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This, too, shall pass, or: Things to remember when reading news about OLPC

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OLPC

It’s easy to get caught up in the doom and gloom over OLPC’s future. But keep things in perspective: they aren’t as bad as they seem.

To the developers at OLPC, and the tireless volunteer community contributors unsettled by Nicholas’ plans — remember that no matter what happens, your work has not been for naught. Far from it. You brought the smiles to children’s faces in Escuela No. 109 in Florida, Uruguay. Your work astounded me with the results, after little more than half a year, in the mountains of Arahuay, Peru. Bryan Berry’s team is kicking ass on establishing a pilot in Nepal because of your work. And if you haven’t read the linked articles yet, now’s the time. Nothing can take away the real, palpable impact you’ve already had on children’s lives.

To those on the outside and looking in: remember that, though he takes the liberty of speaking in its name, Nicholas is not OLPC. OLPC is Walter Bender, Scott Ananian, Chris Ball, Mitch Bradley, Mark Foster, Marco Pesenti Gritti, Mary Lou Jepsen, Andres Salomon, Richard Smith, Michael Stone, Tomeu Vizoso, John Watlington, Dan Williams, Dave Woodhouse, and the community, and the rest of the people who worked days, nights, and weekends without end, fighting like warrior poets to make this project work. Nicholas wasn’t the one who built the hardware, or wrote the software, or deployed the machines. Nicholas talks, but these people’s work walks.

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