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OLPC Newsletter Autumn 2012

OLPC Newsletter Autumn 2012

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Published by: Mariana Ludmila Cortés on Nov 19, 2012
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Autumn 2012

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one laptop per child

Editorial Note from the CEO OLPC Hosts Rwandan President at MIT Entering the World of Mathematical Cognition Opening a Window to Cities OLPC Partners with Cloud 9 World Around the World One Laptop Per Child in Charlotte, North Carolina Uruguay Places Second Order for XO-1.75 Colombia Launches Largest Project to Date Honduras Embraces One Laptop Per Child Introducing the XO in Gabon Creating Affordable Solutions One Laptop in Ethiopia One Laptop Per Child’s Progress in Gaza and the West Bank Focus Reports Sponsors OLPC Fundraising Campaign Did You Know? You Can Easily Donate to One Laptop Per Child Online Designing the XO-4 Touch OLPC Partners with Neonode for High Resolution Optical Touch Screen One Laptop Per Child Community to Gather in San Francisco One Laptop Per Child Partners with University of the West Indies
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Editorial Note from the CEO
I just came back from a very interesting trip to Kigali, Rwanda, Johannesburg, South Africa and Tijuana, Mexico. It was fascinating to see a 9 year old boy in Kigali demonstrate, using his Scratch application, what he wanted to do for his country, the environment and to improve the health of his community, all with images, cartoons, music and a script. This was so moving that Nicholas Negroponte, who also attended the meeting told me “I do not have anything else to say! He said it all by just doing the Scratch presentation!” Before going to South Africa, I had the pleasure of delivering 11,000 laptops to the municipality of Itagui, a suburb of Medellin--my home town. An effort of many years was fulfilled and I felt especially proud of this delivery. 100% of the children of Itagui will have their own personal computer connected to the Internet with the OLPC pedagogical ecosystem in place. This is the first municipality in Colombia to reach this milestone. In Johannesburg, I attended, along with Richard Bernstein, our BOD member and Chief Legal Counsel, and Sergio Romero, our VP for Africa, an event by the Young Global Leaders, a unit of the World Economic Forum, related to the World Dignity Day celebration. They chose One Laptop Per Child as their project to sponsor and gave us the opportunity to present to the media and to key corporate players what OLPC is all about and what we are trying to do in Africa. From Johannesburg, I went to Tijuana, Mexico. I gave a keynote address to about 600 people attending Tijuana Innovador. I was impressed by the commitment of more than 500 volunteers who worked for 8 months in the preparation of this 10 day event. This quarter also brought the following significant events: The Government of Honduras awarded its first contract for 1:1 computing to OLPC and 51,000 units will be delivered in 1Q 2013. The importance of this project for us is that it was awarded after a careful evaluation monitored by the InterAmerican Development Bank (IADB), who funded the project. Plan Ceibal placed its second order of the XO 1.75 with an additional order of 60,000 units. Although Uruguay reached complete saturation of primary age schools in 2010, they have continued to place orders with OLPC as a recognition of the supremacy of the XOs for school age children. We are working with private and public sector partners for local manufacturing of laptops in three countries, with two plants in LATAM and one plant in Africa. OLPC Australia has placed the first order for the XO 4.0 Touch, which will begin shipping in March 2013. As we look ahead to 2013, we believe that the XO 4.0 Touch, which provides the functionality of both a laptop and a tablet, will be well received, especially in markets where a more rugged, repairable device is required. We continue to explore the development of a tablet running the Android operating system and are expecting to have an announcement at the CES show in January 2013, where we will also formally debut the XO 4.0 Touch. We are also considering an Android version of the XO 4.0 in the second half of 2013. While our roots have always been in the Linux operating system, the popularity of tablets is forcing us to offer an Android alternative. This trend is further evidence of the convergence in standards and specifications between developing and developed world markets for computing devices, which is also fueled by the continuing decline in the price of tablets. The partnerships we had in place have expanded dramatically. We are working with Sesame Street, Little PIM, and Common Sense Media. In addition, we just signed an agreement with My City Way powered by BMW, which will provide educational applications related to cities. While OLPC continues to advance the cause of 1:1 computing for children’s learning in many new and innovative ways, any success is only due to the continued support of our partners, sponsors, clients, and volunteers. On behalf of the children of the world, thank you. Rodrigo Arboleda

