So the OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) program finally launched!
Yay for Nick Negroponte!
For two weeks they are running a “give one, get one” program. The OLPC machine isn’t available to consumers, just developing nations – but for these two weeks, if you order one for a developing nation, you can also buy one for yourself at the same time.
They didn’t hit their mark of the “$100 Laptop”, ended up coming in at $200, which is still damn cheap for a laptop. And I would think costs would come down over time.
While not at slick as the $400 Asus Eee PC, the OLPC XO machine is still pretty nifty.
It might seem silly to some people to supply laptops to children in developing nations, but think about it this way: $200 would only buy, what, 10 schoolbooks? You could easily put 100 books on a laptop. There are thousands of public-domain and otherwise free texts that could be used.
Not only that, but this will be the first step in connecting them with the world.
I’m not saying it’s a panacea or anything, but it certainly couldn’t hurt to give some education technology resources.
So I put in an order, and bought one for me and one for a child somewhere.
Hopefully they’ll make good use of it.