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Intel leaves OLPC board

Intel leaves OLPC board

Intel has stepped down from the OLPC board after only six months, choosing to focus on Classmate instead.

In a move which can best be described as only partially surprising, Intel has announced that it is stepping down from the board behind the OLPC, or One Laptop Per Child, project.

The non-profit OLPC programme and computer mega-company Intel have split after only six months together, apparently because OLPC boss, Nick Negroponte, was pressuring Intel to abandon its own Classmate PC programme. The Classmate and OLPC programmes were clear competitors, with the important distinction being that while the OLPC was completely non-profit, the Classmate was very much a for-profit project.

Gee, when you put it like that then it may have been a bit conflict-of-interest for Intel and OLPC to team up in the first place - especially when you add in that the OLPC runs on AMD hardware.

Anyway, Intel was apparently not ready to throw away the entire Classmate PC platform and has decided to step down from the OLPC project completely.

What do you reckon to the split? Has Intel done the responsible thing or was it a bit sly of them to team up with Negroponte in the first place? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

5 Comments

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chrisb2e9 5th January 2008, 06:20 Quote
hmmm, one the one hand they can make money, on the other they dont.
I wonder why they chose to leave...
TomH 5th January 2008, 15:15 Quote
From the looks of the Wikipedia article, they didn't really have much of an involvement given the majority of the hardware being supplied by AMD (and Marvell-provided WLAN) so I'm not too worried about them dropping out. The main issue will have been the funding they provided to the project, if it was anything other than just the 'Intel' as an official supporter (I'm sure it carries a fair weight globally.)

I'd imagine the real reason was that they didn't want to give any support to a project fundamentally-based upon AMD hardware. Shame really, considering the project's goals. :(
yodasarmpit 5th January 2008, 15:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by BBC
"OLPC had asked Intel to end our support for non-OLPC platforms, including the Classmate PC, and to focus on the OLPC platform exclusively," said Mr Mulloy . "At the end of the day, we decided we couldn't accommodate that request."

He added that the use of AMD chips in the first XO laptops had not influenced its decision.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/7171201.stm
cebla 7th January 2008, 02:46 Quote
To be honest I am not sure that the OLPC project is really all that worthwhile anyway. I am not quite sure how giving loads of kids laptops is going to miraculously increase their education or help bring their countries out of the "third world". Perhaps we would be best of addressing some of the other issues that they face such as food, clean water and shelter before giving them all laptops.
TomH 9th January 2008, 17:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by cebla
To be honest I am not sure that the OLPC project is really all that worthwhile anyway. I am not quite sure how giving loads of kids laptops is going to miraculously increase their education or help bring their countries out of the "third world". Perhaps we would be best of addressing some of the other issues that they face such as food, clean water and shelter before giving them all laptops.
I don't think this is designed as a replacement for all of those things. This is more of a next step to development.

It's no secret that general use of a computer will increase ones aptitude in a century of advancing technology.
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