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Microsoft, OLPC and Peru will use the South American nation as a testing ground for the Windows-powered OLPC

Microsoft and the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) organization announced Peru will be the first nation to receive low-cost XO laptops with Microsoft Windows instead of Linux.  Peru's Ministry of Education will receive the laptops, and then will distribute them to school age children throughout the nation.

"The specific scale and locations of the pilot, which will take place over the next nine months, are still being determined according to the specific needs of the government and rural schools in Peru," a Microsoft spokesperson told DailyTech in a statement.

In May, Microsoft announced it was working to help port its Windows XP operating system to the popular OLPC devices.  A partnership announcement between Microsoft and OLPC came later in the month, when it became official Windows-based OLPCs would be available.

Linux was the main operating system used on the OLPC, but a number of nations came forward and said they were only interested in the popular device if it had Windows.  Microsoft also has been using Windows on the Intel Classmate PC, which also has had success in South America, including Brazil.  Several countries, including Egypt, said it wanted students to have experience with Windows because it remains the most dominant OS used throughout the world.

The popular green laptop will be used in schools throughout Peru to help students learn about technology and will include the Microsoft Student Innovation Suite, a software package that includes Microsoft Office 2003 and the Learning Essentials 1.0.  

The future of Linux on the OLPC XO is still unknown, but there is some speculation that Linux could be dropped if demand for Windows-based machines is high enough.  Microsoft and OLPC will launch short-term pilot programs with Windows-based XOs in the future.



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RE: Why?
By foolsgambit11 on 9/17/2008 3:33:58 PM , Rating: 2
But your analogy fails in this instance, since children who learn to use a computer with Linux would most likely be more comfortable getting accustomed to a computer with Windows on it.

The problem is not that Microsoft is making money. The issue people have, it would seem to me, is that they are making money based not on the fact that they have a superior product, but that they have the product with the most market share. It's nothing intrinsic about Windows that has made these governments demand Windows on the OLPC; it's the fact that Windows XP is currently used everywhere already.

Ironically, since the layout of Windows Vista (and assumedly, Windows 7) is different than XP, learning XP doesn't actually directly prepare a 7 year old for a job when he's 17 (that will almost certainly use a different OS) any more than a Linux distro or OS X would.


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