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OLPC Hosts Rwandan President at MIT’s Media Lab.
The visit confirmed President Kagame’s proposition of transforming his country.
On September 20, Rodrigo Arboleda, One Laptop Per Child’s Association Chairman and CEO, had the honor of hosting Rwandan President Paul Kagame during his visit to the Cambridge, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab. President Paul Kagame toured the Media Lab, where 350 plus projects ranging from neuroengineering to early education are being conducted, and also met several Rwandan MIT students. The visit was of special importance to OLPC as the XO project was born in the MIT Media Lab. To date 220,000 laptops have been deployed across Rwanda. President Paul Kagame was on a working visit to the US to attend several functions including Rwanda Day and the United Nations General Assembly.
Photo credit: Paula Aguilera | MIT Media Lab

Entering the World of Mathematical Cognition
One Laptop Per Child’s XO computer has been used to further research in the fields of mathematical cognition and cognitive neuroscience. The Academy of Science of France used XO laptops to study the acquisition of arithmetic concepts in populations that have extremely limited mathematical vocabularies. The Munduruku people of Brazil’s Amazon River basin were exposed to “The Number Race,” a game designed to evaluate and teach basic number sense. The study began in 2010 as the idea of Stanislas Dehaene, a professor at the Collège de France in Experimental Cognitive Psychology and a pioneer neuro-cognitivist. The Munduruku peoples were ideal participants for the study because of their limited mathematical language—they only have words for numbers 1 to 5. With XO support, Dehanehe and his team discovered that the Munduruku children and adults actually possess rich arithmetic intuition when it comes to adding, subtracting and recognizing geometrical shapes. Despite not being able to count past 5, the Munduruku people understood that the cardinal of a set changes when an object is added or taken away. Similarly, the participants lacked words for “triangle,” or “parallel” but grasped geometrical concepts such as points, angles, distance and midpoint. Replicating Dehanehe’s research among other populations could have a profound impact on the way that education is understood and approached. The utilization of XO’s in Dehanehe’s study illustrates another way that OLPC’s little laptop is transforming the world of teaching and learning.

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Opening a Window to Cities
MyCityWay teams up with OLPC to allow students to connect with all that is happening in cities worldwide.
OLPC and MyCityWay are joining forces to develop custom interactive applications for students globally. The applications will deliver relevant content and features to students about the cities they live in, visit, or simply want to learn more about. MyCityWay is a technology innovator backed by BMW and the City of New York, among others. MyCityWay is focused on providing real time, highly personalized and comprehensive views of the world’s cities for both residents and visitors. MyCityWay’s platform includes a suite of free mobile apps for consumers, and now covers more than 87 cities worldwide. Students living in cities will be able to share their day-to-day experiences with other students who will gain the opportunity to fully explore the buildings, museums, parks and landmarks that make each city unique. Students can navigate the cities, dig into the areas that are most interesting to them, think about how people influence the city and how it influences them, and dream about how they might live and work in a city. “We are so pleased to partner with OLPC in bringing our city experiences to students around the world. We first built our mobile apps to help us stay in touch with all that was happening around us in one of the world’s greatest places – New York. We’ve always wanted to deliver this as an interactive experience specific to students, and see the relationship as an incredibly important initiative,” noted Sonpreet Bhatia, MyCityWay Co-Founder. You can check out MyCityWay’s current set of mobile apps at MyCityWay.com/download.

