Here’s something to brighten a dark winter day. Nicholas Negroponte and other MIT faculty members have been working on a project to supply a laptop to each and every child in the developing world. Their goal is to spread access to knowledge and modern forms of education worldwide.

The “One Laptop per Child” (OLPC) project won’t be distributing obsolete business computers or cheap knock-offs. These computers are manufactured from the ground up by a Taiwanese based company using hardware from such major companies as Dell, Compaq, Gateway, Apple, and HP. They are built using free software, have networking capabilities, use low cost and rugged materials plus operate with a hand-cranked power supply to achieve both reliability and energy independence.

Already, one thousand working prototypes have been delivered and full scale production is scheduled to begin in mid-2007. The laptops will be sold to governments and issued by local schools. Pricing is expected to start at around US$135-140 and the goal is to reach the US$100 mark in 2008.

For more information browse their web page at: http://www.laptop.org/

Steve Smith & Christine Johnson

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