16 Jun 2008

Rural school in PNG to receive laptops tomorrow under One Laptop Per Child initiative

7:34 pm on 16 June 2008

30 pupils at a school in the rural community of Gaire - an hour's drive from Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea - will tomorrow be the latest to be given laptops by the Oceania One Laptop per child initiative.

They join pupils in the Western Province of Solomon Islands in piloting the Secretariat of the Pacific Community's backed initiative.

The children in Gaire will be able to access the internet from their new laptops thanks to an Australian-funded project that is setting up low cost, solar-powered satellite dishes in rural communities.

The SPC's IT Manager Sam Taufao says 5,000 of the laptops are being distributed around the Pacific in an initial pilot for a scheme that aims to provide a minumum of 100,000 school children with laptops.

The laptops are being sourced from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and run on free open-source software developed by the university specifically for children in developing countries.