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OLPC high-school release adds Gnome desktop

By   |  June 15, 2010

The One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) project has announced a high school-focused version of its low-cost XO laptop which includes the Gnome interface.

The new XO-HS version of the laptop, based on the new XO-1.5 specifications, will be able to dual-boot between an updated Sugar interface and Linux running a Gnome desktop. The XO-HS will also include a modified keyboard suitable for high school learners.

The XO-1 was the original low-cost laptop produced by Nicholas Negroponte’s One Laptop Per Child project and aimed at providing learners in developing nations with computers.

The OLPC project has now updated the XO-1 platform, releasing it as the XO-1.5 . The organisation says that the new XO-1.5 release is based on a VIA processor and is twice as fast as the XO-1 as well as having 4 times as much memory and Flash storage.

The first deployment of the XO-HS is set to begin in Uruguay under the highly successful Plan Ceibal in September. Plan Ceibal has ordered 90,000 of the XO-HS laptops for use in schools.

Stormy Peters, executive director of the GNOME Foundation, said of the new platform: “We’re really excited to be working with Sugar and OLPC to provide desktop software to children of all ages. GNOME’s mission is to provide a free desktop accessible to everyone. Children from Uruguay to Ghana will be able to use their XOs to learn and to show their friends and families how to use Sugar and GNOME.”

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