OLPC Partners with Cloud 9 World
As part of OLPC’s initiative to offer third party content to supplement Sugar activities, OLPC has entered into an agreement with Cloud 9 World.
Cloud 9 World, an organization with a social mission, was founded by three mothers: Andrea Nachtigall, Lorenza Gonzalez and Maria Candelaria Smith.  Children today are faced with challenges in life that can be very difficult to overcome.  Empowering  children  to meet these challenges and  become happier and better human beings is the Cloud 9 World mission.   They have an  innovative way to help children  by  teaching and instilling values. The  Cloud 9 World  book  collection  encourages  kids to  accept and respect all ethnic groups, and helps create a caring community by developing positive social behavior. Engaging stories involving friendly animals, each representing a different virtue,  teach young readers, through dialogue and captivating images, the essence of basic human values such as integrity, honesty, kindness and creativity. Character trait education has been proven to  improve  academic performance and increase desirable pro-social behavior in the playground. Cloud 9 World books are part of a comprehensive character trait education program for elementary schools that can be implemented around the world.

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Around the World
Think globally, act digitally.

Charlotte, US




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West Bank and Gaza



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One Laptop Per Child in Charlotte, North Carolina
OLPC continues to grow in the United States as Knight Foundation commits to total saturation in Charlotte’s Project L.I.F.T. zone.
After a successful pilot project in Miami-Dade County, Knight Foundation has extended its support of OLPC by providing educational opportunities to students in Charlotte, North Carolina. A transformational educational zone, Project L.I.F.T. was created by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Investment Study Group. It focuses on the West Charlotte Corridor, a community where the graduation rate is well below fifty percent. Project L.I.F.T. (Leadership and Investment for Transformation) represents an ideal 21st century learning experience for students and their families. This project addresses the achievement gap between thousands of lowincome, minority students and the rest of the student population in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. Knight Foundation made the decision to join Project L.I.F.T. in June 2012. The Foundation focuses on community engagement and views OLPC as a great partner for this work. XO laptops are recognized as both an educational tool and a way to support community efforts for reform. Collaboration and connectivity through XO laptops will support project goals set forth by both Knight Foundation and Project L.I.F.T. Approximately 3,200 students in the school district will receive their very own XO laptop and rich opportunities to communicate thoughtfully. Beyond laptops, OLPC will provide ongoing pedagogical and technological support. Knight Foundation believes that effective implementation requires human capital. Therefore, they have committed to providing school-site facilitators as well as support technicians. An important component of this work will be the creation of various tools to support this transformation. Facilitators will provide rigorous and aligned lesson plans that will emphasize utilization of Sugar Activities. Various community events will highlight the value of the hundreds of Activities available free of charge. The 2012-2013 academic landscape in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools will look dramatically different as elementary school students begin to enter the classroom with XO laptops in hand. Knight Foundation, One Laptop Per Child and Project L.I.F.T. are confident that XO laptops will encourage community engagement and assist in the redefinition of effective teaching and learning.

Uruguay Places Additional Order for XO-1.75
Project Ceibal, Uruguay, a worldrenowned OLPC 1:1 project, has confirmed an order for an additional 57,000 XO-1.75. This order brings its total commitment to OLPC’s newest machine to over 110,000 units and total A U T U M N 2 0 1 2 O L P C A S S O C I AT I O N N E W S L E T T E R XOs ordered to over 700,000. Project Ceibal has been involved as early testers for XO-4 Touch.

Colombia Launches Largest Project to Date
The City of Itagui provides 11,000 laptops to children.
OLPC partners to launch new projects with many different types of organizations-- including governments, foundations, multi-lateral organizations, and corporations. In the competitive market of Colombia where computers are offered to children in many different ways, sometimes it is necessary to use new models of partnership to launch a 1:1 project with OLPC. In 2011, the City of Itagui matched a significant amount given by an anonymous corporate donor and the largest OLPC project in Colombia began to take shape. Itagui, located in Antioquia province, is adjacent to Medellin and is reportedly one of the most densely populated cities in Colombia. A committed municipal government realized that to improve the standard of living in the city, children’s education had to be a priority. Recognizing that the social inclusion and community development approach of OLPC offered the maximum benefits, several thousands of XO laptops were ordered. On  October 2, 2012, Mayor Carlos Andres Trujillo distributed the first laptops to children. A local OLPC team has already begun the technical and pedagogical training. A donor is being sought to provide an additional 3,000 laptops which will enable Itagui to claim the title of the only city in Colombia where every primary school child has his or her own laptop.

