olpc europe is/is not
Loved your email to grassroots about what OLPC Europe is and isn't - hope you don't mind us adapting it for OLPC Chicago as well. Mchua 16:17, 21 January 2008 (EST)
olpc europe collapse and reboot
I'm not working in the educational landscape. I'm not an ICT person. But I have a 6 year old now in 2013 and I'm worried as a parent. We live in Brussels and I have a keen eye on the European institutions here. We are more than anybody else in Europe aware of what's going on in Europe, what are the objectives for the next coming years, budgets etc. I really thought I'd see the whole OLPC initiative take off here in Europe and by now - anno 2013 - teachers would all be collaborating in making the best book in their discipline via wikibooks, and link up both software as hardware and education wise in the open hard and sofware XO-XServer combination. But ... nothing. I don't hear any minister of education here in Europe nor any organization responsible for organizing education: we chose NOT to participate and allow our educators to link up with the open hardware and software initiative OLPC because ... and that is obviously a much better and smarter and open to the future and connected ... . No, I only hear some ICT teachers touting about having managed to get money to implement an iPad class. And the teacher then has to book the iPads 2 weeks in advance, and the students of 14+ years can then use them in an English class and put them back at the end of the class. I've once been to a presentation of tablets for educators and when I asked these ict teachers... most had just never heard of OLPC. Let alone that they knew ALL kids in Peru, Uruguay and many island states have an XO. And all their schools make use of the strong cards the educational sector can throw on the table: well structured, teachers of all kinds of disciplines also ict, massive numbers, good at developing a high average speed, etc. So in Peru, Uruguay, etc. they all opted for the best allocation of money, so of course you want a cheap processor in every XO and a fast one in a classroom/school XServer that does the crunching of numbers and fast calculations, stores frequently visited pages on its HD, and passes everything to the XO's in ready made chunks so the kids have the best user experience possible. Have you seen what's going on in Australia with their http://www.one-education.org/ ? In Europe, and maybe in some other nations too, there seems to be a misconception that the OLPC is an ok solution for poor kids but not for "normal" kids, your kids, my kids. That is absolutely NOT THE CASE: the XO-XS combination and that embedded in the OLPC Open Software and Hardware initiative and spirit of collaboration is THE BEST LAPTOP you want for your kid in your school in your country! Parents buying expensive iPads for the kids, that's a waste of good precious money. Are they going to allow that 740 € iPad to go on a field trip, taking pictures of "the frog"? NO WAY! That iPad is far too expensive and far to fragile. How are you going to replace the screen or upgrade something inside? The XO is made to be repaired: 1 simple over the counter screw-driver and all one and the same screw. Kids and teachers get a workshop on how to open and repair stuff in the XO. You bet they learn about ICT and electronics. Last month at the OLPC TV Channel in Peru and Uruguay, they showed a couple of youngsters that put wheels on their XO's and thus turned it in programmed robots! Meanwhile here in Europe - the Innovation Union - did you know that's how we have to refer to ourselves? Where do you come from? Hi, I'm from Europe- the Innovation Union. With all due respect, but the way we approach ict, I don't call that very innovative. And my kid is becoming a victim of that, so I've had it. I'm going to ask all ministers of education here in Europe if they don't think it would be a good idea to give their educational sector a way to link up with that OLPC educational initiative in bringing and building on the best possible laptop configuration, open soft and hardware, focussed on collaboration, no more making pseudo books each in their little corner, no collaborating to develop the best ebooks on wikibooks, etc. To do that I advise to set-up a lab with 10 XO-4 Touch, 20 PV portable panels and 2 XServers and a little staff to welcome teachers and students that want can experience what these XO's really feel like. The minimum order of XO is 100. A 20 foot container holds 3.000 XO's and a 40 foot container holds 6.000 XO's. I've started a list where you can put your name on and which will come in handy if you live close to Brussels or pass there once and I hope there will be initiatives interesting enough in your sector that will bring you here to Brussels, anyway: Brussels Harbor Group Order . Prices are there as well. If you want to team up, send me an email and drop by on the irc #olpc Friday evenings from 20-21 pm Brussels time - 20 pm you should be able to link up with the worldwide english speaking OLPC community, 21 pm the Europeans seem to join in. Also sunday evenings from 21 pm seems a good time. Sincerely, --SvenAERTS 23:37, 30 April 2013 (UTC) PS Was on the pay-roll of OLPC Europe for 2 months.