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OLPC founder, Negroponte, has a few words for Intel on low-cost laptops

Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the "One Laptop Per Child" initiative, accused chip maker Intel of undermining the OLPC by selling its own cut-price laptop, the Classmate.  Negroponte claims that Intel is trying to drive him out of the market.

According to BBC, Negroponte said that Intel hurt his mission in trying to distribute laptops to kids in developing countries "enormously".  Intel's chairman, Craig Barrett, has denied all claims of undercutting Negroponte's mission, stating, "We're not trying to drive [him] out of business. We're trying to bring capability to young people."

Though the hardware specifications differ between Intel’s low-cost laptops and Negroponte's, OLPC founder believes that the main problem is that his machines use AMD processors, Intel's main competitor. "Intel and AMD fight viciously," he told CBS. "We're just sort of caught in the middle."

Professor Negroponte also claimed that Intel has distributed marketing literature to governments entailing negative aspects of the One Laptop Per Child and outlining superior aspects of the Classmate.  Some of the literature had titles such as "the shortcomings of the One Laptop per Child approach".  Intel responded by saying that it was just making comparisons between the Classmate PC and the other device in the market.

Countries have until May 31 to place their orders for the first round of PCs.  The launch price will be $175 but the goal is to get them down to $100 each.  Intel is taking orders for the Classmate for over $200 each.



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By eppenoire on 5/21/2007 9:05:38 PM , Rating: 3
Children are children, no matter where they are. I spent part of my childhood growing up in a very rough, poor and uneducated part of Oregon. Very few people in the area could read and if it wasn't for my mother, I wouldn't have had an education. I have visited some of the worst hell holes on Earth and I understand how hard it is for these kids. However giving them laptops, which will be stolen and stripped for scrap, is the single dumbest idea I have heard in a while. Books can be found cheap, $100 dollars can buy a lot of used books.

I used California, as an example, because these kids have every opportunity and have failed seize it. You are right about children in third world being more receptive to education. However my point is, that a laptop is a dumb choice for an educational tool.


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