Kids in the Trojan Horse
November 30th, 2006

The New York Times today is running a story titled: For $150, Third-World Laptop Stirs a Big Debate. The article has a factual update on the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project headed by Nicholas Negroponte, which continues to move ahead with manufacturing expected to begin in mid-2007. In the atmosphere of the ‘Perfect Storm’ Todd Richmond predicts is hitting non-digital education, the ‘debate’ is fascinating. These quotes from the article give some flavor:

Readers’ Opinions solicits responses to: ‘Is a cheap laptop the best approach to educate the developing world’s children or would the money be better spent on issues like teacher training and curriculum?’

Bill Gates is quoted questioning ‘whether the concept is ‘just taking what we do in the rich world’ and assuming that that is something good for the developing world, too.’

”The soldiers inside this Trojan horse are children with laptops,’ said Walter Bender, a computer researcher who served as director of the Media Laboratory after Mr. Negroponte and now heads software development for the laptop project.’

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