According to CNN, five hundred students in Thailand are going to be beta testers for the MIT Media Lab’s $100 laptop computer beginning in October or November.
Next year the government plans to buy one million of the devices and eventually give one to every elementary student in the country. MIT wants to distribute as many as seven million in 2007.
I still have my doubts about this and similar one-to-one computing programs.
I’m not convinced that giving a laptop to students will have the kind of transformative effect touted by supporters of these programs.
At least not without fundamental changes to the educational structure and curriculum used by most of our schools (and copied in many other countries).
However, it’s fascinating to follow the progress of this project.
And I’m prepared to be proved wrong.