Honduras Embraces One Laptop Per Child
The Government secured a loan from the Inter-American Development Bank to implement a 1:1 computing project for children in public schools in Honduras.
In 2009, then presidential candidate Porfirio “Pepe” Lobo visited the MIT Media Lab to develop an understanding of the history, educational pedagogy and social purposes of OLPC. This visit reinforced for Lobo the importance of education to the future of his native Honduras. Carrying an XO laptop at each subsequent campaign appearance, Lobo’s key campaign issue was education for the children of his country. On January 27, 2010, the candidate became the President of Honduras with a four-year term to make his campaign promise on education come true. In 2011, the Government of Honduras secured a loan from the InterAmerican Development Bank to implement a 1:1 computing project for children in public schools in Honduras. In early 2012, a public bid was opened to fulfill the Government’s requirements for laptop computers and certain installation and repair services. On September 25, 2012, OLPC signed a contract to provide 51,000 laptops to the Government, once again showing that in a fair and open bidding process, OLPC provides a winning combination of durable laptops at very competitive prices, with the best educational applications. In January 2013, the laptops will arrive in Honduras and 90 days later, children in the most remote villages of rural Honduras will receive their laptops. A bid from the Government to provide the Internet connectivity is in process. Soon these children will cross the digital divide to the bountiful world of information that many of us already enjoy, along with their brothers, sisters and parents. President Lobo’s project is the first major government project for 1:1 computing in Central America and OLPC is pleased to be playing an important role. Banco Lafise, a multi-country financial services group based in Nicaragua, was instrumental in assisting OLPC to meet the requirements of the Honduras bid and its generous support is much appreciated.

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Introducing the XO in Gabon
First Lady sees OLPC initiative as a model for Africa.
One in 10 primary school children in Gabon will have the opportunity to engage in more collaborative, joyful and self-empowered learning through a new One Laptop Per Child initiative. Under the guidance of Madame Sylvia Bongo Ondimba, HE First Lady of Gabon, the initiative’s goal is to equip all Gabonese primary school children with the XO laptop by 2014. Madame Ondimba hopes that the project will act as a model for the rest of Africa. “Individual empowerment is the key to the future development of all of Africa, and I am very proud that Gabon will demonstrate that educating children through OLPC is the foundation of empowerment,” said Madame. Ondimba. The Office of the President and the Ministry of Education will also be involved. During the initial deployment of laptops, OLPC will provide complete technological, educational and community training to staff members, and will offer ongoing support on a quarterly basis to ensure that students are fully benefiting from the XO experience.

Creating Affordable Solutions
Long-distance wi-fi is delivered to a Madagascar island
The children of a Madagascar island have received affordable Internet access thanks to OLPC France engineers who figured out how to deliver it to their school via a longrange wireless connection. The Antitourna school is on Nosy Komba, a small volcanic island whose only connection to the Internet was via costly, often delayed, satellite signals. Islanders had no way to access the robust Internet service on the mainland, which is connected to the African Internet backbone loop by fiber-optic cable. The capital of the neighboring island of Nosy Bé, Hell-Ville, does, however, have good, affordable Internet service through a DSL connection to the mainland. Engineers from OLPC France set up a series of wireless relays to carry the Internet signal from HellVille, across the water 10 km (6 miles) to high ground on Nosy Bé, and then down to Antitourna, which did not have a direct line of sight to Hell-Ville. The antennae used to relay the wireless signal was the Ubiquiti AirGrid M5. It connects through a switch to a XS server at the Antitourna school, which in turn serves 160 XO laptops. Local teams based in the Nosy Bé and Nosy Komba area will oversee wireless operations to ensure that Antitourna’s elementary school children stay connected to each other and to the greater world.

