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Intelligent Machines

Hack: The Hundred-Dollar Laptop

Nicholas Negroponte’s machine has a working prototype.

Founded by members of MIT’s Media Lab and led by its chairman emeritus Nicholas Negroponte, One Laptop per Child (OLPC) is working with industry to design and produce an inexpensive and durable laptop to be distributed to children in poor countries. The laptop is meant both to display many years’ worth of textbooks and to connect communities wirelessly with the rest of the world. From its custom-designed, power-­saving chips and displays to its built-from-scratch Linux-based operating system, the Hundred-Dollar Laptop (HDL) is a study in economy. India’s secretary of education icily dismissed the laptop this summer, but Thailand will test 500 units late this year, with an eye to buying one ­million. Argentina, Brazil, and Nigeria have also shown interest. Click here for our hack of the hundred-dollar laptop.

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