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OLPC on 60 Minutes

Date/Time Permalink: 05/20/07 06:56:31 pm
Category: LINKS and Lists

I just got done watching the "60 Minutes" segment on the One Laptop per Child project. Much to my disappointment, the word "Linux" was not mentioned, and in fact software was out of the story entirely, except for a brief flash of a spec sheet which listed "Linux" as the OLPC's software. As far as an unaware viewer might know, the software running on the machine could have been AOL.

Bu-u-u-ut, at least a Linux computer got on the screen again. Uncredited, again... The OLPC website mentions free and open source software and in fact makes a pitch for its greater advantage to the user - no limits, you program the machine and not the other way around, etc. So at least there's a chance of exposure.

Beyond the pipe dreams and fantasies of marketing salesmen, this is how it breaks down in the real world. Probably not even the 60 Minutes team is aware of the concept of what an operating system even is, much less that there's more than one. What a different world we would live in if every system which uses GNU/Linux/FOSS proclaimed so out loud; and it would be a marketing effort that would win users without costing a cent!

UPDATE: Seeing as how we were kicked in the teeth by the backstabbing Negroponte who rode on Linux's coattails to gain goodwill and publicity before selling out to Microsoft, I have switched my opinion of OLPC from tepid support to hostile opposition.

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