July 13, 2007

Intel Makes Peace with One Laptop Per Child

Appears Intel has had a change of heart and will now join the board of OLPC and contribute funding. That's a good thing and definitely nicer than the prior stance it had which seemed to put corporate profit ahead of public good. The OLPC machine is a technological miracle in how it manages power and all it takes is one visit to backcountry of Nigeria to understand significance of power (or absence of).

Intel Joins '$100 Laptop' Project
Associated Press
July 13, 2007 12:14 p.m.

BOSTON -- The nonprofit that aims to seed the developing world with inexpensive laptop computers for schoolchildren has made peace with Intel Corp., the project's most powerful rival.

The One Laptop Per Child program and Intel said Friday that the chip maker would join the board of the nonprofit and contribute funding.

The nonprofit effort -- known as the "$100 laptop" because of the low price it hopes to reach with mass production -- has been trying to line up governments in several countries to buy the machines, which for now cost $175.

But Intel has been an obstacle. Its chairman, Craig Barrett, derided the "XO" machine from One Laptop Per Child as a mere "gadget." And Intel recently began selling its own child-focused Classmate PC, which is a more conventional machine than the radically rethought XO computers.

The Classmate costs around $225, and Intel expects that to fall near $200 this year. Intel has deals in Pakistan, Brazil, Mexico and Nigeria, spokeswoman Agnes Kwan said.

Under their new partnership, Intel and One Laptop Per Child might seek ways to package their computers together for overseas governments. For example, Intel's Classmate, which has to be plugged in, might be an option for urban settings, while the XO laptops, which use very little power and can be mechanically recharged by hand, could go into rural districts.

rest of article

Posted by staff at July 13, 2007 11:11 AM