- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 15, 2005


This week’s World Summit on the Information Society in Tunis, Tunisia, will introduce a $100 laptop as part of an initiative designed to give computers to millions of schoolchildren worldwide who might not otherwise have access to the technology.

A working, but not fully functional, prototype is scheduled to be unveiled today at an event hosted by U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab professor Nicholas Negroponte, one of 13 faculty members working on the project.

“It’s a starting point to show we can get this kind of a system going with this price point as a target,” but six more months of research and development remain, said Alexandra Kahn, a spokeswoman for the Media Lab.

The goal of the One Laptop Per Child Initiative is to begin distributing the laptops in 2007, eventually reaching up to 150 million children worldwide, she said.

The initiative is a nonprofit group founded by Advanced Micro Devices Inc., Brightstar Corp., Google Inc., News Corp. and Red Hat Inc., all of which have donated $2 million.

The summit also will examine the progress on a plan to connect villages, schools and governments worldwide to the Internet by 2015. The plan was agreed upon two years ago in Geneva by 175 countries.

—Dan Caterinicchia

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