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MIT's $100 laptop





babumuchhala
Cnet News.com wrote:
Nicholas Negroponte, the co-founder of the Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, detailed specifications for a $100 windup-powered laptop targeted at children in developing nations.

Negroponte, who laid out his original proposal at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in January, said MIT and his nonprofit group, called One Laptop Per Child, is in discussions with five countries--Brazil, China, Thailand, Egypt and South Africa--to distribute up to 15 million test systems to children.

In addition, Massachusetts is working with MIT on a plan to distribute the laptops to schoolchildren, Negroponte said.

"This is the most important thing I have ever done in my life," Negroponte said on Wednesday during a presentation at Technology Review's Emerging Technologies Conference at MIT. "Reception has been incredible. The idea is simple. It's an education project, not a laptop project. If we can make education better--particularly primary and secondary schools--it will be a better world."

He said a goal of the project is to make the low-cost PC idea a grassroots movement that will spread in popularity, like the Linux operating system or the Wikipedia free online encyclopedia. "This is open-source education. It's a big issue."

Negroponte said the idea is that governments will pay roughly $100 for the laptops and will distribute them for free to students.

The proposed design of the machines calls for a 500MHz processor, 1GB of memory and an innovative dual-mode display that can be used in full-color mode, or in a black-and-white sunlight-readable mode. The display makes the laptop "both an electronic book and a laptop," he said.

One display design being considered is a flat, flexible printed display developed at MIT's Media Lab. Negroponte said the technology can be used to produce displays that cost roughly 10 cents per square inch. "The target is $12 for a 12-inch display with near-zero power consumption," he said.

Power for the new systems will be provided through either conventional electric current, batteries or by a windup crank attached to the side of the notebooks, since many countries targeted by the plan do not have power in remote areas, Negroponte said.

The machines, which will run a version of the Linux operating system, will also include other applications, some developed by MIT researchers, as well as country-specific software. "Software has gotten too fat and unreliable, so we started with Linux," he said.

For connectivity, the systems will be Wi-Fi- and cell phone-enabled, and will include four USB ports, along with built-in "mesh networking," a peer-to-peer concept that allows machines to share a single Internet connection.

"In emerging nations, the issue is not connectivity," Negroponte said. "That was the issue, but there are many people working on it, (thanks to) global competitiveness. But for education, the roadblock is the laptop."

Five companies are working with MIT to develop an initial 5 million to 15 million test units within the year: Google, Advanced Micro Devices, News Corp., Red Hat and BrightStar, Negroponte said. He said the current plan is to produce 100 million to 150 million units by 2007.

Negroponte admits that his goals are ambitious. Currently, the world production of laptops is just under 50 million, he said.

While the initial goal of the project is to work with governments, Negroponte said MIT is considering licensing the design or giving it to a third-party company to build commercial versions of the PC. "Those might be available for $200, and $20 or $30 will come back to us to make the kids' laptops. We're still working on that," he said.

Others have launched low-cost PC ideas in the past, though MIT's project may be the most ambitious.

Last year, Advanced Micro Devices announced plans for its Personal Internet Connector--a prototype with a price tag of at least $185, with no display. And an Indian company called Novatium said it plans to offer a stripped-down home computer for about $70 or $75.

In addition, Microsoft's antipiracy-minded Steve Ballmer last year called for a move toward the $100 PC for developing nations.


Images:










This should revolutionize studing in developing countries, and hopefull some functioning of the Government


Source:Cnet News.com
Jammydodger
very nice indeed, looks retro, and all for $100.
Cant be bad Wink
Hoss
Eh, it looks kind of lame, but for $100, if it's for sale to the general public, I think I might pick one up. Razz
VicTor
Quote:
The machines, which will run a version of the Linux operating system


I think this is the most importent issue.

Hardware is always become cheap, not like softwares,so linux and open code softwares will show everyone that there is something else then MS$ !
Deji
Hoss wrote:
Eh, it looks kind of lame, but for $100, if it's for sale to the general public, I think I might pick one up. Razz


not realy

if you look at the way its designed its possibly one of the most usable designs ive seen for a laptop... its similar to what most users would expect but the options to use it ie. handheld and tablet, and the "theater" is great.

if you look at the different options for it, IE having an ebook or sitting it on a table in the "theater" mode and watching some video files it would be great..

the handle is maybe a bit large but compared to all the different uses for it i think its worth it.. for $100 ....

alsi the carrying strap / ac adaptor is a bit of pure genius ... as it gives you one less thing to get in the way

its nice to see a computing design that would maybe take a bit of punishment as most things tend to be thin and fragile (ipod nano for example)
samh
This is great news. I was just wondering who is gonna support it financially. 15 million laptops are going to be distributed in 5 developing nations!!!
babumuchhala
samh wrote:
This is great news. I was just wondering who is gonna support it financially. 15 million laptops are going to be distributed in 5 developing nations!!!
Its for a good noble cause of education and thare are many who would be willing to help
Deji
babumuchhala wrote:
samh wrote:
This is great news. I was just wondering who is gonna support it financially. 15 million laptops are going to be distributed in 5 developing nations!!!
Its for a good noble cause of education and thare are many who would be willing to help


im sure a lot of software developers would want to be in on this (OpenOffice, Mozilla etc. as it would give them a large market) there are also im sure a lot of charities that would buy these as educational supplies..

im sure IT companies would also probably sponsor it.

even if developing countries had to buy them themselves.. $100 isnt (that) much for a very useful bit of equipment.. but im sure a lot of people will help out as well...
king007
amazing if this comes off, 60quid for a laptop.
Kitsune
I'll prolly pick oune up for 100$! jeez, that's not much for a laptop...
sqlreport
This design looks a lot like Newton Frog. (Long live Newton!) I really like the hand crank battery. I wonder if this is durable as well. I really enjoy this concept work.
coolclay
I think they should make them for sale to the general public and maybe charge a little more, as well as selling them to poor countrys for $100.
blueknot
damn

i want to go MIT

and buy the $100 laptop

aihahaha.
izcool
From looking at only images of the laptop, to me it looks a bit cheesy. If I see one in person and see it working, I might reconsider. Going to keep an eye on one to see if they come up in stores around me. Very Happy

- Mike.
grade-8
coollll

just for 100$?? Shocked Shocked

i hope that i'll get one like this!
dan751
$100 laptops, with that kind of technology? That's hard to believe, but only time can tell.
watchftp
What happen to 100 dollar laptop? Raspberry pi seems to be doing even better.
Gitesh
Aakash (Ubislate7) Ubislate7+ (The upgraded version of Aakash)
the indian version of the low cost tablet is now available all over india for low price of
Rs.2,500 to Rs.2,999 equivalent to 35 US $ .
It comes with specifications Microprocessor Arm11 – 366Mhz or Cortex A8 – 700 Mhz.,
Battery: :3200 mAh ,OS Android 2.3,
Network WiFi & GPRS (SIM & Phone functionality).
Thi is even better than the 100 USD proposed before 5 yrs. thousands of copies are sold already and bookings are full for next month or so.
weableandbob
That looks really cool. It seems like people are finding ways to make usable, portable computers super cheap nowadays-just look at the raspberry pi project.
silverdown
Yea really not bad at all...and MIT to boot! Exclamation Shocked though this was first posted in 2005 so it may be an outdated article... just saying. Very Happy
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