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One Laptop in Ethiopia
The story of a flourishing XO initiative
One Laptop Per Child’s Ethiopian initiative captures the profound improvements that educational software can deliver on an individual and communal level. 519 children in Gamo, one of the world’s most remote sites, now have the chance to enjoy learning and sharing with XO technology. Along with studying basic curriculum, these children are also exploring local climate change, a topic that directly affects their lives. OLPC’s story in Ethiopia is one of dedication, generosity and collaboration. The project was funded by The Christensen Fund, an organization concerned with protecting biological and cultural diversity. Another Ethiopian charity called Initiative for Living Community Action (ILCA), which focuses on sustainable community development, took charge in piloting the 18-month project. Along the way, there were also key individuals responsible for OLPC’s progress in the country. ILCA jumpstarted the OLPC initiative when it decided to enhance education by establishing computer centers in rural schools. Dr. Tadesse Wolde, the Program Officer for the African Rift Valley Program of the Christen Fund, introduced ILCA to the OLPC mission. From there, an OLPC volunteer named Paul Newson connected with ILCA and worked with the NGO in developing clearer views on how to implement deployment ideas. Common procedures were used to set up the pilot project in the Gamo lands. Called “Primary School’s Laptop Project Phase I,” the initiative installed 1.5-XO laptops in 10 schools in 10 selected classes. With the support of communities, schools and the local government, the OLPC implementation phase went smoothly. The next phase of the project was to provide technical, pedagological and managerial training to students, teachers, school directors and community leaders. After the selected classrooms were set up with charging racks, the program was officially launched. While the Ethiopian pilot project is similar to other OLPC deployments, it includes a unique addition in course curricula. A club on climate change adaptation was involved in the initiative in an attempt to educate children about the causes and possible solutions for the environmental occurrence. During club meetings, children monitor and record environmental features that they understand to be climate change effects. As part of the program, students participated in planting 6,000 tree seedlings in school compounds, 9,200 tree seedlings in surrounding communities and planting vegetation on 3 hectares of once degraded hillsides. After the assignments, the children discuss and share their findings first with one another, and later in ceremonies that include members of the wider community. Valuable and applicable knowledge of climate change is thus diffused to the community, creating a greater educational network. An increase in climate change awareness was just the beginning of positive outcomes for OLPC’s Ethiopian deployment. Other outcomes include improved classroom discipline, decreased dropout rates and increased educational performance. Students also developed a noticeable increase in selfconfidence and leadership skills. The ultimate ideal outcome for OLPC’s pilot project in Ethiopia is to spread educational technology throughout and beyond the Gamo area. Evaluations conducted at the pilot initiative will serve to better future deployments. With the continued efforts of OLPC, its volunteers and support from communities and leaders in Ethiopia, hundreds of more children will be connected to brighter futures.

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One Laptop Per Child’s Progress in Gaza and the West Bank
With over 9,000 XO’s deployed in Gaza and the West Bank, One Laptop Per Child is advancing its mission to reach the most isolated and remote children around the world.
Since 2009, OLPC and other key organizations have been working together to bring XOs to elementary schools in the Middle East. In collaboration with the American Task Force on Palestine, OLPC made an initial delivery of 1000 G1G1-funded XOs to the Ministry of Education. In partnership with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, OLPC deployed another 6000 G1G1-funded XOs in Gaza and the West Bank. In 2010, 2100 XOs were set up in Gaza’s Rafah Co-Ed Elementary School, and an additional 500 children received laptops in Ramallah, West Bank’s Amari Boys and Girls School. In order to establish a sustainable educational environment, all XO deployments included a detailed overview of the OLPC program. Each program involved the development of technical support and learning content. More importantly, teachers and parents were trained to use the XO, assuring widespread involvement and continued participation among community members. OLPC’s ultimate mission in Gaza and the West Bank is to achieve XO saturation. None of the existing and ongoing projects would be possible without the contributions of PaleXO, a growing and energetic group of OLPC volunteers based around Birzeit University. PaleXO members have been working with United Nations Relief and Works Agency to recruit new volunteers and to establish similar groups in Gaza. Support from the Jordanian Hashemite Charity Organization and the Hope & Play Foundation has also been essential to the success of OLPC initiatives. Many children in Gaza and the West Bank have experienced war, poverty and marginalization due to circumstances beyond their control. Together, OLPC and these organizations are bringing invaluable empowerment and joy to these children through transformative educational resources.

