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Even though the price of the OLPC has risen to $175, it is still cheaper than alternative projects

The One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) group recently announced that its low-cost laptop would be raised from $100 up to $175, but the group is still confident that enough orders will be placed for the group to begin mass production before September.  The goal behind the project is planning to offer inexpensive notebook computers to school children in developing nations.

Even with an increased price tag of $175, the notebooks are still much cheaper than what the computer industry has traditionally offered.  OLPC founder Nicholas Negroponte previously stated the price of the notebooks could drop almost 25 percent per year.

A number of factors have caused the increase in the laptop, including design costs and a raise in price of nickel.

"We are perhaps at the most critical stage of OLPC's life," said Negroponte.

Using a modified version of Red hat Linux, the Quanta Computer-built laptop offers users an interface that has pictographic icons instead of traditional windows and folders.

OLPC reportedly already has 2.5 million unit orders, but has to reach the 3 million order mark before May 30, or the group's hardware suppliers will not have enough time to get parts ready, according to Negroponte.

OLPC officials said on Thursday that it may offer laptops to U.S. schools, even though the group previously said that the laptops would be for foreign children only.


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175$ becomes the price
By nerdye on 4/29/2007 1:03:35 AM , Rating: -1
175$ may become the price, but it still seems relatively reasonable, if, and only if, the olpc turns out to be a good learning tool for children of developing countries. The ds is 130$, so a quality learning tool being 45$ more seems ok to me. Only if America could buy these for struggling third world countries with our tax money rather than push democratic rule on 3rd world countries in the middle of a civil war to only gain profits on oil that only the richest percentage of the America sees a benefit from as countless people die for it, yet thats of course, wishful thinking.




RE: 175$ becomes the price
By Oobu on 4/29/07, Rating: 0
RE: 175$ becomes the price
By nah on 4/29/07, Rating: -1
RE: 175$ becomes the price
By masher2 (blog) on 4/29/2007 10:45:11 AM , Rating: 5
> "Americans spend 100 billion USD on gambling...yet the US spends less than 14 billion in aid to other countries."

According to USAID.gov, total foreign assistance in 2005 was $34.360 Billion. That's over twice the amount of the next highest country, and includes only government sums. The figure is dwarfed by private contributions from US citizens, corporations, and institutions, which annually give over 3.5 times as much as does the federal government.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By nah on 4/29/07, Rating: -1
RE: 175$ becomes the price
By creathir on 4/29/2007 3:17:19 PM , Rating: 5
What does is matter that we spend $100 billion in gambling? So we gamble. Your point? We can spend our money how we like to. We are not REQUIRED to be the world's charity.
The fact that we give more than any other nation on the planet is a testament to how big our hearts are, yet it is just not enough, is it? What would be enough for you? 25% of our GDP? 50%? 75%? What do you want exactly? Why not talk about the utter WASTE in the rest of the world? This really aggravates me when we are chastised for giving, giving, and giving, yet it is never enough.
Why don't you step up if you are so concerned about it, instead of berating us. You certainly have managed to find a way to post on the Internet, a luxury in many societies. You could have spent the money on that computer of yours by donating to a charity.

The point is, it is your money. You spend it like you want to. It is the gambler's money. He spends it as he wants to. It also, is the philanthropists money, and they spend it like they want to.

Stop whining.

- Creathir


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By Oobu on 4/29/2007 5:14:01 PM , Rating: 2
Well said, thank you.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By nah on 4/30/2007 4:29:36 AM , Rating: 2
I do spend money on charity--as a rule of thumb--10 % of my income is spent on charity--and, yes, i have donated the last five computers that i have possessed to charity--

It's not a question of whining but about making a point--as an economist i understand the basics of aid--aid has been described by critics like Susan George as a 60 bn jetsetting industry. In her words too--never before have so many suffered for the works of so few--a quote which she used to decry the tremendous amount of waste in the aid industry--if 75 % of money which is given in aid is gone to the donor country, i fail to see how aid can be relevant--this is why organisations like the grameen bank have won the Nobel--the greatest aid to poverty has come rom the Third World itself--in the form of micro-credit


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By masher2 (blog) on 4/29/2007 3:24:35 PM , Rating: 5
> "you make no comment about the fact that money is spent on gambling or porn..."

So you feel people shouldn't have the right to spend their own money on whatever they choose? Its even more hypocritical when I'm confident you yourself spend the majority of your own income on yourself, rather than donating it to charitable causes.

> "...or the fact that 2/3rds of aid is tied aid"

2/3 of government aid...or less than 1/5 of total US aid. And I still fail to see the relevance here. If the US government writes a check for someone to buy food with, is it too much to ask that they require the food to be bought from US farmers? You make it sound as if tied aid shouldn't be counted at all. Remember, the dollars may eventually come back to the US...but the products and services purchased with those dollars do not.

