Here’s some research into long distance data transfer over radio frequency, from university students in Auckland New Zealand, that could be applied to future OLPC deployments. They are currently preparing to compete in the final international round of the Microsoft Imagine Cup, which will take place in Warsaw July 3-9.
Team One Beep, made up of fourth year undergraduates Vinny Jeet, Steve Ward, Kayo Lakadia and Chanyeol Yoo, worked through the summer break to prove their idea could work. Their proposal was to send streams of data across the readily available FM/AM frequencies to impoverished communities.
Their project addresses a common problem encountered by the One Laptop per Child (OLPC) charity. The charity makes education more available to third world countries by delivering low cost laptops to remote and poor communities. They have distributed 1.2 million laptops already, and the number is growing. However a lack of infrastructure, such as broadband or even telephone lines, makes it nearly impossible to update the educational materials on the laptops.
Team One Beep intend running field trials in Australia and the Pacific Islands. Solomon Island OLPC deployment has made contact and is interested in collaborating with Team One Beep.