[design] Lack of built-in serial and // port ?
wad at laptop.org
Wed Oct 24 00:13:09 EDT 2007
You are ignoring the economics of the situation.
A full USB/serial interface now costs about the same as the
voltage level shifter necessary to interface to RS-232, due to
economies of scale.
OLPC is not in the business of shipping old, obsolete, computer
equipment to the developing world. We are in the business of
providing them with a high volume, reasonable quality, low cost
computing platform for education. And USB is the low cost serial
interface for anything being built today.
I love the old RS-232 interface as much as anyone out there, but
it is time to declare it obsolete. If you want to use some old piece
of RS-232 equipment, a serial cable with a USB adapter built in is
approaching the price of a plain serial cable, 'cause no one is
buying plain serial cables anymore.
On Oct 23, 2007, at 6:37 PM, Ian Daniher wrote:
> IIRC, there *is* a serial port, but due to constraints I have not
> been made aware of, It isn't exposed, instead it is buried inside
> the case.
> Sorry I can't help more,
> Ian Daniher
> it.daniher at gmail.com
> Skype : it.daniher
> irc.freenode.com: DyDisMe
> On 10/23/07, Samir Saidani < saidani at squeakfr.org> wrote:Hi,
> I have heard about the OLPC initiative a while ago, and recently
> I have decided to take a further look at this very interesting
> initiative... Here are first thoughts about it...
> I'm quite new to this project, and one thing that strikes me was the
> lack of built-in serial and parallel port. Why ? When you don't have
> a lot of money, you tend to use obsolete technology which are cheaper
> than the newer one, like parallel printers, serial modem, serial
> parallel scanner, etc ... This obsolete technology are easily
> on poor countries, because it's easy for an non profit organization
> to send this kind of technology that almost nobody wants anymore (at
> least the enterprises, and the schools of rich countries update quite
> often their hardware and throw the old one to the garbage or donate it
> to a NPO).
> So you can have the old tech for free, because they often end into the
> gargage while they are still working great. And this is not a theory,
> we have founded here in France a npo which locally is working to give
> One Computer Per Child for 0 $. We have already a lot of computers,
> and we are slowing down the process to avoid a computer hardware
> overload... Recycling is an ecologic approach to the environment,
> and it
> seems that it is a concern of the whole OLPC initiative. Recycling
> you to do things by yourself with little money (or none at all). I
> that there is a serial/USB interface, but I'm not sure that it
> would be
> as easy to use as built-in ports (possibility to lost it, unable to
> do it
> by yourself due to the complex USB electronics component...). So
> when you
> consider the target audience (poor countries, rural zone, poor
> I think this is a design mistake. Or at least it's reducing a lot the
> possibility of hacking and recycling obsolete hardware lying around.
> Maybe and probably do you have already talk about this matter ?
> Thanks !
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