Thursday, September 29, 2005

Cheap laptops

I'm a blog-posting machine today! I just wanted to draw your attention to the folks at MIT who have designed a laptop that they will (hopefully) sell for $100. From the article:
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.


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.
I think this is an absolutely wonderful idea! Don't forget to read the slashdot comments, too!

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