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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 11:41:16 PM , Rating: 2
Well said. I still personally think the idea will be a failure, because it ignores the realities of an environment where people hunt for cardboard to recycle for money. Yes, it won't be as valuable because of the parts in it; however I expect there to be market for scrapping these.

I still believe books are better. They are cheaper, more plentiful and I have yet to find any software educational solution that compares to a book.


By Justin Case on 5/22/2007 1:09:02 AM , Rating: 3
Can you print all the books you need for your entire education, plus all the paper and pens you use, for $175? And that's ignoring the other things you can do with a computer (communication, programming, calculations, etc.).

You say you can't "find any educational software that compares to a book"...? Ever heard of eBooks? PDFs? Text files? Considerably cheaper to duplicate and carry around than thousands of printed sheets of paper. And since pretty much all books these days start their life that way, I'd say it "compares" pretty well to the physical object.


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