MIT Media Lab Director Nicholas Negroponte unveiled the first working prototype of his famed $100 laptop yesterday at the UN Net Summit in Tunisia. UN Secretary General Kofi Annan called it an “expression of global solidarity,” and the Linux-based, lime-green machine by all accounts stole the show. (Though it’s not without detractors.) Other than the color — which was a surprise — it seems to match closely with the bold concept Negroponte’s been pitching since the World Economic Forum in Davos last January: a simple, durable, cheap laptop, which can be placed in the hands of every child in the developing world. Electricity is supplied through a hand crank, and scarce Internet access can be shared through ‘mesh networking’. Negroponte has created a new non-profit, One Laptop per Child, to manage the program, which plans to have millions of the laptops in production next year. [Full reports from the BBC and Wired News.]
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Since Nicholas Negroponte presented his idea for a “100-dollar-laptop” at TED2006, the project has been going through many ups and downs, enthusiasms and criticisms, and had occupied a lot of media space. The XO laptop is now here. The cost at this stage is nearly double, but the machine is awesome. Mass production started earlier […]