London-based Charity gives 40, 000 PCs a fresh start .... (an Ubuntu opportunity?)

John Levin john at technolalia.org
Sun Feb 6 17:14:18 CST 2005


On 6 Feb 2005, at 22:34, David Cartwright wrote:

> The following CNET article discusses the work that London-based 
> Computer
> Aid International has done to refurbish PCs for schools, community
> projects and non-profits >
>
> http://news.com.com/2102-1003_3-5563421.html?tag=st.util.print
>
> It has a target of 100,000 PCs by 2007.
>
> It sounds like a great opportunity to have Ubuntu pre-installed.
>
> Perhaps someone living in London could follow-up Computer Aid
> International to discuss the advantages of pre-installing Ubuntu on all
> future PCs it supplies.
>
> cheers ... david
>

I'm familiar with Computer Aid - did a little work there some time 
back. I believe their policy is to send computers without any operating 
system, or possibly something very basic like FreeDOS. There are good 
reasons for this - they don't know what the recipients will be using 
the computer for, they don't know precisely what hardware will be 
linked together, and the time involved in installing an OS.

Also, the boxes CA ship are very low spec, many with CPUs of around 
100mhz, which Ubuntu would unduly tax

The way forward for Ubuntu is really to contact the people actually 
using the computers - the many and varied projects in Africa, Asia and 
Eastern Europe.

This may sound a bit negative - I contacted them because of my interest 
in free software and was initially disappointed that they weren't 
shipping Tux around the globe, but do on reflection agree with their 
decision.

I would like to see if there is some way Ubuntu and recycling projects 
could work together; on our part, I think there has to be further 
development of 'Ubuntu-lite' for lowend systems (which is being 
discussed on the user list).

John





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