One Laptop per Child – Better than an iPhone?

The One Laptop per Child program has had somewhat of a rocky ride, it was envisaged that they would cost $100 and be made available to all school age children in developing countries. However they’re costing $200 and the orders have not been flooding in from the governments of developing countries. They’re now not known as the $100 laptop and are called the XO.

However these things do appear to be amazing devices, a review in laptop magazine mused that they are more revolutionary than the iPhone. Now I have a bunch of macs around the house and am a big fan of apple products, but I think the XO which can be dropped, withstand 120F temperatures and hase a great mesh network and some nice looking collaboration software designed to connect kids in devloping countries has to be better than a phone, even one made by apple.

Although the XO is intended for developing countries, many people in the US were interested so they came up with another innovative idea, if you want to buy one you need to give one. Reading my good friend Alvin’s blog I saw his had arrived and I look forward to seeing how his kids get along with it. Alvin has done a good job of introducing his kids to all kinds of tech gear; computers, photography and he even tought his daughter how to DJ so they should pick the XO up pretty quick.

So I just decided to Give One Get One, the program has been extended until the end of the year so you still have a few days left if you’re interested.

UPDATE:

I see a great comparison of the OLPC, Kimble and iPhone by Mike Hendrickson on O’Reilly

Friday Night Writes

My primary reason for starting this blog was to discuss issues customers asked me a lot at about at Open World and on various forums. My rationale being that if I blog about our products we might help people understand them and a) Make informed choices implementing them, get more value from them and maybe log less support calls and bugs for us to look at; b) Learn how people use our apps, or why they can’t use them and be in a position to engineer better apps. What I didn’t have in mind was being able to sound off about whatever I want to on a Friday night and people actually read it and link to it from other blogs, which is dangerous because it just encourages me. I was also encouraged this week reading Meg’s girl on a rant, nice to see other people getting things off their chest too. The last few days I’ve been thinking about what I wrote about Google last week. Why? Because on Monday I was asked by Terrance if I could go to the Google office and talk to them about Intercompany. Doh! My first question was, Continue reading “Friday Night Writes”

Is Google Just an Oracle Wannabee?

I was surprised that my pondering if Oracle was cool again got so much attention, the piece from turning around my comment to ask if Oracle is as cutting edge and risk taking as google I think was intentionally provocative, but I’ll bite.

web20title.jpgSo what do Google and Oracle do, where do they make money? Oracle sells software and associated services to enterprises, a company thinks Oracle software can improve the way they run their business so they pony up for the license fee. I see Google as more like a broadcaster, like TV and radio stations they provide content that attracts viewers who they advertise to. When internet habits change and traffic moves to other sites, google need to own those sites to keep their ratings up. Continue reading “Is Google Just an Oracle Wannabee?”

Is Oracle Cool Again?

designer2000I joined Oracle UK in 1997 when Oracle 8 was just out to a lot of buzz. I had written a College paper on Designer 2000, which in 1995 sounded futuristic; automatic code generation and reverse engineering of code was a hot topic around then. All in all it felt pretty good to be joining Oracle and many of my college friends were impressed, especially as I was joining product development. Things went well, I learned a lot, 8i came out, I was involved in building 11i which was on the latest tools and then I moved out to the US in 2000 at the height of the dot com boom.49 Zoe Continue reading “Is Oracle Cool Again?”

Cleaning Out My Closet

I am moving up in the Oracle World. Yes, after 6 years on the 12th floor in Oracle HQ, today I moved up to the newly refurbished 16th floor in building 300 (that’s the tallest emerald tower that says ‘Oracle’ on the top)

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This will have a real impact on my life in a number of ways, Continue reading “Cleaning Out My Closet”

Oracle Open World Nights

I live a few blocks from the Moscone in San Francisco I can hardly avoid it even if I wanted to, every bar and second rate resteruant (Yes you Chevy’s!) is packed out and you can’t get a taxi for love nor money. So I decided to blog not about what I did at the conference but the evening events.

This year I arrived late Monday evening, flying in from a family vacation in the UK and missing the AppsLab event at 21st Amendment. I was disappointed especially as it was me who recommended that bar to Jake as it does some of the finest beer in the City and I like hanging out there – Of course meeting Jake and Anthony from Appslab is always enjoyable.

Tuesday I was hanging out at the W Hotel and I stumbled upon a few interesting people from My Virtual Lab. They have an interesting beta available which I haven’t had a chance to fully road test but looks pretty useful at first glance. I also got a free T-Shirt, I normally shun ‘freebie fashion’ as frankly free T-Shirts are only fit for giving to relatives to sleep or work out in, but the My Virtual Lab dudes do have a very cool logo.

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Wednesday was party night, when we get to see which acts need cash this year, if Elton John is reading this I may get hit with a Law suit. Oracle employee passes do not get a conference ticket, which may explain to many attendees why the people on the demo pods are always asking if you have a spare wristband. The first problem was getting to the Cow Palace, the line at the Moscone was insane, so I jumped in a Limo splitting the cost ($40 – bargain) with a similarly frustrated dba – get there fast and make a new friend, I highly recommend it. The thing that amazes me about these parties is how I can see so few people I know despite half of Oracle being there – I suspect they see me coming and avoid me, but can’t be certain. Anyway I have to confess I left early, grabbing a big handful of Strawberries for my 2 year old on the way out. I saw a little of Lenny Kravitz, eat some nice food but there is a limit to how long I can hang around drinking Bud from a plastic cup.

I did go back to the W Hotel for a few drinks Wednesday and met a group of people who had just finished some financial reporting class in a college around the corner. When I was a student, I didn’t hang out in bars with prices like the W, a round there would have cleaned me out for the entire term, times must have changed. I was also surprised that there was anyone there not associated with Open World, but I had a great chat with one guy about the similarities between some of the Web 2.0 hype and the dotcom boom, even if some of the people there said they were too young to really remember the dotcom era. Feeling old I went home and decided to stay in Thursday evening and fall asleep on the sofa, blaming it on Jet Lag and not my age.

So the roads are all open now and life in SOMA gets back to normal – here’s to next year.