Tuesday, April 17, 2007

OLPC and the Future of Learning

The above is a video of TechTalk given by one of the brains behind the One Laptop Per Child project at Google. Although I'm far enough into the half-life of my university learnings to have a great deal of the geektalk in the presentation go over my head, I can appreciate/understand just enough to be thoroughly wowed. I also *really* liked the context that the speaker took the time to establish in the first 5 mins regarding how the root of the project is about Learning, not Technology.

The One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) initiative has been lauded and ridiculed by various groups since its inception, but it seems to be plugging along towards becoming a reality (thanks to the help of some very bright and innovative people).

All I can say is "bravo!". It's truly inspiring to see an idea as big and (potentially) groundbreaking as this grow from concept to an implemented product before our very eyes in a very short (relatively speaking) period of time. I struggle to imagine an effort that has more potential for fundamental change and empowerment than what these guys have bitten off.

I remember being deeply inspired, many moons ago, the following Apple print ad:

It's embarrassing how quickly time gets away from you and how everyday life pushes youthful aspirations to the side. Does it need to be that way? I'm not THAT old (yet), so why not embrace the old "pick battles big enough to matter but small enough to win" adage and try to make a mark (beyond "I saved company's money")?

Last weekend I attended my 4th FIRST Championship event. It was amazing as usual.

Yesterday, I emailed the guy heading up the FIRST Lego League in the Atlanta area. I'm going to do my best to "be the change I want to see in the world" (Gandhi).

Wish me luck.

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