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Category Archives: Action
OLPC and Marvell announce the XO-3 tablet
Also: The first Marvell ARMADA-powered XO 1.75 laptop will begin shipping in March to school children in Uruguay and Nicaragua
SANTA CLARA, Calif. / LAS VEGAS (Jan. 9, 2012) â€“ Marvell Semiconductor (Nasdaq: MRVL), a worldwide leader in integrated silicon solutions, and One Laptop per Child, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping every child in the world gain access to a modern education, demonstrated a version of the much-anticipated XO 3.0 â€“ a low-cost, low-power, rugged tablet computer designed for classrooms around the globe â€“ at the 2012 International Consumer Electronics Show.
“We’re proud to introduce the XO 3.0 tablet, showcasing the design, durability and performance features that make it a natural successor for our current laptops, which have been distributed to more than 2.4 million children in 42 countries and in 25 languages,” said Ed McNierney, Chief Technology Officer of One Laptop per Child. “The XO 3.0 builds on many of the technology breakthroughs we made with the XO 1.75, including the use of the MarvellÂ® ARMADAÂ® PXA618 processor, resulting in a significant decrease in power consumption-a critical issue for students in the developing world.”
“Marvell is committed to improving education–and the human condition-around the world through innovative technology for Smartphones, tablets and a myriad of new cloud-delivered services. Partnering with One Laptop Per Child is one way we can deliver a revolution where it matters most-to benefit children in some of the poorest places on the planet,” said Tom Hayes, Vice President of Corporate Marketing at Marvell, and a member of the OLPC advisory board. “Marvell has been with One Laptop per Child from the start, and we’re doing whatever it takes to help the organization realize its mission of providing meaningful educational opportunities to the 500 million school-aged children around the world.”
Marvell and One Laptop per Child also announced today that the XO -1.75 laptop will begin shipping to customers in March 2012. Over 75,000 units of the XO 1.75 have already been ordered by OLPC projects in Uruguay and Nicaragua. Both models use the Marvell ARMADA PXA618 SOC processor, which doubles the performance of the earlier XO 1 while using only half the power. The XO 1.75 features a sunlight-readable screen, and all other features and design characteristics of the two previous versions of the XO laptop.
The XO 3.0 tablet will also feature the Avastar Wi-Fi system-on-chip.
It is also the only tablet that can be charged directly by solar panels, hand cranks and other alternative power sources
Other features include:
â€¢ Updated Pixel Qi sunlight-readable display
â€¢ Choice of Android or Linux operating systems
â€¢ Unique charging circuitry to support alternate power sources
â€¢ Choice of laptop covers, including one with built-in solar panel
Colombia’s President Santos on quadrupling Internet access nationwide, and on rural OLPC success
Last November, President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia gave the annual speech presenting the country’s National Competitiveness Report (pdf) – presented by the national Private Council for Competitiveness.
In his speech, he spends some time discussing his national plans for education, and recalls one of the great OLPC stories — the first OLPC program in Colombia in 2008, involving delivery by helicopter, no less, when Santos was Minister of National Defense. This took place in the town of Vista Hermosa, which at the time had recently been captured by government forces from the FARC.
Here is the story in his own words. It is worth watching the original video; Santos is a good speaker. (The whole talk is fascinating; education starts at 26:25, the Vista Hermosa story is at 28:55.)
Excerpts after the jump. Continue reading
e.Studyante : A new OLPC + connectivity program in the Philippines
Philippines has a number of amazing pilots underway. The grassroots eKindling group reports some remarkable success stories from their Lubang program, and have helped the province of Occidental Mindoro build on that success.
Now a new e.Studyante program in the Philippines, started in the Manila, plans to providing primary students with OLPCs and connectivity for the next 25 years. This program was started by P&G Philippines, along with Smart Communications (providing Internet connectivity) and the Synergeia Foundation.
e.Studyante recently launched at the Manuel L. Quezon Elementary School in Tondo, Manila. The program focuses on engaging education, supported by technology: it distributes XOs to students, provides other tools and training for teachers, and includes vetting and updating educational software and materials. It aims to make learning “fun, empowering, relevant, and easier” for kids, and to reach 1 million primary students by its 100th anniversary in 24 years – roughly 40,000 a year.
Chad Sotelo, P&Gâ€™s Country Marketing Manager, explained:
â€œWe intend for this to complement traditional learning methods and tools instead of competing with them… A laptop and Internet connectivity becomes [their] window to the worldâ€™s knowledge and places it at their fingertips in real-time. People and places they had no access to before are now within their reach. These tools expand their horizons and minds and encourage them to dream and attain a brighter future.â€
The program is funded in part through the sale of P&G promo packs, at retail outlets across the country; part of the price of each pack goes to the program.
A successful Contributors Program project: Rehnuma School in Karachi
If you haven’t seen this blog and this YouTube video from the OLPC Contributors Program project run by Talat Kahn and Carol Ruth Silver in Pakistan, you need to check it out! Watch the video and explore some of the creative ways the teachers and students are using XOs in their school.
This began as a 10 XO Contributors Program project and I was privileged to be their mentor. (Since then they found funding for over 100 XOs and are looking to grow.) And their class experiences and blog have been an inspiration to other teachers around the world. I did give them some help getting started and a couple of “lessons” via Skype, but after that, they ran with it! Notice the enthusiastic local community involvement that has helped make this project the success that it is.
P.S. Carol and Talat are members of the OLPC San Francisco Community. They are also the ones that introduced many of us (myself included) to the Khan Academy videos. We all learn from each other!
Powerful ideas in Brazil: Etoys authoring and conceptual development
Etoys is one of the most powerful tools on the XO — in terms of what it can do, how flexibly it can be used, and how it helps guide and facilitate thinking. This blog post from long-time OLPCer Sylvia Kist shows some of the research that has been done with children and Etoys on the XO.
Can programming on Squeak Etoys on the XO laptop help students develop concepts about the Big Bang theory? Or about phenomena such as the Lunar Eclipse? About breast cancer?
Working with Brazilian children and investigating their production, researchers from the Laboratory of Cognitive Studies of the Institute of Psychology of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (LEC/UFRGS) have been examining the potential of programming activity on Squeak Etoys for authoring and conceptual development.
This past November, part of this investigation was presented in a paper at the XXII Brazilian Symposium on Computer in Education (SBIE) and XVII Workshop on Informatics at School (WIE) in Aracaju (SE/Brazil), awarded as one of the best papers of the event. The work context was the trial of the Brazilian federal program One Computer per Student (PROUCA) in Porto Alegre, one of the five experiments of the first phase of the project, coordinated by LEC/UFRGS, in which XO laptops were adopted. Â (More details after the jump.)