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This is pretty much the biggest news of 2009 – I am going to email the OLPC folks confirm, but according to this article – The new OLPC XO-2 will be an open source hardware project… Just to recap what that means… the source, the schematics, the PCB files, the firmware, the CAD files, everything will be available and commercial use is OK. If it’s true, this is extremely exciting, I’d love to see the best company that can make these at the lowest price / highest quality flourish.

With the XO-1 now being deployed in the field, interest is turning to a follow-on project: the XO-2. This will be a $75 dual-screen device that’s held like a book. You can also turn it around and use one of the screens as the keyboard.

“The first generation is a laptop that can be a book; the next generation will a book that can be a laptop,” he says. “That’s the switch.

One important thing about the XO-2 is that we’re going to do it as an open source hardware programme. The XO-1 was really designed as if we were Apple. The XO-2 will be designed as if we were Google – we’ll want people to copy it. We’ll make the constituent parts available. We’ll try and get it out there using the exact opposite approach that we did with the XO-1.

Phillip Torrone

Editor at large – Make magazine. Creative director – Adafruit Industries, contributing editor – Popular Science. Previously: Founded – Hack-a-Day, how-to editor – Engadget, Director of product development – Fallon Worldwide, Technology Director – Braincraft.


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