One Laptop Per Child gets new life with India choosing to buy a quarter of a million computers for students throughout the country. It will be interesting to see how they decide to distribute these laptops and what operating system and software they choose to use. India has done an excellent job of training technology workers for the rest of the world. This program should provide early technology-related learning opportunities for those impacted by digital divide issues.
Teacher training is always an issue with laptop programs. Does anyone know how India plans to train their teachers for this program? What are the plans for sustaining the program?
One Laptop Per Child is still working on their goal of producing a $100 laptop to help bridge the digital divide. This article questions whether they should be in the business at all given that existing computer companies are now making a similar product.
Good article that explains the pros and cons of open content. Overall, I see this as a positive movement in education. Two possible negatives from my perspective are:
Lack of systematic way to provide peer-review of content – We’re counting on a wikipedia model rather than having a publisher pay experts to review new content.
Possible digital divide issues – As more open content becomes available online there may be an expectation that Internet access is widely available to all. While this is a concern, there are teacher and students who will benefit from this content who do not have access or can’t afford the paper-based content. We must continue to work towards providing access for all while not holding back those who already have access.