The last two weeks have been a blur, first at the Chicago SqueakFest conference, then
hammering out the details for the St John pilot. My calve muscles are sore from
all the pacing on the portable phone I've been doing
In Chicago, we saw many examples from around the world of exactly the kind of program we're proposing. We
met people from Japan, Korea, Columbia, Brazil, Nepal, and even Illinois It's one thing to read about
constructionism and Squeak, quite another to see children using it on video, or hear the excitement of
teachers as they relay their experiences.
We also got to meet Alan Kay, Kim Rose, and many others from Viewpoints Research Institute, the makers of
Squeak ... the tool we'll be using in St John for the pilot.
They put us in touch with the folks from OLPC. At this point, the good news is that they're considering
it. We had two strikes against us ... 1) the current minimum order is 250,000, and 2) the USVI isn't a
"country". Sounds like we're past those two strikes and are now waiting to hear about availability of laptops.
Also, we've finished the USVI proposal and are waiting to hear back from them.
Nothing is certain at this point.
Stay tuned, and imagine in your mind the two greenlights we need: one from OLPC about the laptops,
the other from the USVI about the pilot. We likely won't hear anything definite for a while.
Watch this video. It makes a good pragmatic case for why laptops will connect better with kids.
Just got back from a weekend trip to the San Fransisco bay area, most of which was spent
waiting around in airports, reading Seymour Papert's book "Mindstorms."
I've added a page for Papert on the wiki, and will collect quotes as they leap out at me.
Today I talked with Lee, who just joined the mailing list. He works at Red Hat, which is one of
the companies sponsoring One Laptop Per Child. They're developing a lot of the software that runs the laptop.
He's gonna find out who I can talk to about getting 20 to 50 OX laptops for the pilot program this fall.
Keep your fingers crossed
Last month, I lucked into twenty serendipitous talks while vacationing on Saint John.
Each of the [people] I met added their voice to an emerging vision of education, Caribbean-style.
What began as mere ripples of thought has since gathered considerable momentum with further research.
We're at the jumping off spot ... we're ready to begin Project Waveplace.