$100 Laptop – I want to believe

I so want to believe in MIT’s $100 laptop. This video interview with display-expert Mary Lou Jepsen (I think) is highly informative, and Jim Getty’s advice for open source developers makes it feel real to me.

But there’s so many ways this could not happen, because there’s so many corporations that would want to stop it happening, or mess it up by demanding their slice, and so many governments that would let them do it for the price of a few campaign contributions. Using open source software is the best way to stay independent of those vested-interests, and I’m glad to see that they want to open the hardware specs too. That way, even if their project is taken away from them, they or someone else will still be able to complete it.

I love the scope of their ambition. It’s essential to aim this high. Techology can change the dynamics of the whole world for the better by creating abundance instead of scarcity, and education is the first of the conventional problems that it can solve.

I’ve always wanted to get involved in some charity or NGO that’s bringing education to developing countries. Even without this technology, nothing improves health, infant-mortality, quality-of-life, and independence like education. And this feels like somewhere we can help with that. I want to believe in the green machine.