$100 Linux Laptop To Debut With 500 Thai Children (1 Million in Thailand Only by 2007)

By Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Friday, August 18, 2006

$100 laptopThe ambitious One Laptop Per Child program, which began at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Media Lab, to provide low-cost laptop computers to poor children around the world is about to take a big step forward.

More than 500 children in Thailand are expected to receive the machines in October and November for quality testing and debugging.

The One Laptop Per Child program hopes to deploy 5 million to 7 million machines in Thailand, Nigeria, Brazil and Argentina in 2007.

Thailand’s government is expected to buy 1 million in the first year. They will provide their children with free laptops instead of books, which can anyone be read from laptop.

The machines will use Linux operating system, include flash memory instead of hard drive and run on electricity created by a hand or foot pump. Can you imagine the tremendous market loss for Microsoft? Do you think these children will consider Microsoft in future? This is probably the single best news for Linux in a long time.

Walter Bender, a Media Lab founder who serves as One Laptop Per Child’s president of software and content, said the organization still is talking with Indian officials and non-governmental agencies.

“While India will not be part of the year-one launch, with 25 percent of the world’s children, it is within our mission to work with India down the road,” Bender said in an e-mail this week. Link

My only concern is long term effects of using these laptops by children on their eyes. The lcd screen is pretty small for comfort.

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