OLPC and Microsoft punt Windows-only XO laptop
Odd couple shack up
Microsoft and the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) foundation have confirmed that the XO laptop will soon be available as Windows-loaded machines.
They will be sold in five or six countries (Microsoft hasn’t said which ones) starting in June, with a broader release penciled in for August or September this year.
The announcement follows last month’s email from the OLPC project founder Nicholas Negroponte. He said at the time that the group had reached an agreement with the software giant to adapt the distinctive green and white XO laptop to run the Windows operating system.
The XO laptops, which come with a $188 price tag, have been designed to save the children of developing countries from a world without technology, although take up has so far been somewhat sluggish.
Negroponte has also called for the development of a dual-boot XO laptop with both Linux and Windows to give the world's poorest school kids the widest range of choice, but so far, Microsoft’s not really playing ball.
The firm said yesterday that the initial, limited run of XOs will ship as Windows-only machines. Meanwhile, the OLPC group will work with third parties to port its user interface, called Sugar, to Windows.
Negroponte, who has been keen to justify the group’s new tie-in with Microsoft, has stressed that running Red Hat’s Linux distribution on the machines seriously limited their credibility among governments and companies reluctant to invest in a non-Windows system.
Comments like that have caused serious internal wrangles and a number of high-profile resignations at the OLPC foundation in recent months.
Walter Bender was the group's third high-profile casualty when he walked out of the organisation in April. Since December it has also lost chief technology officer Mary Lou Jepsen and top security architect Ivan Krstic.
Negroponte insisted as recently as last month that the group’s decision to climb into bed with Microsoft - a move viewed by many commentators as an odd coupling - would not lead to the foundation abandoning its open source commitments. ®
why good projects get bad like this
5 years ago there was great hope and happiness for OLPC.
The more project delayed the more suspicion accumulated.
Now there is no trust on OLPC.
The only way OLPC can get trust again, Very easy :
" give OLPC to USA consumers. If they buy Negroponte can get trust again . "
I am so sorry for the end of OLPC.
@ A J Stiles
"Build a man a fire, he is warm for a night. Light that man on fire, he is warm for the rest of his life."
A perception of the plan
To scorched earth policy, spot on correct.
That was the goal, Microsoft has no intentions of allowing any notion of decency to divert anyone on planet Earth from escaping their malicious grip on owning all digital data.
It is all about control.
Those who are in information technologies who don't see it are incapable of deep thought.
Those who are in governments who don't see the threat of mono culture to the stability of any ecosystem are either willfully blind due to corrupted thinking or a part of the plan with a serious case of ignorance exploitation by those smarter than them..
And the operational methodologies of Microsoft is a great example of absolute power corrupting absolutely. The sum total of their intent is what defines the face of evil, as it is well planed and executed malicious intentional destruction of any form of communication via any system they can't possess.
Decency is not dead, as shown by those who struggle for its survival.
However it is obvious that those who thrive on the power base of Microsoft should ask themselves if that is really the world they want to live in... One in which most of humanity's efforts are focused on the maintenance of inherently corrupted communications with hundreds of millions of man years of wasted time patching the un-patchable and paying equivalent sums of money to those who possess and own the system itself in perpetual servitude of that system.
OLPC was not going to save the world, but its ideals with open source for its malleability and freedom of the future was a nice idea, and that is why Microsoft must destroy it.
Will Microsoft succeed, of course not, but the train wreck in communications technologies that will follow in the wake of their collapse might cause people to ponder what a better world might have looked like.
Good night and good luck
scorched earth policy
MS has won a major victory here. Whether or not OLPC goes on to selling any units from now on is moot. They have managed to decapitate OPLC by forcing the top people to resign and destroyed any credibility that Negroponte may have had. And most importantly they have prevented millions of people from getting acquainted with computers using something other than Windows. If the OPLC does still manages to be a success then MS would have indoctrinated a whole new generation who grows up believing the 3 Rs (restart, reboot, reinstall) are the holy tenets of computing.
Out of date OS?
Everyone's made some really good points, but the one thing I wonder is, why are they deciding now to push an OS that's already out of date?
What happens to all these lappys once support for XP has vanished?
(so many other problems but everyone's already mentioned them!)