Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 13th Jul 2007 19:20 UTC
Intel There's nothing like allegations of predatory conduct to bring two organizations together. Nicholas Negroponte's One Laptop Per Child project has decided to bring Intel on board as a partner and a possible future supplier, just a few months after Negroponte went on 60 Minutes and essentially accused the chip maker of trying to destroy his low-cost PC project. Intel has agreed to join the board of the OLPC and work with the organization on possible "collaborations involving technology and educational content," according to a press release Friday morning.
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Motivation
by ngaio on Fri 13th Jul 2007 20:12 UTC
ngaio
Member since:
2005-10-06

I hope Intel is interested in partnering with OLPC for reasons that ultimately transcend financial profit.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Motivation
by jdrake on Sat 14th Jul 2007 00:07 UTC in reply to "Motivation"
jdrake Member since:
2005-07-07

I do hope you realize that ultimately a venture has to make money - even if it isn't a great amount. In economic terms an accounting profit (as opposed to an economic profit) can indicate if something is economically viable.

If it isn't, then it likely should not be done. Considering the massive scope of this sort of project, if it was not economically viable I would not expect them to be involved in anyway.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Motivation
by orfanum on Sat 14th Jul 2007 11:37 UTC in reply to "RE: Motivation"
orfanum Member since:
2006-06-02

Depends what you mean by 'venture' - space travel, mass warfare...have these things ever shown even an accounting profit? They are still committed though since money is only a means to an end, not a measure of worth. Materialists and capitalists often confuse these two.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Motivation
by jdrake on Sat 14th Jul 2007 17:20 UTC in reply to "RE: Motivation"
jdrake Member since:
2005-07-07

Space travel, I would argue is not that same as OLPC in any realistic way. OLPC is to produce millions of units. Whereas, the travel in space is ultimately a scientific advancement (regardless of the original purpose).

Reply Score: 0

RE: Motivation
by bm3719 on Sat 14th Jul 2007 15:29 UTC in reply to "Motivation"
bm3719 Member since:
2006-05-30


I hope Intel is interested in partnering with OLPC for reasons that ultimately transcend financial profit.


Like filling the world with millions of pieces of plastic junk?

I, and I suspect a good number of the other people here, grew up without a laptop. Somehow we turned out OK. I would think that a computer lab with 50 decent machines, regularly updated, would not only be at least as cost effective as giving a thousand students personal laptops, but also produce a lot less waste.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Motivation
by StephenBeDoper on Sun 15th Jul 2007 17:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Motivation"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

I, and I suspect a good number of the other people here, grew up without a laptop. Somehow we turned out OK.


True enough - but if you're trying to imply that that means the OLPC is a *bad* idea, that would be an example of a post hoc fallacy.

I would think that a computer lab with 50 decent machines, regularly updated, would not only be at least as cost effective as giving a thousand students personal laptops, but also produce a lot less waste.


There are advantages to laptops in a school environment. For one, they could be used to help reduce text book purchasing costs - I would guess that electronic versions of text books are less expensive than printed copies (and shipping costs - especially to remote areas - should be much easier to afford with electronic textbooks). Electronic text books also can be updated much quicker - important for scientific subjects, where an out-of-date textbook can result in students being taught things that aren't correct. And there shouldn't be the same sort of physical shortage problems with electronic textbooks.

Another important factor with laptops is that the personal possession aspect leads students to have a sense of ownership of/attachment to the device. That seems to result in the machines being used much more, whereas many computer labs often sit unused a large amount of the time (at least, from my past experience working for a computer access centre located in a middle school).

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Motivation
by sbergman27 on Sun 15th Jul 2007 17:50 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Motivation"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

I would like to further suggest that laptops in third world countries is a *qualitatively* different situation than in the first world, where most families have at least one computer at home, and the availability of text books in the classroom is basically a given.

In the US, a laptop could easily just be another thing to carry arround, and potentially abuse. And perhaps a distraction, as well.

But in the third world, the laptop and associated, reduced cost etexts may be the only textbooks available. And the device may be the students' *only* window on the wider world, via the Internet.

I tend to discount the usefulness of laptops at schools here in the U.S. But I see great potential for the XO in the third world.

Edited 2007-07-15 17:51

Reply Score: 3

motivation
by Punktyras on Fri 13th Jul 2007 20:19 UTC
Punktyras
Member since:
2006-01-07

If you can't defeat someone, make a friend of him:)

Reply Score: 4

Cool!
by fretinator on Fri 13th Jul 2007 20:21 UTC
fretinator
Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm glad they made up. I had an iBook and an XP notebook kiss once. The next day I found an Ubuntu sub-notebook nearby!

