet. This is because PowerPoint creates the illusion that images are resized to fit but actually stores them at their original (often very large) size. You can either use something like CorelDraw, PaintShopPro or XaraX to modify the images individually before you use them or simply place all images in a folder and use a free download called BIMP to process all images together as a single batch. Using BIMP you can specify what size and what type the images should be - choose jpeg for photos and gif for diagrams.


Picasa imagePicasa is software that helps you instantly find, edit and share all the pictures on your PC. Every time you open into visual albums organised by date with folder names you will recognize. You can drag and drop to arrange your albums and make labels to create new groups. Picasa makes sure your pictures are always organised.

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Multi-media freeware


Audacity imageAudacity is free sound recording and editing software - useful for modifying sounds to make more 'fit for purpose'.

Photo Story

Photo Story imageWindows Photo Story 3 is a free download from Microsoft which can be used to create video stories from stills using panning and zooming and by adding music, narration, titles and backgrounds. The story saves as a .wmv file. An alternative to PowerPoint?

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Paint freeware

Tux Paint

Tux Paint imageTux Paint is a free drawing program designed for young children ages 3 and up. It has a simple, easy-to-use interface, fun sound effects, teacher or parent controls and an encouraging cartoon mascot who helps guide children as they use the program. Outputs are in standard file formats. imageFreeware alternative to MS Paint with many features of more expensive commercial applications.

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PC security freeware

The following freeware is offered for home users and stand alone computers only - you MUST check with your system administrator before doing anything to your school networks

Click here to download an MS Word file containing some guidance notes on how to protect your home computer


AVG imageIt is essential not only to have anti-virus software but to have it regularly updated - and this could mean weekly or even daily! AVG Free Edition is the well-known anti-virus protection tool. AVG Free is available free-of-charge to home users for the life of the product! Prompts to update are automatically received when you connect the Internet and the update process is really very simple. Note that if you install AVG, you must first uninstall any other anti-virus software - you should only have one anti-virus application running to avoid conflicts. AVG now also provide a free Anti-Spyware application

Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird

Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird imageOne way to minimise your risk with regard to viruses and spy-ware is to choose a web browser that, currently at least, is not targeted as often as Internet Explorer. Mozilla and the more recent Firefox browsers, work in much the same way as Internet Explorer and are free. Thunderbird is an alternative to Outlook Express.

Spybot - Search & Destroy

Spybot - Search & Destroy imageAny Windows machine that has been connected to the Internet will undoubtedly have been compromised by adware or spyware. Often these programs are just a nuisance but at worst they can be relaying your passwords to someone else. Spybot - Search & Destroy can detect and remove spyware of different kinds from your computer. Spyware is a relatively new kind of threat that common anti-virus applications do not yet cover


ZoneAlarm imageWindows XP has a firewall built in but you may wish to adopt the extra protection offered by Zone Alarm. It takes a bit of 'training' and when updated you have to remember to keep specifying 'Zone Alarm free edition' unless you wish to purchase 'Zone Alarm Pro'. Zone Labs is the essential security solution that protects you, your computer, and your personal information from destructive hackers, data thieves, malicious email attachments, worms, and other emerging Internet threats.

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Creating web pages resources including OpenSource and Freeware

Web pages can be created simply to run locally on your own computer - just like any other file. If you wish to post them to the internet you will need an Internet Service Provider (ISP) to allocate you some hosting space on one of their servers. You will be given a hostname, username and password to access this space.

Coffee Cup

Coffee Cup imageCoffeeCup Image Mapper has mouse-over HTML capability, includes a fully functional image map wizard, and enables users to attach parts of an image to different links.