> "or the fact that private financial contributions are mostly temporary..."

A statement which is both incorrect and irrelevant. Aid is aid, period. Per capita and in gross totals, US private donations are the largest in the world. Whether that aid is spent on "temporary" food and shelter to keep a person alive after a natural disaster, or "permanent" aid such as building hospitals or water-processing plants, matters not at all.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By nah on 4/30/2007 4:33:09 AM , Rating: 1
I do spend money on charity--as a rule of thumb--10 % of my income is spent on charity--and, yes, i have donated the last five computers that i have possessed to charity--if you think that money spent on porn is Ok--well ,wonderful

It's not a question of whining but about making a point--as an economist i understand the basics of aid--aid has been described by critics like Susan George as a 60 bn jetsetting industry. In her words too--never before have so many suffered for the works of so few--a quote which she used to decry the tremendous amount of waste in the aid industry--if 75 % of money which is given in aid is gone to the donor country, i fail to see how aid can be relevant--this is why organisations like the grameen bank have won the Nobel--the greatest aid to poverty has come from the Third World itself--in the form of micro-credit


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By othercents on 4/30/2007 1:48:23 PM , Rating: 2
You give someone food you feed them for a day. You teach someone how to farm you feed them for a lifetime.

No matter how much money and food we throw at the problem the problem is still going to exist until someone teaches them how to take care of themselves. If you had a friend that was in need of food, clothing, and a place to stay you would probably invite them over to your place, but if after 6 months they are still in the same situation or worse what would you do? Give them more money and hope it fixes the problem?

Granted there are extenuating circumstances that aid is needed for the short term, but we should also be looking at the long term solutions otherwise we might be paying to feed our friend for a lifetime.

Other


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By Talcite on 4/29/07, Rating: 0
RE: 175$ becomes the price
By masher2 (blog) on 4/29/2007 3:48:03 PM , Rating: 5
> "Ahh yes, the US gave alot of money, but what percentage of the US GDP is that figure?"

If you consider private donations, the US leads the world, both in total dollars and as a percentage of GDP. If you consider public donations only, the US is still first in total dollars, but ranks 20th as a percentage of GDP.

However, that figure doesn't reflect spendings such as the US's financing the lion's share of the UN, the World Bank, and similar organizations. It also doesn't reflect how those aid dollars are spent. France's foreign aid, for instance, is spent almost totally as a lever to advance French foreign interests, or to promote sales of French arms or other products overseas.

Furthermore, it doesn't reflect the disastrous effects of European agricultural subsidies, upon which the EU spends over $40B/year, subsidies which countless organizations have identified as exerting a crushing cost on developing nations, by preventing their primary exports from competing fairly within the EU.

Finally, I have to point out an inherent flaw in your reasoning, that the donating of huge sums to money to corrupt regimes in third-world nations is a moral imperative...or even that its to be desired. Quite often the results of such aid are more negative than positive, and appears to be given more to ease the "white guilt" of the donor rather than to perform any useful purpose. The costs of denying a regime MFN trading status due to human rights violations, or enforcing a trade embargo are never counted as 'foreign aid', but quite often they are far more valuable to the people of that nation than simply writing a check and hoping some small portion of it actually makes it way into their hands.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By mthambi on 4/29/2007 11:26:22 AM , Rating: 1
I bet that figure includes billions in military aid to Israel, Egypt etc. and reconstruction funding (aka subsidies for Haliburton) for Iraq, Afghanistan etc.

I compiled the per-capita non-military govt aid some years back. The US came at the bottom of the top 20 wealthy countries in the world. (It makes no sense to compare absolute aid. Is it surprising that say Denmark gives a smaller absolute amount of aid than the US?).


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By awer26 on 4/29/2007 1:51:08 PM , Rating: 2
Absolute aid given is just as important as the % given. No, Denmark shouldn't have to give as much as us, and we should definitely give more than them, but we shouldn't have to match percentages. If a person with $1,000,000 gives $500,000 in charity I think it is better than a poor person with $10 gives $5. Recouping the $5 is going to be much easier than the $500k (yes that's an extreme example, but its the same principle)


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By mthambi on 4/30/2007 11:15:58 AM , Rating: 2
I don't think you understand. The comparison is not between a person with $1000000 giving $500000 and one with $10 giving $5. It is between 100 people having $10 each ($1000) giving $500 vs 1 person having $10 giving $5.

To look at it another way, I am sure EU gives a lot more in absolute aid than the US.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By nerdye on 4/29/07, Rating: -1
RE: 175$ becomes the price
By Oobu on 4/29/07, Rating: 0
RE: 175$ becomes the price
By Samus on 4/29/2007 6:32:05 AM , Rating: 3
dude, didn't you get the memo? you don't need to bother axing people anymore...

