[LMB] OT: sort-of -- Internet/computer access for the poor

Agnes Charrel-Berthillier agnes at charrel.net
Fri Sep 23 19:45:34 BST 2011

On 9/22/11 11:19 AM, Claire Nollet wrote:
> I think that in a really bad neighborhood, where the families of these kids
> are all drug addicts, that even ugly computers would get stolen by the
> addicts, even if they only brought a dollar or two on the black market.

So would a stack of ugly paperbacks.

The biggest issue right now is that computing devices obsolete too fast 
for prices to really go down. You can get a first gen iPhone (which is 4 
years old) for a decent price, and they are fairly popular as kids' toys 
around here (if only because they make for a decent camera with a 
comparatively huge viewing screen), but it has been a year since Apple 
discontinued further OS updates on that hardware, meaning that most 
recent apps won't install.

Jailbreaking and open source software would fix this issue, but that's 
not the way schools think.

Which is why after toying a while with ideas for technological projects 
our PTA [1] finally sank half of its capital reserve into... new books 
for the school library.


[1] For non-USAns, the local Parents Teachers Association, which in the 
US fundraises and coordinate volunteer efforts to palliate lacks in 
public schools.

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