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Posted by on Jan 31, 2009 in At TMV | 0 comments

The $10 Laptop

The Times of India:

A $10 laptop (Rs 500) prototype, with 2 GB RAM capacity, would be on display in Tirupati on February 3 when the National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Techology is launched.

The $10 laptop project, first reported in TOI three years ago, has come as an answer to the $100 laptop of MIT’s Nicholas Negroponte that he was trying to hardsell to India. The $10 laptop has come out of the drawing board stage due to work put in by students of Vellore Institute of Technology, scientists in Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, IIT-Madras and involvement of PSUs like Semiconductor Complex. “At this stage, the price is working out to be $20 but with mass production it is bound to come down,” R P Agarwal, secretary, higher education said.

Apart from questioning the technology of $100 laptops, the main reason for HRD ministry’s resistance to Negroponte’s One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project was the high and the hidden cost that worked out to be $200.

Negroponte still gets the credit in my mind. Without his initiative there would be no National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology. After the jump, David Pogue’s 2007 video rave review of OLPC’s XO. Its technological innovations are dazzling.

MORE ON OLPC: Here A BBC reporter tells the tale of bringing his son, Rufus, an XO. Here 60 Minutes on Negroponte’s effort. Here the Wall Street Journal’s Steve Stecklow says competition will achieve Negroponte’s larger goal, even as it hurts the XO’s chances of success.