Just got mail from St. Nicholas

He says — no kidding — that his One Laptop Per Child foundation is going to raise a separate fund to outbid the Gates Foundation when they launch their secret plan to try to buy up the hundred-dollar craptops, a scheme first reported here on this blog not long ago. Negroponte says he fully intends to win a Nobel Prize for this cockamamie cheapo laptop, and he’s not going to let Gates get in the way, and he doesn’t care how much it costs. If he has to spend five hundred bucks on every kid to keep that kid from selling his machine, so be it. It’s other people’s money anyway.

But guess what. A few little issues are starting to appear at the ragged edges of Nick’s utopian fantasy. Like in Nigeria, even in the big cities, there’s no electricity in the schools — not just in people’s homes, but in the friggin schools. No worries, says Nick, we’ll just run electricity for them. Er, right. And get this. A recent study found that in Nigeria the cost of buying one laptop for every child in the country will work out to 73% of the total Nigerian budget — not the education budget, but the budget for the whole friggin country. See here.

Nevertheless, that’s not stopping jolly old Saint Nick. He’s still zooming around the world, lobbying for the Nobel Prize and pulling weird faces, while his clueless MIT Media Lab professors sit around with their thumbs up their asses in Cambridge, drinking lattes and working grueling five-hour days and talking about all the cool features their little toy machine is going to have, um, really soon, definitely by the time we ship in June. Honestly, folks, trust me on this. Making a completely new system from scratch is really, really hard. Same for all the apps and other stuff. You can’t do it with a bunch of well-intentioned tenured professors who’ve never actually worked for a living.

Man, just look at Negroponte with those doofy glasses. Really thinks he’s the shit, doesn’t he?