The One Laptop Per Child’s “Give One Get One” 2-week sale starts today. $400 buys you a cutting edge (if oddly cheap-looking) laptop and pays for another one to be given to a poor kid elsewhere in the world. [OLPC]

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  1. notallcompaniesarebad says:

    Already ordered mine. Seems like a neat gadget and the philanthropy (including company match) seems like an added bonus.

  2. karlrove says:

    ah, yes. the $100, now $200 laptop program. still a good cause, of course.

  3. GearheadGeek says:

    This device is significant, it’s “a good thing” and I support the effort. It’s innovative and quite useful for the purpose intended, but I don’t think it can be described as “cutting edge” from a technological point of view, though perhaps it is from a feature perspective if you’re looking for something in its designed purpose, the low-power, mesh-network developing world.

  4. GitEmSteveDave says:

    @karlrove: well, when based on the US dollar, like oil, the price rises as the dollar slips. Doesn’t mean it actually changed price.

  5. GitEmSteveDave says:

    The program started today at 6am, and I had mine by 5:58. I really want to know about getting the other gadgets, like the yo-yo generator, or the $10 solar panel. It’s cool to think you can take it camping, and not have to worry about it losing power. The yo-yo charger even charges other stuff like cell phones, iPods, etc.. Add in the free one year access to T-Mobile hotspot(any device, not just the XO), and it’s a sweet deal.

    Taking bets to how long till on Ebay after they ship. Any ideas?

  6. hapless says:

    There’s no such thing as a free lunch, even if you buy it for someone else.

    Why don’t they sell the laptops to the intended recipients at a low cost, and sell the laptops at a market rate in North America?

    It’s especially sickening that they’ve taken a bad idea for a charity and turned it into a faux-charity, by tying it to a commercial product. This is even lamer than Bono’s “Red” campaign.

  7. hapless says:

    @GitEmSteveDave:

    The estimated price went through the roof long before the dollar started slipping. Profitable at $100 was never more than pie in the sky.

  8. FLConsumer says:

    @hapless: Probably because the intended recipients can’t even afford to put food on their table, let alone know what $100 USD or even $200 USD looks like.

    @hapless: I think that $150 isn’t out of the question… Mass production of them will bring the costs down, just a matter of time. As for $100 laptops? Maybe.. I don’t see why the laptop manufacturers twilight their systems so early. For quite a few people, and older P2-based laptop is more than sufficient. R&D’s already paid, raw materials aren’t THAT much. Most expensive parts are the screen and the battery.

    I’m on the fence as to whether I’m going to get one or not. I like the idea of a ruggedized laptop that runs Linux, but don’t want to pay for a Panasonic Toughbook. Just want to make sure it’ll be able to handle what I’d expect it before pulling the trigger. Even if $200 still goes to charity, that’s $200 that would otherwise go to a local charity.

  9. FLConsumer says:

    @GitEmSteveDave: They’ll be on e-bay before they ship, guaranteed.

  10. JeffM says:

    I’ll stick with a Dell, thanks. I’m sure kids in other countries need a hell of a lot of other things before a computer!

  11. Mr. Gunn says:

    I think it’s a fantastic idea, and if it turns out that you don’t like the laptop, give it as a christmas gift. It’d make a great child-proof laptop.

  12. CyGuy says:

    @JeffM: “I’m sure kids in other countries need a hell of a lot of other things before a computer!”

    Like being able to communicate to the rest of the world exactly what they do need – oh gosh, they could use a computer for that.

    Or being able to locate low cost suppliers for things like medicines and water purification equipment (or even free online plans on how to build their own water purifiers or refrigeration units for medicines out of stuff they have lying around?) Oh, something else they can do with a computer.

    Or learn another language so that when they are old enough they can travel abroad and get additional knowledge to bring home to their homeland – what do you know, something else they can do with a computer.

    Or how about setting up a micro-business such as providing phone service to their small village and making a small income of say a $1 day which would be enough to feed and clothe their family – hey, one more thing that a computer can do.

    If you really think there is something they need more – I’m hoping you are backing that up by making your $200 donation to UNICEF, or the HEIFFER PROJECT, or HABITAT FOR HUMANITY, or OXFAM, or whichever charity you feel will best target that need – those are all worthy projects and they are all helping kids in developing areas, but don’t diss this project unless you are putting your wallet where your keyboard is.

  13. swalve says:

    @Cy Guy: That’s all well and good. Do you know what starvation really is? Do you know how meaningless a green hunk of plastic is to someone who will DIE TONIGHT without some clean water and food?

    The OLPC thing has its place, the second world maybe.

    Your mocking tone makes me sick.

  14. KJones says:

    The concept is a failure. They could have built $50 laptops if they had given up fancy graphics and all the other bells and whistles. Isn’t basic literacy (i.e. text) a little more imporant than slideshows in countries where people need to learn how to read and write? Besides that, the same could have been done with cell phones now that phone networks are being built across the third world and basic phones are so cheap. So much for them being visionaries.

    People may not like rain on the parade, but I’m just the weatherman.

  15. JeffM says:

    @Cy Guy:
    You’re looking at things computers can do in your own secure life. You need to understand that you are a bit further up the human needs ladder- somehow I’m not sure the things you outlined are really among the top 5 needs to folks in third world country.

    And yes, I would donate to support basic needs of people before I would buy a crappy laptop for twice the price.

    Thanks for being such a dick about it too… you imply that a computer is essential to anyone’s life- not sure I agree with you.