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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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By feelingshorter on 4/29/2007 2:46:13 AM , Rating: 2
One good use for this in the USA (as well as other countries) would be digitizing paper books. I'm tired of paying 120 bucks for a book + 60 dollars for "chem/bio/skillbuilder" or "MyMathLab", on top of your actual lab book. Heavy to carry around too. If they make a OLPC with ebooks, students will be able to carry around all their books (and more) in one package.

Why not laptops? Laptops are bigger, heavier and overpowered. You don't need a C2D for a basic ebook reader/word processing program. I want something that can boot up really quick, and don't have any moving parts inside so it will be rigid. I know SSD hard drives are going to replace regular hard drives somewhere in the future but what I'm saying is that we don't need a lot of space. Make OLPCs strictly for educational purposes. Make it so that they can combine, for example, a chemistry book w/ chemskillbuilder and lab book all into one. That way, a student can read, do his/her homework, and turn it in wirelessly either at school or at home. Forgot what you were problems you were assigned in the book for homework? No problem, if someone designs a simple scheduler that shows you all your assignments from all your classes. Each OLPC can be identified by the student id number, with a database to keep records of all the classes that student is taking. Maybe even make it download your homework automatically once you step onto school campus.

As for the screen? High resolution but doesn't need a lot of color dept (since its mostly text).

Laptops are used for a variety of reasons, from gaming (a little) to word processing. But if there is a OLPC designed for educational purposes only, it can use hardware that doesn't need to handle everything, and therefore can be ultra low voltage and slow (how fast can you read :P).

Maybe I'm dreaming, but just as the newspaper industry is suffering, the book industry might follow. Ebooks/audiobooks are the way to go. Journalist are in the business of news reporting, so even if newspaper dies, they still have jobs. Books and education will always be needed, and OLPCs are just a new means of delivery.

but... one thing does bother me... All these guys pushing OLPCs are saying they are doing it for the "3rd world countries" when I can see many benefits for the USA. I can see Carlos Mencia saying "Waaitt a minnuuute" in a retarded person's voice. Its like they are saying "we're helping people in other countries" until someone in the USA realizes the light and pushes the idea through our education system. Companies aren't stupid, so I see it as a hoax to take the moral high ground. They know the massive benefits and will make tons of money in the USA sooner or later.

RE: ebooks
By Dactyl on 4/29/2007 4:17:36 AM , Rating: 2
We will get eBooks as soon as the content owners figure out how to DRM them into uselessness.

For instance, you will be able to buy your textbooks for $60 instead of $80-120, but they will disappear after 1 semester.

RE: ebooks
By michal1980 on 4/29/2007 9:37:13 AM , Rating: 1
already out there, safarix i belive is the sight.

RE: ebooks
By eman 7613 on 4/29/2007 7:12:47 PM , Rating: 2
Doesn't matter, its called the PrintScrn button, you can download (or code easily enough) applications that will take a pic of the screen and auto save it into a pdf, jpg, what ever and be done with it.

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer
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