Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

OLPC days numbered as recession bites

Filed under
OLPC

The One Laptop Per Child organisation (OLPC), looks to have conceded that its "$100 laptop" has been a gigantic lapflop as the global recession bites deeper. Recent reports indicate that OLPC has suffered a massive sales downturn of its XO computer, resulting in equally massive staff layoffs and budget slashing.

The brainchild of MIT media lab's Professor Nicholas Negroponte, the aim of the OLPC was to deliver cheap robust laptops to the underprivileged children of the world. The novel XO laptop, despite being closer to US$200 than the original stated goal of US$100, received widespread acclaim from many quarters (and criticism from others) when it was finally released in 2007.

According to a report on the Telecom TV website, the Christmas holiday period has been a disaster for OLPC with just 12,600 XO laptops sold, compared to 185,000 the year before.

To make matters worse, cash strapped governments of impoverished nations which had been persuaded by OLPC to buy XO laptops are now reneging on their commitments.

Aside from the global recesssion, the rise of the cheap netbook phenomenon, led by Asus, Acer, HP and a number of other big names, has commoditised the small computer space and made the relatively underpowered XO seem expensive rather than cheap.

More Here




More in Tux Machines

Knoppix 7.4.1 Updated with New Linux Kernel and Multiple Fixes – Gallery

Knoppix 7.4.1, a bootable Live CD/DVD made up from the most popular and useful free and open source applications, backed up by automatic hardware detection and support for a large number of hardware devices, has been released and is now available for download. Read more

Hackable $39 Allwinner A20 SBC packs HDMI and GbE

The $39 hackable “pcDuino3Nano” SBC runs Android or Ubuntu on a dual-core Allwinner A20 SoC, and offers GbE, HDMI, and 3x USB, plus Arduino-style expansion. It appears we have a new price/performance standout in the open source single board computer game. Longmont, Colorado based LinkSprite Technologies, which hosts the open source project for Allwinner-based pcDuino SBCs, has just announced a $39 board with a set of features that would typically go for about $60. The pcDuino3Nano offers the same dual-core, 1GHz Cortex-A7 system-on-chip and all the other features of the $77 pcDuino3 SBC except for the LVDS interface, I2S stereo digital audio output, and built-in WiFi. It also adds a second USB 2.0 host port, and upgrades the LAN interface from 10/100 to 10/100/1000 Ethernet. Read more

New Video Series Teaches Kids About Linux

Growing up in rural Utah, brothers Jared and JR Neilsen spent their free time recording videos that starred a cast of homemade puppets. As adults they've reconvened to create their own web series,Hello World, which aims to teach kids about computer science. The latest segment in the series, “Superusers: The Legendary GNU/Linux Show,” is focused on teaching Linux fundamentals. Puppets Adelie the penguin and Aramis the gnu lead kids on operating system adventures to teach topics such as how to use commands, write basic shell scripts, and find a file or directory. “We wanted to do something creative and fun, merging the adventures of our youth with our current interests in computer science,” Jared Neilsen said, via email. “It's a pastiche of things we love: puppets, surreal British comedy, philosophy, music, superhero cartoons, and Linux, of course.” Read more

Google's Chrome Strategy Heads in New Directions, Draws Linux Comparisons

Google's Chrome browser and Chrome OS operating system are grabbing headlines this week for several reasons. As Susan reported here, Matt Hartley said recently, 'Anyone who believes Google isn't making a play for desktop users isn't paying attention.' Hartley favors putting Linux in front of a lot of potential Chrome OS users, and says "I consider ChromeOS to be a forked operating system that uses the Linux kernel under the hood." Read more