Reply Score: 4

RE: Cool!
by sbergman27 on Fri 13th Jul 2007 21:11 UTC in reply to "Cool!"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
I'm glad they made up. I had an iBook and an XP notebook kiss once. The next day I found an Ubuntu sub-notebook nearby!
"""

Me too. But in that case the iBook just caught mono. ;-)

Edited 2007-07-13 21:11

Reply Score: 5

Negroponte ...
by tomcat on Fri 13th Jul 2007 21:10 UTC
tomcat
Member since:
2006-01-06

... should have brought in Intel from the start. He could have shopped a spec to both Intel and AMD, and got them to compete against one another. As for his whining about Intel trying to destroy his project, he's essentially complaining about competition which, in my book, is BS. Intel's conduct would have only become predatory if it (1) dumped at or below cost, or (2) shut Negroponte or his suppliers out of market channels. There is no evidence that Intel did either of those things, so Negroponte is complaining about nothing at all. Still, it was wise to bring in Intel.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Negroponte ...
by DigitalAxis on Fri 13th Jul 2007 21:45 UTC in reply to "Negroponte ..."
DigitalAxis Member since:
2005-08-28

Well, neither has come to market, so all we have are rumors. He might have been right, he might not.

I still think the XO and Classmate PC are aimed at different markets.

Hopefully this will help. I mean, I want to see the XO succeed... but that doesn't NECESSARILY require that nobody else does.

All the geeks who keep looking at the XO and saying "Oh, I want one" can get a ClassmatePC or Eee instead.

Edited 2007-07-13 21:49

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Negroponte ...
by cyclops on Fri 13th Jul 2007 21:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Negroponte ..."
cyclops Member since:
2006-03-12

"I still think the XO and Classmate PC are aimed at different markets."

both being low cost, low power laptops, aimed at education, aimed at developing countries, and sold to Governments, in large quantaties. Clearly they are the same product type.

But your right they are different, one if driven by wanting to improve the world, and the other by Evil.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Negroponte ...
by ronaldst on Fri 13th Jul 2007 22:32 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Negroponte ..."
ronaldst Member since:
2005-06-29

But your right they are different, one if driven by wanting to improve the world, and the other by Evil.


I certainly don't know about Negroponte's past, if it's evil or not, but Intel has already improved the world. They can only continue their good work.

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: Negroponte ...
by sbergman27 on Fri 13th Jul 2007 22:37 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Negroponte ..."
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
I certainly don't know about Negroponte's past, if it's evil or not, but Intel has already improved the world. They can only continue their good work.
"""

Of the planes upon which we could possibly project the graph of the multidimensional universe of human interaction, the plane of Good vs Evil is not exactly the most useful. But it can be... interesting.

Edited 2007-07-13 22:39

Reply Score: 3

RE: Negroponte ...
by cyclops on Fri 13th Jul 2007 21:52 UTC in reply to "Negroponte ..."
cyclops Member since:
2006-03-12

"(1) dumped at or below cost, or (2) shut Negroponte or his suppliers out of market channels"

Actually thats pretty much sums up what Negroponte problem with Intel.

Edited 2007-07-13 21:53

Reply Score: 3

v RE[2]: Negroponte ...
by tomcat on Sat 14th Jul 2007 04:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Negroponte ..."
RE[3]: Negroponte ...
by StephenBeDoper on Sun 15th Jul 2007 17:02 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Negroponte ..."
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Don't believe it. In my opinion, Negroponte is really just pissed off because Intel can provide a better economy of scale than he can -- and this would make Negroponte's OLPC uncompetitive in the market for bargain basement PCs.


If we're going to attempt to divine motives, it could just as easily be suggested that the Classmate PC is a crass expression of sour grapes on Intel's part, in response to AMD being chosen to supply the XO-1's CPU.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Negroponte ...
by StephenBeDoper on Sun 15th Jul 2007 16:36 UTC in reply to "Negroponte ..."
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

... should have brought in Intel from the start.


How do we know he didn't attempt to?

As for his whining about Intel trying to destroy his project, he's essentially complaining about competition which, in my book, is BS.


If we were talking about a solely business-oriented venture, then I would agree. But in this case, I highly doubt that the OLPC project would even exist if typical business thinking was the sole motivation. I have no illusions that it's entirely altruistic, but it does seem like one of those rare situations where large corporations are at acting out of enlightened self-interest. As opposed to the standard wisdom of "make as much money as possible, with as little effort as possible, and do it quickly as possible - long-term consequences be damned."

In that context, I think that Negroponte and many others saw the Classmate PC as Intel's attempt to make a quick buck by undermining the OLPC project. Especially put in context with the fact that Intel's chairman publicly criticized the OLPC project back in 2005 - the cynical take on it at the time ("Intel thinks OLPC is a bad idea because it doesn't use Intel hardware") certainly seems to have been validated.