Dial Solutions' HTML course

Dial Solutions' HTML course imageA web site developed as a means of sharing information that was completely independent of any particular manufacturer's software, or even the type of device involved in the process. The link section has many useful sites for anyone interested in web page design and construction

FTP Explorer

FTP Explorer imageYou can use an FTP client to transfer files to and from your computer to an FTP server. Most web servers offer FTP capability, so you can use FTP to easily transfer your web site files from your computer up to the web site. FTP Explorer is a File Transfer Protocol client that looks and acts very much like Windows Explorer, offering a fun and easy way to transfer files - it is Shareware but free for education.


HTML-Kit imageHTML-Kit is a full-featured, highly customisable and free development environment that can be used to create, edit, validate, preview and publish web pages and scripts.


Arachnophilia imageArachnophilia is an advanced Web site development environment, as well as a general programming tool.


Amaya imageAmaya is a Web editor, i.e. a tool used to create and update documents directly on the Web. Browsing features are seamlessly integrated with the editing and remote access features in a uniform environment. This follows the original vision of the Web as a space for collaboration and not just a one-way publishing medium.

W3C Markup Validation Service

W3C Markup Validation Service imageOnce you have completed your web page, you should always check that it conforms fully with web standards. The W3C Markup Validation Service is a free service that checks Web documents in formats like HTML and XHTML for conformance to W3C Recommendations and other standards.


Nominet imageNominet is the Internet registry for .uk domain names.In addition to maintaining the register of all .uk domain names Nominet also offer a range of associated services, including renewing registrations every two years and administering transfers of domain names between parties. The WHOIS service is used to find information about domain names ending in .uk. It is maintained by Nominet and contains information about domain names that are currently registered including: registrant's details, registration date and current status, registrant's agent and the name servers associated with the domain name.

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Useful web sites

BBC ReviseWise for KS2 and GCSE BiteSize Revision

BBC ReviseWise for KS2 and GCSE BiteSize Revision imageLearn, revise, ask a teacher, refine and improve your skills. Multimedia revision services with websites, t.v. programmes, books and CDroms - all are closely linked and can be used together or separately.

The Design and Making Centre (DMC)

The Design and Making Centre (DMC) imageThe Design and Making Centre (DMC) is a nationally recognised and respected centre that supports design and technology across all phases of education. It develops teaching resources to support creative and innovative approaches to teaching design and technology, which are supplemented by its range of high quality, best value materials and equipment.

The Institution of Structural Engineers

The Institution of Structural Engineers imageA project was commissioned by the Institution of Structural Engineers Educational Trust in 2004 to investigate how to promote Structural Engineering in schools. Bartlett Kendall Associates was appointed to undertake the project and explored the National Curriculum to identify areas within it that can be linked with Structural Engineering.

The British Nutrition Foundation

The British Nutrition Foundation imageThe Foundation promotes the nutritional well-being of society through the impartial interpretation and effective dissemination of scientifically based nutritional knowledge and advice. imagehe educational website from the Guardian.

West Sussex Grid for Learning

West Sussex Grid for Learning imageA very comprehensive site produced by a practising design and technology teacher and much used as an information source by KS3 and KS4 students.

Design and Tech.Com

Design and Tech.Com imageA very comprehensive site produced by a practising design and technology teacher and much used as an information source by KS3 and KS4 students.

SCHOOLS Building on Success

SCHOOLS Building on Success imageThe Schools Green Paper sets out for consultation, proposals to build on the past four years of education reform and achievement. It contains plans to embed those reforms, which have transformed primary education, and build on achievements to date to secure a step-change in secondary education as well.

A site to help pupils with the production of the design folder for the AQA GCSE Design and Technology: Resistant Materials Technology full course for the 2002 Examination.

Innovative research

Innovative research imageWarwick University Advanced Technology Centre are working on range of projects concerned with modern materials and processes such as biodegradable car parts made from elephant grass and biodegradable polymer.

Design & Technology

Design & Technology imageThe TES have a regular column on D&T which is updated every week.


Flying-Pig imageFlying-Pig is an excellent site for cardboard engineering. Designs for working cardboard automata can be printed out and made. The site also includes video clips of completed automata and some sound samples to accompany the movement.