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This is definetly an article desperate for a reaction from the readers. I dont think the author goal is to inform but to rather get mentioned in blogs against him :)


When I was in business school, WSJ was rammed down our throats: you have to read it daily. I soon found that I only needed to skim a few pages each day and occasionally read an article.

I have found that WSJ, like Forbes, is not relevant to daily life, so it is only rarely that I read either. In both cases, their business models are wedded to the old, dying "dinosaur corporation economy", so anything that might threaten the DCE's members gets the hatchet job.

Microsoft, even though it is a fairly young company, is firmly established within the DCE, and the DCE is resistant to anything that might change that. Likewise, Intel is inside (pun intended) nearly everything the DCE buys.

Certainly there have been some bumps on the road--it is to be expected in developing anything that is really new. And certainly, certain corporations see the XO as a threat to their future revenues. But OLPC is really _not_just_about_passing_out_computers_. It is about going around the obstacles that prevent children in foreign lands from getting an education that prepares them to free their lands from economic servitude.

Giving those kids a traditional Wintel PC would be a total flop in the same way that teaching second graders to use a particular brand and version of word processing software is a failure. It is a failure to consider the native inquisitiveness and desire for learning that children have. It is a failure of vision and imagination. And it is one of the cruelest things we can do to them.

The WSJ's article accentuates the negative, because they do not understand the vision or the kinds of people that would support it. It is totally foreign to them, just like funding research that does not have a clear path to commercialization. OLPC is like the Peace Corps: a place to put idealism into action, to truly benefit those who are in need without trying to force societal changes from outside. Both place the emphasis on working within the existing society to benefit the next generation, and both are a little bit subversive in some corners.

Like other members of the DCE, WSJ's blinders will keep them from seeing that a project like OLPC is *exactly* what third-world children need, and in fact is exactly what American children need until the countries that do see this begin to surge in the competition to be the next "tiger". One day, when a "Lagos Business Journal" eclipses WSJ, they will recognize that they made a wrong turn.

Janet Bryce

Steve & James over at WSJ can write as much negativity about Negroponte as they want. Fact is ever since Negroponte got an audience with U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan the OLPC was destined to be a hit. Intel and Asus may try and ride the OLPC's coat-tails, but the green machine has got too much of a head start and garnered much love and support from the general public.


A Publicity stunt for sure

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