Peace In Our Time Between OLPC and Intel?


Can't we all just get along?

ICT4Dev expert Cheri Voisine has just found an interesting paragraph in an Economic Times article about One Laptop Per Child's tumulus relationship with Intel Corporation:

Intel, which has its own low-cost laptops called Classmate PC, became an OLPC member in July this year. Consequently, a clear demarcation has been agreed upon by OLPC and Intel, according to which the XO laptop will cater to students in class I-VI while Intel’s Classmate PC will cater to students in the classes above that.
Could this be the way Nichols Negroponte plans to create peace with OLPC? Divide-up the educational laptop market in India with Intel.

If so, the general idea of technology transition does make sense. Young children in preschool to primary/elementary school would use XO laptops. Around middle school, they would transfer to Classmate PC, and by high school, they could be using a Asus Eee PC or even a "fully-featured" computer.

We need not to live by the "Tyranny of the Or". In fact, Intel vs. OLPC can be a beneficial laptop competition that produces better technology for everyone.

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Now that there are at least 3 main players in the low-cost "educational laptop" group, each vying for top spot, some form of compromise will need to be reached. I am curious about pricing for having 3 laptops per child per country though. If the child can keep each laptop, that would be quite expensive. However, if the laptops in these cases are "school property", this would make much more sense.

So it's three laptops per child?

Peace in our time... peace in our time....

For the life of me I can't remember the origin of that expression, but It sure sounds peacefull!

I dub this the "LOLPC stratuhgee"

"I has an OLPC."

"Noooo they be takin mah OLPC!!"

> [...] Consequently, a clear demarcation has been agreed upon [...]

In antitrust circles this would be called "collusion".

The Classmate is a completely different machine for a completely different market. Unfortunately, bureaucrats who have no concept of the technology they're buying into are responsible for the purchasing decision. The Classmate has neither the display technology, the power requirements, the networking ability, the customization, the software, nor the goals of the OLPC. Things that are seen as advantages of the Classmate over the OLPC (most notably: Windows) are not advantages at all. So long as the bureaucrats are calling the shots, however, the Classmate just might win (or more important, the OLPC might die) because the requirement that the laptops be given to the children, not just loaned or handed out in the classroom, will not be required by Intel. And when everyone abandons this "market" in a few years time and the OLPC is long dead and buried I hope the world recognizes these corporations for the monsters they are.

This is the obvious press release that we are soon going to read:

Intel abandons the Classmate PC and focuses 100% on getting the Diamondville into an Intel-powerted version of the XO laptop.

Intel and everyone else in OLPC will work also on future XO laptops that may also include laptops better suited for older children and adults. Every age-group in developping countries need the low power consumption, the sunlight readable screen, the DCON-CPU-Screen mechanism to be able to read ebooks for tens of hours on a battery, wireless mesh to make WiFi hotspots much more usable and to achieve much better productivity in all age-groups. Collaboration software over WiFi Mesh should also be made for company-level applications, for optimizing adults productivity. Intel and OLPC can maximise R&D on that.

Asus will also crank an XO screen onto the Eee, include in it a Diamondville and within 3-6 months there will be an Asus-made XO laptop.

So I expect Intel Diamondville and possibly Menlow to appear in low cost laptops soon, within 3-6 months probably. Even though ULV processor in the Classmate and the Eee is supposed to stand for Ultra Low Voltage, the ULV platform with conventional LCD screen still consumes 3 times as much power in full backlight mode and 10-20 times as much power in black and white DCON-CPU-Screen mode.

Especially ULV platforms really cost $400-650 in reality making it unrealistic to mass manufacture the Eee and the Classmate PC in their current state. So most probably that those large numbers of laptops that Intel and Asus are claiming they have sold, are to be for future Diamondville powered versions.

But I expect it will make much more sence for Intel and Asus to integrate the OLPC XO technologies, I am sure the other companies in the OLPC board will be happy to share all the technologies with Intel and Asus and the other way around.