NOBODY. LIKES. BUSH.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By ss284 on 4/29/2007 2:01:53 PM , Rating: 2
As a healthy young male I would have to object to your statement. I like bush. I would even go as far as to say I LOVE bush.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By creathir on 4/29/2007 3:25:03 PM , Rating: 4
I like Bush. There are some things as a conservative I do not agree with him, but I like Bush.

It could have been worse...
Gore...
*shudders*
or even worse...
Kerry...
*shudders even more*

But, to counter your statement... I like Bush.

Also, it is aSKing, not axing.

Axing is the action used when using an ax, though I would describe it at hacking, or some other verb.

"axing" people would be like cutting them apart.

ASKing is the act of putting a question forth to people.

There is a HUGE difference between the words ask and ax. Just because it is popular in the urban subculture to misuse the phrases, does not make it acceptable in normal everyday language for the rest of the world.

- Creathir


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By dandres87 on 4/29/2007 1:39:26 AM , Rating: 4
Presidents are worthless, merely icons, criticizing "their policies" is pointless. Politicians are puppets for business', such as the ones developing the OLPC. They get positive publicity and politicians get bad publicity when its all business fault. Yes there has been better icon's than Bush, but really, is an icon really worth spending your time criticizing?


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By themadmilkman on 4/29/2007 5:27:06 AM , Rating: 3
The President controls 1/3 of the Government's balance of power. He IS the Executive Branch. Whether he is a mere 'icon,' as you say, or not, his policies can and should be criticized since they play an important role in the development of the country as a whole.

If you really want to argue something, argue how the executive branch has slowly eroded the control that Congress was originally intended to have over the affairs of the country. The Founding Fathers created a government with a relatively weak presidency, because they feared placing too much power into the hands of one man. Or argue that the Supreme Court shouldn't have the powers that it has been granted, how Marbury v. Madison was a poor decision. But please, argue something RATIONALE, not some cockeyed conspiracy theory about how big business controls the government from behind their desks.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By Spoelie on 4/29/2007 10:48:12 AM , Rating: 2
And those that like punctuation instead of reading something that sounds like gibberish if only in the form of a continuous stream of fanciful words drenched in political correctness and written with little or no effort to sound even slightly cohesive but only work on people's guilt to get a higher rating questionmark


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By joust on 4/29/2007 3:53:39 AM , Rating: 2
Your criticism of US policy seems problematic in a quite a few ways.

First off, you ignore the possibility that other countries act in their own interests. That the US acts in it's own interests as well is no travesty here.

Secondly, presumably you're referring to Iraq here with all this talk of civil wars and oil. You infer, perhaps misguidedly, that the US went to war for oil. You seem to miss very real possibility that the US chose to forsake oil to install a democracy.

Let's assume oil is the main driver behind our policy. We will choose the options that will get us the most oil from as many countries as possible for the least cost.

Had the US truly been so keen on oil at any cost, why didn't the US simply cut a deal with Saddam? I think it quite possible that the US could have simply said, "Alright Saddam, in exchange for not destroying you, just pump us your oil at a nice $.50 a barrel."

For one thing, the French were in favor of dropping sanctions, having funnelled billions of dollars to Saddam in the oil-for-food program. Certainly the Russians would have also agreed, as they love purchasers for weapons and nukes.

For that matter, were the US so hellbent on getting oil, as you presume, why doesn't the US give whatever Iran wants in exchange for oil? Hell, we could give the Iranians the bomb in exchange for oil. What about getting oil from Sudan? We could just let their little genocide go unnoticed.

Clearly, the courses of action I listed are completely ludicrous. Why are they so ludicrous? Because the US values oil much less than you presume. Your assumption is taken to absurdity if actually applied. That the US will start a war (the highest price you can pay for something) mostly for the sake of oil, when other cheap oil-optimizing alternatives exist, is absurd.


RE: 175$ becomes the price
By themadmilkman on 4/29/2007 5:37:49 AM , Rating: 1
No, given the evidence that has come to light, it would appear that we went to war with Iraq because our President wanted to finish what his father did not, namely take Saddam Hussein out of power. The whole process has been littered with examples of the government ignoring facts, promoting lies, and other foolishness. And all for what? A move from a relatively stable, but unfriendly regime, to what now essentially appears to be a turf war between various Iraqi factions, with the unfortunate side effect of killing American soldiers.

But no, we definitely didn't go to war over oil, at least not as a primary concern. Please. There are plenty of oil sources that would have been much easier to capture than Iraq.


"Let's face it, we're not changing the world. We're building a product that helps people buy more crap - and watch porn." -- Seagate CEO Bill Watkins











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