[iDC] One Laptop Per Child - MIT/Negroponte Initiative

Alexis Turner subbies at redheadedstepchild.org
Sat Jan 5 02:44:33 UTC 2008

Well, I'm certainly glad to hear that you did not mean what I interpreted, but 
that does still leave me with one question:

::2: Do the target schools have already proven, solid learning models that 
::ALREADY INCLUDE computer learning models?  No, or else OLPC would not target 
::I am not saying that the imperialist technocrats need to come in and 
::"correct" the villagers, I am saying that we need to prevent ourselves from 
::acting in just such a fashion - to thoughtfully examine the local culture, 
::curriculum,, resources, support infrastructure, and devise the most logical 
::method of using these tools, rather than coming in with pith helmets, hand 
::out OLPCs and expect this to automatically transform the society.
::No, I think it's up to Negroponte to prove HE can do it right.

Why is what to do with the computers/how to use them/how to incorporate them 
into the curriculum/etc up to us (and by "us," I am referring to the West, 
intellectuals, Negroponte, etc) and not the governments and cultures that 
purchased the computers?  

Clearly the countries 
involved felt they could use the computers or they wouldn't have paid as much as 
they did for them.  So, to that end, why do we - or Nicholas Negroponte, if you 
prefer - have any more <strike>obligation</strike> *right* past this point to 
elucidate any further what the best way to use them is?  It really does seem to 
me that the people who will know best what to do with them are the locals, who 
are already thoughtfully aware of the local culture, curriculum, resources, and 
support infrastructre, far, far moreso than any of us with the pith helmets.  
Those people could include the members of the communities receiving them, but 
they could also be government officials, internal academics, native-born IT 
geeks, or local teachers.

I don't believe Negroponte was supplying a method.  He was supplying a tool.  I 
think there is a big difference.  When I think of the introduction of 
outside methods, I think of:


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