Aljazeera news article
Last year at a computer expo in Tunisia they came out with these cute little laptops intended for kids as a non-profit One Laptop per Child project. Now the organization will be piloting the project in Libya, expecting it to be completed by June 2008. Test models will be sent out as early as November of this year. It's hoped that in Libya the organization will provide: 1.2 million computers, a server in each school, a team of technical advisers, satellite internet service and other infrastructure.
The laptops are cute; small, bright green (not because it's the national flag's colour), run on Linux, and even run without electricity - using a handcrank or foot pedal when there is no electricity. The no electricity is a good thing because many public schools even in the capital don't have proper electricity in the classrooms.
I'm excited that Libyan kids will be getting the oportunity to become computer literate. It's also good for all those that have graduated as computer programmers and engineers from universities and institutes to be employed as teachers.
Of course the pessimistic side of me wonders how many of the laptops will find themselves on the blackmarket, and how will the children in outlying areas learn to use computers if there isn't anyone in the village or area that can teach them. Will students just waste their time on chat and games and forgo the richer side of the internet; research and the world of learning?
But pessimism aside, I'm looking forward to this new development into technology in Libya. Will we see improvement in internet services here? Will Libyans have a future as leaders in the world of IT? The possibilities are endless.
And hey! I've got six kids! Yeah! Do we get six laptops!?! I'm so excited! I can't wait!