Another dot in the blogosphere?

Posts Tagged ‘edusave

I thought I’d highlight two trends: One not so new (OpenID) and another more recent (Netbooks).

Don’t know what OpenID is? Too afraid to ask? Read this wiki on OpenID. Here’s an introduction:

Imagine a web where you never have to log in again… OpenID uses a URL as your identity. The URL defines you. Whenever a site needs to authenticate you are who you say you are, it goes to the URL for that information.

Where possible, I use OpenID (this blog’s verified URL) to identify myself when I respond to my trainees’ blog entries.

On to the next trend. Mobile computing can come in different forms, e.g., notebooks, laptops, and ultramobile personal computers (UMPCs). My trainees would have handled UMPCs in the Classroom of the Future (COTF).

Anyway, some gaming-grade laptop computers have become so large they need to be hauled around in rollerbags, while others have shrunk to the size of UMPCs.

And now there are netbooks. Their use may be inspired by the “troubled economy”, but their low cost is a good way of putting technology into the hands of more users. But I think their rapid adoption is also inspired by the low cost computers offered by the OLPC programme and the Classmate PC. Both were created by the need to put technology in the hands of under privileged children around the world.

I’d like to see Singapore schools getting netbooks for every student. Each school has at least S$500,000 to spend over three years. Imagine each school getting 1000 netbooks at an educational price of S$400 each*. That would cost S$400,000* with S$100,000 left over for training, upkeep, outsourcing, sharing at conferences, etc. There is next to no need for software because of open source software and freeware, and there is a greater use of Web 2.0 tools too!

*Alternatively, consider a co-payment programme: Schools pay 50% or 75% of the cost while students/schools use their Edusave Pupils Fund or Grants to pay for the rest.

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