So if you don't know by now, in about a week I will be heading to Sao Tome for the One laptop per child (OLPC) program. OLPC is an international organization that believes that we can revolutionize how children learn through the use of technology.
This is the first year that OLPC has offered this program and it involves giving selected teams $10,000, 100 XO laptops and 1 server (to be installed at a school). They want teams to pick a country where they will deploy with the equipment and work with an existing non-profit on location who can maintain the program after teams leave. All teams are required to have a deployment of 8-10 weeks, one member of each team must attend a 10 day kick-off and training session in Kigali, Rwanda and one member of each team must attend a convention in October at MIT to present a report about the project. For our team Corey Jackson and Micheal Stein will be going to Rwanda. They left on June 5h.
We chose Sao Tome for a couple of reasons
Considered Sub-Saharan Africa
UIUC groups have done previous projects in Sao Tome
Connections with National Organization Step-up and Government
Personally speaking, I'm really excited to go to Sao Tome. I have always been fascinated with the implementation of technology in developing societies and how they can be leveraged to improve a peoples lives. I don't think that we will realistically figure out the proper way to to this but I think that the XO laptops are a good starting point.
More to come.....I have a lot of catching up to do... look out for random pictures and other random stuff.