Microsoft isn't let out, they will provide Windows XP Light that can be booted on an SD card in any XO computer. Which is just fine, so people in the third world can get accustomed with the OS that the developped world has been using for the past 15 years. Microsoft might give one SD card with Windows on it for free to every child. Why not, that's also some nice extra memory that will hopefully also be available on those SD cards (Microsoft, psst, provide a few more gigs of empty space on that card please).

Did you really mean to say:
If so, the general idea of technology transition does make sense. Young children in preschool to primary/elementary school would use XO laptops. Around middle school, they would transfer to Classmate PC, and by high school, they could be using a Asus Eee PC or even a "fully-featured" computer.

That implies the children will "outgrow" the XO and need to upgrade to something "better". I thought one of the advantages of Sugar was that is was expandable for different usages.

I was brushing my teeth after making a post about the OLPC in a Linux forum, and this occurred to me:

This is insultingly/ludicrously easy to do....

And the folks at MIT already KNOW this....they just don't want to talk about it, they just don't want to admit it, because then they would have to get outside of the comfortable role of "victim".

It is a little known fact, outside of academia, that probably 2/3 of U.S. colleges have an ongoing program wherein the students can "rent" a computer from the college and, at the end of their term in school, they can either give it back or buy it, for a little more money. The colleges are AWASH in money to put in the hands of the kids to rent the computers.... basically the colleges really do just give the computer they aren't the latest greatest, brushed aluminum lappys, but they do everything the student would need for college.

My little doofus country school, that graduated over 30 % each year going into science/technical/medicine thank you very much....Had.....but it was quashed by THE big government..STATE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION..... a similar program ....IN PLACE....until the "big government grant..powers that be killed it"...

Here is what we did....we went to the local patrons and said, hey.....what about we have a laptop in the school for every student, down to 5th grade, if I remember correctly.

We need "X" amount of money as a "donation"....we are then going to go to the local bank and use that to leverage a loan for the computers.The parents of each student then would "rent" the computer for the cost of the computer....over a year's the end of the year, they get the money back if they turn the computer back in....

It was going to cost the school LESS to do that than "implement multiple computer...."laboratories"...."....Each classroom would have a wireless router that would go to a printer that "automatically found" the wireless hookup, the students printed to it.... we already had a central server for "encyclopedias" etc....

The problem was, that we had to have "permission" from the State Department of Education...... and they diddled on that for YEARS....Why? Because if the school actually did anything like that ON IT'S OWN.....the State Dept. of Ed. lost.......POWER.....So.....what are the schools saddled with now? They are saddled with "computer labs"....that run Microsoft.... and cost the schools tens of thousands of dollars per year...

Welll things have changed somewhat...

Although the "country" is AWASH in money... the "finances" of education are much tighter now, not because of anything the "federal government" is NOT doing...but because each of the STATE...Depts of Ed...have overextended themselves with OTHER programs than their core which is the "financing" of elementary and high school system... is how the sales of THOUSANDS of OLPCs could be done, very simply....HIRE several "salespeople".....who know how to "find the right people"...Give each of them say, fifty, of these computers....The salesperson goes to SMALL TOWNS......they are the ones who can actually 'turn on a dime".....and goes to the local chamber of commerce, banks, etc....where the MONEY is.....

And proposes the same thing "with a twist"....

REMEMBER one thing......the U.S. is AWASH in money....really......They propose that they would like to meet with folks who would "float" a loan to the school system. That each student would "rent" the computer for a hundred bucks the computer to be returned or the money kept by the school, just as above...Again, use the servers that the school already has for printing etc.

When the sales person exits the building he or she leaves the computer with the "money people" or the school.... for them to play with..Let's say, ten sales people....each can visit at least one "system/bank/etc" per two days and propose the deal.... start January 08....that is about 90 academic days...
90 divided by two is 45
45 times 10 is 450

figure that half actually do it....That is 225. Let us say that they go to 100 students per school, that is 22,500 computers by spring, the program starting either summer 08 or fall 08 in the school itself...A local LION'S club, or a SHRINER group, or an ELKs, or an Eagle's could finance that many computers..... 100 per school, times 100 is 10,000 bucks, the club puts up 20 percent..... that is 2,000 bucks...

