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Friday, January 12, 2007
XO Laptops for the poor world

The OLPC initiative displays XO laptops at CES 2007.



Calling all the world’s poorest consumers. You too can have a laptop computer. Making this possible is a non-profit organisation based in the US .

The laptop computer is expected to suit some of world's poorest consumers, said reports. Developed by One Laptop Per Child (OLPC), the laptop computer XO looks like a toy. The laptop needs only three watts to browse the Web as against 40 watts for a regular modern machine. Further, it would need just less than a single watt to display an electronic book.

The International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) saw the prototype of the XO being demonstrated by OLPC. The ultimate aim of OLPC is to give every child a laptop , reports said.

Talking of the various features of the XO, the machine has an innovative screen hat can operate either in colour or black and white. In black-and-white mode, it can be viewed clearly even in the brightest sunlight, ideal for rural villages where many activities occur outside. The laptop also has a video camera and built-in speakers. What more do you look for?

Going into the technical details, it is learnt that the XO runs a trimmed-down version of the open-source Linux operating system. Though Microsoft and Apple are said to have offered versions of their operating systems for the project, neither of them was compact or secure enough to meet OLPC's needs, reports said. OLPC expects to start delivering the machines this summer, with the goal of delivering 5 million units the first year.

And guess the price? The goal price is less than 0 per unit, which the initiative hopes to achieve by 2008. The idea is to make all governments in the developing world afford the XOs.

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