[Air-l] One Laptop Per Child

Christian Fuchs christian.fuchs at sbg.ac.at
Tue Jun 6 15:21:50 PDT 2006

For a paper I have recently written a comment on Negroponte's $100 laptop as
strategy for bridging the global digital
divide by giving cheap technologies to developing countries. I would like to
share these comments, maybe someone wants
to comment on them.


"Nicholas Negroponte and the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) association have
introduced the $100 laptop as a strategy for advancing computer technology
in developing countries. The problem is that this is a technology that is
inferior to Western standards (very slow processor, no hard disk and drives,
etc.) and hence can be produced and sold rather cheaply. If the $100 laptop
is widely diffused in the Third World, Western actors selling these
computers will derive profits, and a global divide in technological progress
and standards will emerge that separates advanced Western technology users
from users of less-advanced technologies in the Third World. What is needed
are not new business strategies, but solutions to the material and social
causes of the global digital divide as well as free advanced hardware,
infrastructure, and software that are based on open standards and copy-left
licenses. That Microsoft and Intel are critical of the $100 laptop doesn't
mean that it is automatically a good idea; this is rather a manifestation of
the competition for profit and customers in developing countries. Open
source technologies have a potential to transcend market logic, what is
needed is an advanced $0 laptop with free software for people in developing
countries as well as criticism of the logic that has caused the divide
between developing and developed countries and solutions to the social,
economic, political, and cultural inequalities that underpin the global
digital divide".

Christian Fuchs
Assistant Professor for Internet and Society
ICT&S Center - Advanced Studies and Research in Information and
Communication Technologies & Society (http://www.icts.uni-salzburg.at)
University of Salzburg
Sigmund-Haffner-Gasse 18
5020 Salzburg
Phone ++43/662/8044 4823
christian.fuchs at sbg.ac.at
Information-Society-Technology: http://cartoon.iguw.tuwien.ac.at/christian
Managing Editor of tripleC: http://triplec.uti.at

-----Ursprungliche Nachricht-----
Von: air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org
[mailto:air-l-bounces at listserv.aoir.org]Im Auftrag von J. J.
Gesendet: Mittwoch, 7. Juni 2006 00:05
An: air-l at listserv.aoir.org
Betreff: [Air-l] One Laptop Per Child

Here it is: http://www.laptop.org/


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