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Focus Reports Sponsors OLPC Fundraising Campaign
Publisher’s employees selected One Laptop Per Child for four-month drive.
Thanks to a partnership with Focus Reports — an independent publisher of sponsored supplements for the global energy and healthcare sectors — One Laptop Per Child will be the exclusive recipient of a new fundraising campaign. The campaign, led by Focus Reports’ Selection Committee, began September 1 and will continue until December 31, 2012. To celebrate its 10th year anniversary, Focus Reports challenged its employees around the world to allocate a specific budget to a social activity of their choice. The Selection Committee unanimously decided to allocate money to a seed fund that would support a fundraising initiative for OLPC. Focus Reports recognized that more money and awareness could be generated via a seed fund. The first fundraising event will take place in Mexico City. As soon as the first $20,500 is raised, OLPC will donate 100 XOs to support an existing initiative in Sonora, Mexico, a country where Focus Reports has been very active. Together, OLPC and Focus Reports want to transmit the idea of using technology to provide education and foster empowerment around the globe.

Did You Know? You Can Easily Donate to One Laptop Per Child Online
You can donate funds for laptops to One Laptop Per Child online with Amazon Simple Pay, which allows you to give quickly and easily using the payment and billing information in your Amazon account. You can also donate any amount via PayPal. To learn more about how you can help, visit one.laptop.org/action/donate.

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Designing the XO-4 Touch
Behind the scenes with OLPC’s next generation laptop
The next generation XO laptop is due to go into production in 2013, offering the first touchscreen provided by One Laptop Per Child. In this article, the OLPC development team provides a behind-the-scenes look at the new laptop, revealing what features will be entirely new, and what good things will be preserved. Two models are currently in development: the XO-4 Laptop and the XO-4 Touch, a convertible laptop with a touchscreen. The XO-4 Laptop follows the tradition of the XO-1.75, the current OLPC laptop, but upgrades the processor and memory. The XO-4 Laptop has a longer battery life, and adds a mini-HDMI port to allow easy connection to monitors and projectors. The XO-4 Touch has all of the features of the XO-4 plus a child-friendly touchscreen that improves the existing display, sun-readability and repairability. Both models can be requested with a grid membrane keyboard or mechanical keyboard, which the development team calls “chewy” and “crunchy”. All touchscreens technologies are sensitive to dust and dirt to some degree. Neonode’s zForce technology is especially good at handling wet and sweaty fingers, which confuse other touchscreens and touchpads. No other company delivers a touchscreen that is childproof, repairable and sun-readable. multitouch. To make the user interface ready for the XO4’s multitouch capabilities, the team has fixed and improved the graphical subsystem (X.org) and the UI toolkit (GTK+). Other enhancements include support for gestures and better control over the look-and-feel of the UI, so that icons appear “just so” on screen. One of the most exciting features is the new intuitive text selector. Thanks to the newly introduced handles that allow exact positioning, selecting text on the touchscreen now feels like a natural task. The on-screen keyboard is also tightly integrated, preventing applications from taking away the keyboard’s focus when scrolling. Furthermore, several commonly known gestures like zoom, rotate and swipe have been added to the Sugar environment.

Sugar changes for Touch
The touchscreen hardware is, of course, only as good as its software support. Fortunately, the XO’s Sugar user interface is naturally well suited for touchscreen use, with large, clearly designed icons that users instinctively want to touch. The changes that the team is making to Sugar are simple and subtle, and designed to feel natural to both experienced Sugar users and newcomers. Icons are rearranged to provide better spacing, and ease of touch. The team is adding swipeto-scroll gestures (also known as kinetic scrolling) to show the frame, pinch to zoom and touchscreen-style text selection.

