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April olpcMAP update April 10, 2011

Filed under: Volunteering — polyachka @ 9:30 pm
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April news from olpcMAP:

1. The demo of olpcMAP will be presented at the Boston New Tech Meetup on Tuesday, April 12, at 7:30PM.

2. Social enterprise venture: olpcMAP presentation will be given on Wednesday, April 13, at 7:30PM, at OLPC office:

   1 Cambridge Center, 10th Floor
    One Laptop per Child
    Kendall Square
    Cambridge, MA  02142.

Join us and 20+ others from Tufts/MIT at the OLPC Foundation’s headquarters this Wedn evening 7:30PM led by me and Adam.  Questions for discussion:

    * Why should we volunteer, and for what, over the course of our lives?
    * What makes volunteering around ICT4D / ICT4E (*) so incredibly challenging?
    * Is “DIY Foreign Aide” a voluntourist joke, or a material change in 3G intl development?
    * Where can community tools like unleash grassroots power in this decade?
    * What volunteers have managed funds+community to unlock their global volunteer experience?
    * What’s behind trendy corporate social responsibility / service learning leadership buzzwords?
    * With 2 million XO laptops distributed, how do volunteers actually engage to prove themselves?
    * What differentiates our social movements from yet another Twitter/Facebook marketing campaign?
    * How did Mike Lee (in attendance from DC!) build far beyond so many others cities?
    * What can the Mideast’s Arab Spring teach US–conquering our own fears–converting self-organized aspirations to proven opportunity?

We will raffle off a RED XO Laptop to the person who asks the most genuinely eye-opening question.  By popular vote when our Wedn April 13 event ends by 9PM!  But you MUST arrive on-time at 7:30PM as the 1st floor security desk will in fact close after that time.  Hosted in conjunction with Tuft Univ’s

3. The latest thing is the news page, that was just launched by Nick, and we already added some events and updates to it, including Linuxtag event by Christoph D. The main idea is to have one stop shop for all events, meeting, news, jobs, internships, for OLPC/Sugar community, and edutech community.

How it works now: you need to type your topic in the box next to post word and then create your name and message with the link to the main page or how to contact if applicable along with the main theme (from drop down menu). We will enhance it by sorting events in chronological and geo order. Add your event/opportunity now :

4. olpcMAP will turn 6 months old on April 22, 2011. It looks more mature, check it for yourself: 🙂

5. Finally, Nick Doiron is in Uruguay doing an internship for Plan Ceibal in Montevideo. He is working on getting an open mapping program called gvSIG onto the blue XO for 7th grade and above.  “It goes beyond the Map activity.  You can highlight all schools with <1000 students, or color each state in Uruguay to show the population density, or see how firefighters and farmers can use maps to make decisions.  The project has the support of the national Department of Transportation”.

Nick will be meeting others in Uruguay for Conozco School Tour from April 30- May 5,  and then the Summit May 6-8,  Already more than 30 people signed up and it is going to be a great opportunity to witness nation-wide OLPC deployment. Christoph D will  be reporting daily about the upcoming events in Uruguay.

PS Mike Lee and Christoph D are finalizing their own map jams in coming weeks, check for updates on


OLPC DC Club: Plans (Part Five) April 1, 2011

Filed under: Volunteering — polyachka @ 8:00 am
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polyachka: So what are your future plans with DC OLPC club ?

curiouslee: We would like to do a deployment in the DC area.

polyachka: that would be good

curiouslee: But hope for that has dimmed a bit because of the change in DC govt.

curiouslee: Also, XOs are relatively hard to get and there are still many barriers with Sugar.

polyachka: barriers like what?

curiouslee: The Sugar brand and information materials need an overhaul.

curiouslee: Running Sugar outside of the XO (which itself is hard to get in smaller quantities) is difficult.

polyachka: so what do you think is in future for both OLPC and Sugar?

polyachka: should they both re-think their strategies and become for-profit?

polyachka: offering services to the developed countries?

curiouslee: They would need more capital to restructure and then ramp up as for-profit. I can’t imagine how that would happen.

polyachka: but if they pursue the idea of constructivism, then it could revamp educational system worldwide

curiouslee: Constructivism is one approach of many. It’s not popular everywhere.

polyachka: why not popular?

curiouslee: Constructionism is not known everywhere not because it is not good. There are many other schools of thought.

curiouslee: Every country has entrenched beliefs.

polyachka: I thought that constructivism is not popular as not many believe that children can progress without much supervision

curiouslee: That’s exactly right. A lot of places approach education through rote learning and total control of the children.

polyachka: too bad, i still hope that right amount of education blended with technology can save the world

curiouslee: I hope for the same thing!

polyachka: why were you in Boston the other week?

curiouslee: I wanted to visit the Computer Clubhouse an attend the volunteer meeting at OLPC.

polyachka: thank you for coming

polyachka:  we all admire your DC club and Adam secretly wishes there was a person like you in Boston to have a big OLPC following in Boston

curiouslee: If I lived in Boston, there would definitely be a big group!

curiouslee: Believe me, there have been months where I didn’t want to organize.

polyachka: but you still did and that counts!

polyachka: Thank you so much for answering all my questions!

curiouslee: Ok thanks!


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