Idiocy of western world thinking

Its almost like fixing a square peg into a round hole. Get $100 laptops for underprivileged children. Make it open source, robust and kids in India & Africa will start learning! I am talking of the much fabled OLPC XO.What Mr Negroponte missed is a basic insight that in most of emerging markets, the underpriviliged see their children as ADDITIONAL RESOURCE to generate income, and pull out kids from school, or do not send them at all, forget giving them a laptop to learn. Why? Because they face the daily struggle of managing two meals a day.

The Indian Government runs a welfare scheme called Mid day scheme. The scheme uses free meals to draw kids to school. Parents do not object because children get one meal for free, and children get basic education. 120 million children have been covered under this scheme so far. It works for everyone: the parents, the children, the Government.

Mr Negroponte should look at scaleable solutions like the mid day meal scheme, instead of ivory tower thinking on the lines of OLPC. Funnily enough, OLPC has embraced MS Windows platform and hence will now cost $200! A good wite-up here


One response to this post.

  1. Posted by Ruchika on May 22, 2008 at 07:41

    so completely agree with your thinking! my biggest grouse with the west is the hurry they display to paint everything with the same brush!! “all rural is poor” and “all urban is literate”


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