A “little” keyboard to go along with Sugar
Sometimes you need to type something in eBook mode, or want to type in a language that is different from the keyboard layout that you have. Sugar now includes an outstanding on-screen-keyboard called “Maliit” (“little” in Tagalog). Just as any other tablet, the XO-4 can be put in eBook mode and still offer the option to open a web browser and type in a URL or a search term. The OpenIsmus team behind Maliit has been working with OLPC to bring this best-of-breed on-screen-keyboard to the XO laptop and to integrate it with user experience. A lot of work goes into making sure that the keyboard appears at the right time, behaves and looks the right way. This little keyboard opens a window for people working with multiple languages and accessibility. Some multicultural regions need 3 different scripts on the key caps, but only one can be put on the actual keys. Using the on-screen-keyboard, you can type in your language in any XO-4 Touch that you get your

Touchscreens in the sun
Over the last few years, the development team has spent an enormous amount of time looking at touchscreen technology. It was a serious challenge to find a solution that would work well for OLPC devices, keep repairs simple, provide sun readability, and maintain general child-resistance and low cost. They found the answer in Neonode’s zForce. It is an infrared-based touch implementation that works without adding a new layer of glass in front of the existing Pixel Qi screen, keeping sun-readability intact. This approach avoids all the costs and complications in capacitive glass touchscreens. One of the complications is repairability capacitive touchscreens are glued and nearly impossible to replace or repair. The zForce IR touchscreen can be easily replaced and repaired. The zForce is also power-efficient Neonode has worked hard to ensure that the power consumption is so small that it does not impact battery life.

Internally, Sugar has seen a major overhaul that will benefit all XO users and unlock modern touchscreen features. This work is intended to provide a solid foundation for the coming years of Sugar development. The magic in these modern touchscreens relies on heavy engineering, and to perform it OLPC has joined forces with a team from Open Source Software consultancy called Lanedo to make Sugar work smoothly with

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Paint confusion: Children using the painting activity with the XO-4Touch check their fingertips for ink.

hands on. For users that cannot type easily, but can drive a pointer of any kind, the on-screen-keyboard is an accessibility feature that can be enabled on any XO, even those without touchscreen.

VGA displays (with an adapter). All are plugand-play style. Older XO models still support USB-to-VGA solutions, and the team intends to expand support for DisplayLink, which is a strong industry standard for USB-to-VGA.

Power and battery life
The XO-4 features a powerful dual-core CPU running at 1GHz or 1.2GHz, 1GB or 2GB of DDR3 RAM, 4/8/16GB eMMC storage (and

Good things stay the same
In the midst of all these changes, the development team is making sure that all the good things in the XO laptop remain in the XO-4 model. The child-proof grid membrane keyboard avoids choking hazards and has won the only “Children’s Product” USL certification in the industry. The power input allows charging from a wide range of power sources, including power sources that vary their voltage such as solar panels.

The team has been careful to preserve the sunlight-readable screen and long battery life. The microphone input jack still supports connecting humidity and light sensors to use them for science experiments and learning programming. The laptops still work in hotter and colder environments than others, and still work at higher altitudes too. For established deployments, it is also important that almost all XO spare parts remain compatible. Existing and new laptops can trade parts and share parts inventory to protect the existing investment and save money. New XO-4 motherboards can be used to repair or upgrade older units at a very modest cost. A new release of our operating system is planned for early 2013—bringing all the new software versions to existing XO laptops—so environments with a mix of earlier laptops and the new XO-4 can have an integrated user experience. When you open an XO-4, there are lots of things inside—most of them invisible, hiding in the details. Millions of engineering hours and thousands of sleepless nights from the team, work to ensure this is the right machine for the next generation. For the next few months, the team will be busy in the test labs, pounding keyboards and making sure everything comes together right on time for the start of production.

larger in the future). It supports a new battery chemistry (NiMH).

