[BALU] B'ham on Slashdot

Brian Byers cbbyers at cbbyers.com
Wed Dec 5 17:45:41 CST 2007


Well, I had pictured the children taking the laptops directly to the
pawn shops.

Community disapproval works well.  If you need a good example, just look
at all the copper recyclers who go to great effort and expense to make
sure they do not take receipt of stolen copper.

I wanted to buy an OLPC, but it would not let me register a worthwhile
recipient.  Once eBay is littered with OLPCs, and the Birmingham laptops
are distributed to students and later pawned for cash, you'll never see
any analysis as to why the idea failed.  It will be forever buried with
the other "feel good" projects.

Distributing laptops to third world countries is about as useful as me
trying to teach cryptography to my cat.  He just wants food and water. 
Meeeow.

James Buchanan wrote:
> Well, that's assuming the country in question implements a particular
> security system the OLPC guys built in, basically making all the XOs
> they bought dependent on central authorization from the OLPC school
> server--i.e., if someone's laptop gets stolen, they can report it and
> the authorities can shut it down. I can't imagine Birmingham acutally
> doing this, since the mesh probably won't work so well if students can
> live farther than walking distance from their school.
>
> If the country in question decides not to implement the system, the
> OLPC falls back on "community disapproval" to stop the things from
> being stolen--basically, they're hoping that, since the laptop's so
> distinctive, it'll be obvious that anyone using one stole it from a
> child, and thus folk will be ashamed to steal them. I'd bet they'll
> quickly be in BHam pawn shops, working fine.
>
> JB
>
> On Dec 5, 2007 3:42 PM, Charles McNutt <charlesmcnutt at windstream.net> wrote:
>   
>> Don't get you hopes up too much. Negroponte said that they spent a lot
>> of time on security. If the laptop is stolen, lost, misplaced, or maybe
>> pawned, it will quit working.
>>
>> Charles (cwm)
>>
>>
>> Brian Byers wrote:
>>     
>>> This is good news.  In 3 months or so, I should be able to buy one of
>>> these Birmingham issued laptops for $100 at Pee Wee's Pawn Shop.
>>>
>>> Patrick Hill wrote:
>>>
>>>       
>>>> Birmingham City Schools will be first in nation to get $200 XO laptops.
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> Kind of ironic that they will be arriving on April 15:
>>>>
>>>> http://blog.al.com/spotnews/2007/12/birmingham_city_schools_will_b.html
>>>>
>>>> The article also states "Even though the computers are so easy to use,
>>>> Langford said a consulting firm has offered to train students in all
>>>> Birmingham schools."
>>>>
>>>> See you at Dave's tonight.
>>>>
>>>> -Patrick
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>>>>         
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>>>       
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>>     
>
>
>
>   



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