I really like the XO-1. So do my kids. Yes, its not perfect, but its really darn good. There's a ton of interesting innovation crammed into that cheap package. But its a shame more kids here and elsewhere in the developed world won't have access to any laptop thats specifically designed for them, now that Give One Get One (G1G1) is no longer offered.
I'm not talking only about about doing good for kids "over there". I want to do good for kids right here at home. And more selfishly, I wouldn't buy my kids a real laptop, even if it cost the same amount of money, because they'll break it and such a laptop isn't designed for them - the XO-1 is.
I understand your mission is not to make consumer electronics - its to transform the lives of children through enhanced educational experiences Great. But all I'm asking is that you either:
- Extend G1G1 indefinitely, or
- Let someone else distribute and/or improve the OLPC XO-1 in the United States and other developed countries (or market segments) where the OLPC doesn't plan to operate. This could be on a Redhat-style model (for-profit, built with community benefit at its core).
The main pushback I hear is that there is strain being put on OLPC developers in supporting the G1G1 program. I understand this completely - any proposal for continued distribution would have to offload support onto the community (which is doing a very good job now on a smallish scale) or onto the commercial entity (if option #2). What I really want is the XO-1 in the hands of a generation of kids - and not just a hundred thousand geeks - how can we make this happen?
Whats standing in the way? Are there patents or other intellectual property issues that could be stumbling blocks for getting 3rd parties involved? Is it simply because nobody has asked?
Enthusiastically waiting for your response...
- A Happy XO-1 Dad
Update (1/6/07 10:32pm PST): It appears that Mary Lou Jepsen, the former CTO of OLPC, is actually trying to commercialize the OLPC technology in a beneficial way (as a $75 laptop!). The second half of this post by Charbax also mentions others who've had similar thoughts to what I discuss above