XO-4 - HDMI output to monitor
Video output to connect XOs to monitors and projectors has been a popular request. The XO-4 includes a mini-HDMI output port that can drive HDMI devices as well as traditional

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OLPC Partners with Neonode for High Resolution Optical Touch Screen
The new XO-4 Touch laptop will be equipped with a state-of-the-art, high-resolution touch screen that is both responsive and eco-friendly, thanks to a partnership with Neonode, the world’s leading provider of optical touch-screen solutions. The next generation XO-4 Touch laptop will still be rugged, cost-efficient and fast, but Neonode’s MultiSensing technology will equip the XO Touch with the highest possible resolution in full color. Even with a 300 dpi resolution, the screen will be fully visible in bright sunlight. The XO-4 Touch interface will respond to gestures, multitouch, and sweeps: Touch can be used even to activate the machine in sleep or off mode. Energy efficient engineering will enable the machine to be powered though alternative power generators. One Laptop Per Child is proud to partner with an organization that shares its appreciation for innovative and transformative technology. Neonode’s MultiSensing touch solutions will ensure that children around the world will have first-rate educational software at their fingertips.

Touch, a truly pioneering and sustainable device that shows the broad versatility of our technology. This market entry confirms that our MultiSensing technology makes it possible to create a top class product that is both affordable and extremely energy saving and still has a user interface that is radical enough to satisfy the uncompromising demands of knowledge and entertainment thirsty children. Our company philosophy is to contribute to a better and happier world, and we have the opportunity to do so by supporting OLPC’s mission.

We are honored to be collaborating with OLPC to produce the XO

Thomas Eriksson - CEO Neonode

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Courtesy of Zamora Terán Foundation


A U T U M N 2 0 1 2 O L P C A S S O C I AT I O N N E W S L E T T E R
Courtesy of Zamora Terán Foundation

One Laptop Per Child Community to Gather in San Francisco
Summit to focus on achievements and goals
Mike Lee, Creative Commons License CC-By-SA

On October 19 to 24, 2012, One Laptop Per Child members and volunteers gathered at the OLPC San Francisco Community Summit to ask the principle questions, “What have we done?” and “How can we improve?” The intensive summit examined the progress of XO deployments around the globe and examined areas — both technical and social — where OLPC’s educational infrastructure can grow. This past year brought impressive efforts and results to OLPC. Projects around the world have matured as XO training procedures and curricula development have been fine-tuned. OLPC has also gained important insights by conducting “helicopter style” deployments,

where children with zero XO training have demonstrated innovative learning using the laptop. Part of the Summit’s purpose is to offer an opportunity for people to reflect upon and appreciate the dedication of OLPC members and the transformations that they and the XO have delivered to children and their communities. New hardware such as the XO-1.75 and the upcoming XO-4 bring promising developments in XO software. Attendees of the Summit discussed how such improvements can best benefit children and their learning processes. The possibility of delivering an eBook program through the XO was a particular area of interest during discussion,

along with talk of building better evaluation methods to track a child’s usage pattern. Summit members also considered new School Server software, new ways to access the Sugar Learning Platform and new deployment and volunteering opportunities amongst other topics. It is events such as the San Francisco Community Summit that maintain OLPC’s innovative nature. Discussions at the summit will directly translate to an enhanced XO product, and thus a better quality of education for the citizens of tomorrow.

One Laptop Per Child Partners with University of the West Indies
XO initiatives in Jamaica and the Caribbean
One Laptop Per Child has partnered with the University of the West Indies (UWI) to establish 1:1 computing programs in Jamaican primary schools and across the wider Caribbean. UWI is a regional institution of higher learning in the Commonwealth Caribbean with four established campuses—Cave Hill, Barbados, St. Augustine, Trinidad, Open Campus, and Mona, Jamaica. OLPC will be working directly with UWI’s Mona Campus in Kingston to facilitate initiatives in Jamaican elementary schools. The first step is to prepare the OLPC Jamaica volunteer community by providing fundamental training in XO deployment. To ensure the quality and sustainability of OLPC in Jamaica and the Caribbean, ongoing support will be offered in all areas of XO integration.

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OLPC Institutional Partners
United Nations

Quanta Computer

How to contact OLPC:
One Laptop Per Child Association 848 Brickell Avenue, Suite 1130 33131 Miami, FL | USA P: +1 305.371.3755 countries@laptop.org www.laptop.org

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