Monday, August 27, 2007

Conversion to Ubuntu

I'm a bit behind in the blog because I'm eating my own dogfood. The One Laptop per Child (OLPC) initiative is about to bust loose this year. Asus is releasing a low-cost, suped-up OLPC model that is going to start a tidal wave of activity. It is being sold at a $350 price point for a higher end model. I'll being talking a lot more about the revolutionary technologies this initiative is going to produce.

But more to the point I needed a laptop for work (my work needs are slightly more rigorous than the OLPC baseline) and I've been putting it off. Sunday a very tempting ad got me stoked to finally make a purchase but when I got to the store the sales-guy told me to reconsider the brand - the store was getting lots of returned merchandise related to it. So I shelled out an extra fifty and picked up a Toshiba that I'm right now converting from whatever Microsoft thing is on it to Ubuntu. Total cost for an industrial strength laptop these days ($600 ~ $700); within a month, a student worthy laptop will be $250 - $500 - every American student should be issued a new one every four grades or so. There's no excuse (and I mean none) that kids in Africa and South America will be computing while our students are held hostage to blackboard lectures. Schools need to budget for and instrument our teachers and classrooms with this stuff.

As for my progress - so far - so good. More later.

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