The banks give the loan at 1 percent...get their name in the newspaper... the parents vote a bond issue for three years.. at the end of that time.. the school pays the rest of it off ...with SAVED MONEY.... this so hard to understand?

I guess it is...for people who get their money from big government grants and like to argue on forums, knowing that they individually are never going to be held responsible for any of the end of the day....the month...the year....the posts just get lost at the bottom of the page....The "club" that I am in raises 20,000 bucks a year just for helping developmentally disabled people with dental care..and WE ARE SMALL....the money is there...

But, unfortunately for people who are used to working in the system of "BIG GOVERNMENT GRANTS"... it is NOT a government program....It's not the wonderful big government holding people's hands and wiping their noses....It is very simply people helping people... anathema to the "big government way of thinking"...What people HEAR about is the big government debt, the big government spending, the big government this the big government that...but the reality is....that the U.S. is AWASH in money..

And the people through whose hands this money flows... actually DO things... with their money...As opposed to people who think in terms of "government grants"... small town USA can buy TENS OF THOUSANDS of these things.... ok...add five bucks to each one... and then spend THAT money on providing OLPCs for people that don't have one...Let the money that the private people, and private businesses, and private clubs are AWASH in..LEVERAGE the money of big government... to .provide the financial base to do this...

But no...THAT is not the way of the "big government grant" thinking..This MIGHT..actually..WORK...people would have to get out of their "victim box"... to which they have become so comfortable for the last fourty years...No... this will be a sad story of "big government grants" as usual...While.... behind the scenes... Intel and Microsoft will just SPEND the money to swamp what is the best idea since the abacus.

The "talking head" committees at MIT will have to have at least two years of conferences... Each INDIVIDUAL on those committees will have to consider whether they will lose any or all of their "victim" status in the heirarchy of academia. They will have to make sure that there are sufficient "checks and balances"...They will have to consider the "minutia" of the proposals..They will have to consider the IMPACT(how I detest that word) on their "credentials" of the possiblity that.. a .. nasty... SALESPERSON.... just "might" get the thing done!

Academe couldn't have THAT! the GRUBBY MONEY OF COMMERCE..... might soil the reputation of the academic .. After all, it's supposeded to be the INTELLIGENT people who "get it done"... or the world of the academic, it doesn't really matter which way things go... it's all relative anyway.. sigh..


I just watched the piece on CBS 60 minutes.... about OLPC.. there was NO MENTION of Linux.....There was PLENTY of talk about the big bad shibbolith of Intel....any newscaster can safely bash Intel...THERE WAS NO MENTION of Microsoft.... except in a rather vague "other" forces way.....What a load of @##$%....WHY was there NO mention the word LINUX..?

I really have no idea...but...I can hazard a guess! If there was actual MENTION of ...Linux.... well... Linux. might, actually, become POPULAR! WHAT AN IDEA...WHAT A STROKE OF NON-GENIUS... !

If there is NO MENTION of Linux...then...we get to keep our victim status... but... we put on a good charade...Watch out for the man behind the curtain...Would...."Linux" ....suddenly have to deal with the ACTUALITY of what "Linux" bemoans that it wants..?

Or....does...Linux....really....want to remain...a victim...? I don't know... and this post won't make any difference...Because things won't change...Because Microsoft and Intel are going to SQUASH THIS LIKE A BUG....with.....MONEY....THEY are not spending endless hours in "meetings"....THEY are not worried about their "appearance or lasting reputation" in the "heirarchy of academe"....THEY.... are going to make sure that the bottom line is BLACK... not red....

In academe...if the University's bottom line is what? After all..'s not THEIR' money...Tell ya what want somebody to DO this...I'll do it... What a ludicrous...preventable....waste...



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