Reply Score: 2

Drawnstories_studios
Member since:
2005-12-12

Embrace

Extend

Extinguish

Reply Score: 2

helf Member since:
2005-07-06

Sounds like a good plan to me. ;)

Reply Score: 2

tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

Since when is offering viable competition "foul-smelling"? Negroponte isn't the only one who wants to offer a low-cost PCs to developing nations. Why should he be the presumptive favorite, even if his motives are apparently philanthropic?

Reply Score: 0

shykid Member since:
2007-02-22

I think Intel is doing this just to ultimately get the OLPC to switch to Intel everything--processors, video, chipsets, etc--that way they'll be getting money from their competition and the Classmate--and they'll still have an education-laptop revenue source if the Classmate fails.

Edited 2007-07-14 18:51

Reply Score: 2

Good news
by moleskine on Sat 14th Jul 2007 05:48 UTC
moleskine
Member since:
2005-11-05

If you want to get on in the Developing World, being seen as a predatory US monopoly out to crush an apparently popular indie outfit isn't exactly the smart way to go about it. That's the impression Intel was in danger of creating. Intel has now seen the threat to their image - perhaps a few governments in the Developing World pointed it out to them - and has decided to move in another direction. It's still a commercial decision, but a welcome one. The unanswered question is whether the chairman of Intel relented, or his fellow directors forced him to.

Edited 2007-07-14 05:50

Reply Score: 3

started shipping yet?
by jessta on Sat 14th Jul 2007 09:56 UTC
jessta
Member since:
2005-08-17

have they started shipping the laptops yet?
If they don't hurry up the market is going to catch up to them and there will have been no point in all the 'research' they apparently did.

- Jesse McNelis

Reply Score: 3

RE: started shipping yet?
by renox on Sat 14th Jul 2007 17:13 UTC in reply to "started shipping yet?"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

Well, as they have decided to use new GUI/system, the OLPC will take a while to mature..

While I agree that there are a quite a few vendors working on laptops which flash disk that could compete with the OLPC hardware, I remember quite well what happened with the computers we had in our school: they were mostly unused and not very useful.

The OLPC is trying to improve education, not only bring laptops, so hardware competition in itself is not enough, or more precisely *shouldn't be enough* for clients: they ought to look at the big picture, not only at the laptops themselves..

Reply Score: 2

Posting this from Mozambique...
by fizzled on Sat 14th Jul 2007 19:29 UTC
fizzled
Member since:
2006-01-06

...and I don't think the XO would be so popular here. Without an optical drive, the kids will have no way to copy CD's or watch the Jean Claude Van Damme 6-in-1 DVD's.

While I admire the philanthropic spirit on the part of Negroponte et al., I think the money could be put to much better uses like TRAINING TEACHERS and TEACHING PEOPLE TO READ-- not to mention bringing the AIDS epidemic under control; building wells; providing school lunches, so that kids actually come to school; building schools; buying blackboards, chalk, notebooks, pencils, paper, etc.

The list of places that have signed up for the laptop has countries at varying levels of development, and there's no one "magic bullet" solution to ending poverty; however, there is some "low hanging fruit" or actions that can produce quick wins. Providing a bunch of gadgets to kids, in my view, isn't one of them.

Edited 2007-07-14 19:31

Reply Score: 1

hollovoid Member since:
2005-09-21

Amen, Laptops are a nice addition to quality education, but when there are worse things at hand in these developing countries, I dont see how it would help out. Famine, warfare, aids as fizzled mentioned above. I would rather see those get attention, then the very few that attend school to get a laptop.

Reply Score: 0

Finalzone Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't think the XO would be so popular here. Without an optical drive, the kids will have no way to copy CD's or watch the Jean Claude Van Damme 6-in-1 DVD's.

Optical drive is probably one of primary mobile device prone to break on laptop and hard to repair. It is possible to plug a XO machine to an external USB drive using modules. That approach is much better than having an internal moving drive.


While I admire the philanthropic spirit on the part of Negroponte et al., I think the money could be put to much better uses like TRAINING TEACHERS and TEACHING PEOPLE TO READ-- not to mention bringing the AIDS epidemic under control; building wells; providing school lunches, so that kids actually come to school; building schools; buying blackboards, chalk, notebooks, pencils, paper, etc.


Why not addressing the issue on
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Ask_OLPC_a_Question

Also check out
Please read: http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Galadima.

Edited 2007-07-15 20:02

Reply Score: 2

v Negroponte is a Flip Flop Professor
by rakamaka on Sun 15th Jul 2007 15:09 UTC
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

At first he slept with AMD and now he is in bed with Intel. In between he dated with microsoft also creating doubts in faithful linux community.


But in the minds of rational adults, it demonstrated that he is primarily concerned with building a useful device - and not the "social acceptability" of the people supplying the hardware and software. I would be much more alarmed if Negroponte *had* engaged in the sort of mindless "free software fundamentalism" that's becoming so prevalent.

Reply Score: 2