Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Rwanda joins low-cost laptop project

Filed under
Misc

Rwanda is the eighth developing country to join the One Laptop Per Child initiative aimed at giving away inexpensive computers to all young students.

The nonprofit project said Wednesday it will provide Rwanda with initial test laptops and technical support at no cost within a few days.

Starting late this summer, Rwanda will begin receiving hundreds of thousands of computers at an initial cost of about $150 apiece. The government will cover the cost, with a goal of providing one laptop per child to all primary school children within five years.

The laptops come as part of an agreement reached during a meeting Tuesday between the central African nation's president, Paul Kagame, and Nicholas Negroponte, who launched the initiative at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab two years ago.

Similar agreements have been reached with Argentina, Brazil, Libya, Nigeria, Pakistan, Thailand and Uruguay. Organizers of the Cambridge, Mass.-based project are in talks with several other countries.

Though initial units now cost about $150, the computer developed by the project has been known as the $100 laptop because of the ultra-low cost its creators eventually hope to achieve through mass production.

MIT formed One Laptop as a nonprofit organization to oversee the project, which seeks to improve education by giving children brightly colored computers that have wireless capabilities and sport a hand-pulled mechanism for charging batteries.

The green-and-white computers, which go by the name XO, feature several design elements designed to keep their prices low. The computers will use the free Linux operating system, flash memory instead of a hard drive and a microprocessor requiring minimal power. The user interface has been designed to be intuitive for children.

The machines are being made by Quanta Computer Inc., and countries will get versions specific to their own languages. Governments or donors will buy the laptops for children to own, along with associated server equipment for their schools.

© 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

More in Tux Machines

IsoHunt releases roll-your-own Pirate Bay

Open Source Meritocracy Is More Than a Joke

In January 2014, Github removed the rug in its office's waiting room in response to criticism of its slogan, "United Meritocracy of Github." Since then, the criticism of the idea of meritocracy has spread in free software circles. "Meritocracy is a joke," has become a slogan seen on T-shirts and constantly proclaimed, especially by feminists. Such commentary is true — so far as it goes, but it ignores the potential benefits of meritocracy as an ethos. Anyone who bothers to look can see that meritocracy is more of an ideal than a standard practice in free software. The idea that people should be valued for their contributions may seem to be a way to promote fairness, but the practice is frequently more complicated. Read more Also: Unmanagement and unleadership

Linux Kernel Developers Consider Live Kernel Patching Solution

kPatch and kGraph may soon enable live kernel updates on all Linux distributions, making it possible to apply security and other patches on the open source operating system without rebooting. Read more

A real-time editing tool for Wikipedia

Wikipedia is one of the most frequently visited websites in the world. The vast online encyclopedia, editable by anyone, has become the go-to source for general information on any subject. However, the "crowdsourcing" used by Wikipedia opens their doors to spin and whitewashing–edits that may be less than factual in nature. To help journalists, citizens, and activists track these edits, TWG (The Working Group) partnered with Metro News and the Center for Investigative Reporting to build WikiWash. Read more