Nicolas Negroponte, head of The One Laptop Per Child organization, on Tuesday tells the LinuxWorld audience in Boston that the inexpensive machine will use Linux, but the operating system suffers the same code bloat as Windows.
As initially envisioned, Negroponte's $100 laptops sported a hand crank on the side to generate power, but the idea was scrapped because the twisting forces would be bad for the machine. Instead, some form of power generation device, likely a pedal, will be attached to the AC power adapter.
The system will use a 500MHz processor from Advanced Micro Devices with 128MB of memory. It will use 512MB of flash memory and no hard drive, Negroponte said. The biggest remaining cost is the display.
The $100 laptop will use a dual-mode display with a black-and-white, 1,110-by-830-pixel mode in sunlight and a 640-by-480-pixel color mode otherwise.
The One Laptop Per Child association hopes to distribute 5 million to 10 million of the systems to children in India, China, Brazil, Argentina, Thailand, Egypt and Nigeria in the first quarter of 2007. Negroponte hopes the project will help supply the world's billion children with an education that undertrained teachers often can't supply.