CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--A low-cost computer for the masses moved one step closer to reality on Wednesday.
Nicholas Negroponte, the co-founder of the Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, detailed specifications for a $100 windup-powered laptop targeted at children in developing nations.
Negroponte, who laid out his original proposal at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in January, said MIT and his nonprofit group, called One Laptop Per Child, is in discussions with five countries--Brazil, China, Thailand, Egypt and South Africa--to distribute up to 15 million test systems to children.
In addition, Massachusetts is working with MIT on a plan to distribute the laptops to schoolchildren, Negroponte said....
The original ZX80 was ¬£99.95 inc tax, It's worth remembering that 6 months prior to the launch of the ZX80 Thatcher nearly doubled the rate of VAT in the UK making the net product price really just ¬£87.
Even allowing for inflation the launch price would be ¬£310 today. That would still be quite an impressive price for a new product launch - e.g. the ¬£359 starting price for the mac mini.
ZX80s were $200, I recall. I think by the time they came out I already had a TRS-80, which cost around $900 w/ monitor. I taught myself machine-language programming on it (much better than at college).
Both had Z80s which are STILL AVAILABLE at www.zilog.com/products/family.asp?fam=218
Speaking of DVDs, this company provides DVDs of popular college or HS lecturers. Some are humanistic of course: www.teach12.com/teach12.asp?ai=16281
Rather than worry about software piracy, I think this ¬£56 computer strategy is designed to boost software sales and internet usage charges across the world. Same as with dvd's - the average dvd disc now costs more than a basic dvd player. If two people buy the pc and only 1 uses licensed software then it's still 1 incremental sale for the software merchants.