The first real-life images of MIT's $100 laptop have surfaced on flickr.
In its transition from mockup to working
prototype, the laptop appears to have lost its distinctive hand crank which was
supposed to be used to provide additional run time in a pinch – the basket
handle remains, however. Included on the prototypes are what appear to be
swiveling “ears” which in the down position protect the USB, headphone and microphone
ports from dust and dirt (or whatever kids manage to drag their laptops through
during the day). Both the screen and the keyboard appear to be a bit on the small
side, but children shouldn’t have many problems placing their tiny digits on
the keys or deciphering what’s on the screen.
Bill Gates has lambasted the device due
to its lack of a hard drive in recent months in an effort to promote his
company’s own UMPC efforts. Gates also barked at the $100 laptop’s small screen
size – interesting considering that UMPC devices have screens ranging from 4.5” to 7” and are hundreds (and thousands) of
dollars more expensive.
There are also other efforts to spread technology to
underdeveloped nations including Microsoft’s FlexGo and
Intel’s Community PC.
On a side note, bonus points for whoever can point out what’s
wrong with this
quote: I know what's wrong: It's sitting on a boardroom table.
Isn't this to be for poor countries where they don't use boardroom tables they live in shacks, huts, tents and desert sand and mud, with dust storms. And earthquakes that shake your things a lot.
quote: The surface should be WHITE to reflect away as much of the sun's heat energy as possible (to avoid overheating and need for cooling energy). Black would absorb lots of heat, and other colours do also to some extend. Maybe it could have a foldout solar panel.
quote: Also there is no need for trendy design, nice feel type of plastic (typically costs more) or dayglo colours (well, you couldn't lose it in the dark).
quote: They could save money by doing away with the battery found in conventional laptops (because it degrades and needs replacing) and batteries do not work well in HOT non-air-conditioned climate.
Just hook up the village power - 12v alternator driven off a diesel truck engine and you can work from that. My desktop machines don't have batteries so it's not an essential feature is it?
You could replace the hard drive with some flash memory and embed linux into it. You don't need a cdrom because you can download your ebooks/learning software/pirate music across a lan. It only needs to be 10/100 not WIMAX or wifi as has been suggested by some.
quote: I also strongly disagree with the "one laptop per child" idea. NO!!!! What a waste of global natural resources - billions of computers and they will all depreciate. In non-usa countries there is the novel concept of SHARING. eg instead of buying one each and only using it sometimes, you and your BROTHER take turns. The other half of the day you probably have to gather crops or carry water. A laptop each is a waste of money that could buy these people CLOTHES and FOOD.