updated 09:00 am EST, Mon November 17, 2008
OLPC Give 1 Get 1 program
As promised back in September, One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) on Monday announced it will once again launch its Give 1 Get 1 program that aims to put a simple, Internet-connected laptop to children in developing countries to help in their education. Anyone can participate in the program by buying two XO laptops for $399, one for themselves and another for a child in a poor country. The other option involves donating as many XO laptops as they want at $199 each. The nonprofit organization's program aims to put more than 1 million laptops into the hands of children in 2008 in countries such as Afghanistan, Iraq, and Cambodia, among others, or more than double of what it did last year.
OLPC is working with Amazon in the US to sell the laptops, as well as buyers in the UK and other countries. Some corporations and organizations will match buyers' donations, with Google matching their employees' purchases, and SWIFT doubling them.
To keep costs down, the XO laptops use open source software and operating systems such as the Linux-based Sugar interface, although there has been talk of Amazon offering a Windows XP version. Mesh networking also saves costs by allowing the notebooks to access the Internet from one connection or to establish a local network without switches or routers.