Sunday, January 13, 2008

Little Inexpensive Computers

I have been following, with interest, the One Laptop per Child (OLPC) initiative and am looking forward to receiving one soon (Canadians were put on the back of the bus, it seems, for Give One Get One deliveries).

Then I saw Tim Hawes' Asus Eee PC, running CLIPS, and and generally handling everything, except perhaps fat fingers, thrown at it during Will Richardson's workshop in London.

Intel, on and now off the OLPC board, has its own offering, the Classmate PC.

Today, in Vicki Davis' RSS feed, I found Kathy Schrock's post about Mobile Internet Devices in which she mentions the Everex Cloudbook.

Look at the specs for this computer, soon to be sold at (do I really need to add a link?). I wonder if will offer it too.

9 Inches, 2 pounds, 5 hours of battery life. Surf, email, blog, IM, Skype, compute. Cloud computing makes it simple and easy for everyone.

Based on the latest gOS Rocket operating system, the ultra-mobile Everex PC comes with popular applications from Google, Mozilla, Skype, and more.

Find your $399 CloudBook at beginning 1/25/08

Additional Preinstalled and Linked Software

Mozilla Firefox, gMail, Meebo, Skype, Wikipedia, GIMP, Blogger, YouTube, Xing Movie Player, RythemBox, Faqly, Facebook and 2.3 (includes WRITER, IMPRESS, DRAW, CALC, BASE)

Hardware Specifications
1.2GHz, VIA C7®-M Processor ULV, 512MB DDR2 533MHz, SDRAM, 30GB Hard Disk Drive, 7" WVGA TFT Display (800 x 480), VIA UniChrome Pro IGP Graphics, VIA High-Definition Audio, 802.11b/g, (1) 10/100 Ethernet Port, (1) DVI-I Port, (2) USB 2.0 Ports, (1) 4-in1 Media Card Reader, (1) 1.3MP Webcam, (1) Headphone/Line-Out Port, (1) Microphone/Line-In Port, (1) Set of Stereo Speaker, (1) Touchpad, (1) 4-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery

Everex CloudBook CE1200V

Get involved with the Open Source community! Join Everex and FOSS partners gOS, Koolu, OpenMoko, OpenOffice, ZaReason, Zonbu and more.. Email customerservice [at] everex [dot] com for more info.
You get the feeling that Open Source is going mainstream and that small, connected devices might actually be closer to being commonplace among students. Now imagine if they were actually allowed to use them at school!


Ross Isenegger said...

Doug Peterson posted the following at the cross-listed version of this post:

You have received a comment from Doug Peterson on your blog post 'Little
Inexpensive Computers'. It reads as follows:

I find the North American specifications really interesting. The
NA models assume the traditional networking and access to sufficient
electricity enough to include hard drives.

Are we ready for Linux on
school desktops?

Will Microsoft let it happen?

Ross Isenegger said...

Another crosslisted post from Geoff Day:

I find the whole project fascinating - it has changed things already hence the many smaller machines appearing (I may be giving them too much credit!) It is interesting that they are "distilled computers" - the essence of what computers can do is within them PLUS the ability to add what the user feels they need.

I still feel the OLPC machine is beyond the rest - it is the only one that has "Apple Roots" by being so innovative in so many ways yet "Open Windows" for the user. The others have gone the more traditional routes in form.

I think it also comes with a hidden curriculum for education. It is re-visiting the work of Papert and putting the power back into the personal computer - more power for the user. What an exciting thought. I see it as having the potential for a creative leap in our understanding of learning and the role of creativity in our lives. A dreamer you say?

Ross Isenegger said...

Doug's Reply:

You make so much sense, Geoff. I look forward to the day of ubiquity.

Is "distilled computers" copyrighted? I could see myself using it!

Imagine buying a computer that just works and doesn't come with baggage or bloatware.

Doug Peterson on Monday, 14 January 2008, 12:45 EST

Ross Isenegger said...


Monday, January 14, 2008
Howard Technology Solutions First to Offer ASUS EEE PC with Windows XP

Submitted by reader Johannes Haupt -

From TMCNet -

Howard Technology Solutions is reportedly the first technology provider to offer the ASUS Eee PC with a Windows XP.

Tim Beech, technical marketing manager for Howard Technology Solutions said the company is pleased to be the first to offer Windows XP on this platform.

He pointed out that their customers will now have the choice of using the lower cost Linux operating system or the more familiar Windows XP operating system.

Founded in 1998, Howard Technology Solutions, is a division of Howard Industries, a billion dollar, privately held corporation headquartered in Ellisville, Mississippi.

Ross Isenegger said...


A $460 tablet computer?...

Tuesday, January 15, 2008
Taiwan Vendors get into modding Eee PCs

From Digitimes -

A budding industry has begun to emerge in the Taiwan market with third-party vendors offering Eee PC mods to satisfy consumer demands.

One of the most popular mods adds touch screen capabilities (along with Windows XP Tablet edition) that support handwriting input. The total cost of the mod including labor is only around NT$2,000 (USD62.08).

Other mods offered add Bluetooth/3G connectivity modules or additional storage capacity.

7-inch USB interface touch screen panel module
7-inch USB interface touch screen module

The modified Eee PC
Modified Eee PC

Photos: Monica Chan, Digitimes, January 2008

Asus has warned that any non-official modifications to the Eee PC will void the warranty.