To great fanfare, Microsoft has announced that it is deploying XO laptops in Quetame and Chia, Colombia, with the Windows XP operations system, what I like to call "Windows XO", thereby claiming that Colombia signs up for OLPC laptops with Windows.
This bragging certainly has pissed off Greg Dek, a Red Hat Community Architect working on OLPC. Greg declares that Microsoft bought 10,000 XO laptops in May and can do with them whatever they want, including trumpeted up pilots of Windows XO, and that OLPC builds with Linux and Sugar, and always will.
Now to an extent I can relate to Greg's frustration over Microsoft and One Laptop Per Child. He is right when he says:
[E]very time Microsoft farts in the general direction of OLPC, somebody prints a headline like "Microsoft cloud hovers over the OLPC project" that gets read by, oh, a bazillion people. And then we get another rousing chorus of the "OLPC sold out to Microsoft" song.The mere whiff of XP flatulence near the XO laptop sends many into a dizzy. The great Peru Windows XO deployment? Apparently only 50 XO laptops. At the same time, its not like OLPC has tried very hard to resist Windows XO.
So with all due respect, Greg, while I know that OLPC is still committed to the ideals of FLOSS, its not trying all that hard to disprove that "OLPC sold out to Microsoft". Maybe OLPC could take the advice of Anonymous:
Prevent anyone making modifications to the laptop software from using the OLPC name. Then Microsoft is not freely allowed to make an OLPC trial, they have to rename it first.At least then the headlines would read, "Colombia signs up for Windows XO laptops" and there would be some semblance that OLPC isn't a "Microsoft stooge".