November 13, 2007

OLPC G1G1 2WKS, 3-2-1, GO!


The One Laptop Per Child--aka The Laptop Formerly Known As The $100 Laptop before it costed out at around $200--started their Give One, Get One campaign yesterday.

For two weeks, when you order two of OLPC's XO Laptops for $400, the organization will send you one and donate the other to a school-age kid in some developing country or other.

It's frankly an awesome-sounding deal on its face that also does a potentially tremendous amount of good for kids somewhere. From the early reviews of the XO Laptop, it's a superb, and innovative first computer that performs well in all sorts of educational and social uses. It's incredibly durable and power-efficient, and it helps kids learn the inner workings of computers and programming, not just how to type or click.

I'm sticking an OLPC ad in the sidebar to remind people of the limited window in which you can buy one of these sweet-sounding rigs. I mean two.

Give 1, Get 1. One Laptop Per Child offer ends Nov. 26 []
David Pogue: "$100 Laptop A Bargain At $200 [nyt]


I did a quick trawling of their site, and I can't find a range of appropriate ages for this thing. Will my almost-3-year-old find it useful, interesting, or frustrating?

Probably depends on your 3 year old. My almost 2 year old could spend an hour pressing the same button if it turned on and off an LED.

That said, it looks like it has some interesting music stuff, and you can download GCompris which has a ton of games for small kids.

[yeah, good point. anyone with a kid under 2 or so may want to wait rather than stockpile, or just do G2G0 instead. -ed.]

The operating system is open source, so you can download a copy from Redhat's server and try it out. It's a Live CD so you can boot off the disk and try it out using the very machine you're reading this comment on... (or if you're a geek like me you can fire it up inside a VMWare window, even.)

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