Reuters reports on a conversation Bill Gates had about the $100 laptop being designed by MIT for developing nations.
“If you are going to go have people share the computer, get a broadband connection and have somebody there who can help support the user, geez, get a decent computer where you can actually read the text and you’re not sitting there cranking the thing while you’re trying to type,” Gates said.
(read the article)
I guess it’s hard for someone who is pushing his own new Ultra-Mobile Computer, and who has a $500 Million marketing budget for his newest software, to understand this project. Also, for someone with that type of budget, I’m sure his perceptions on money are far different than your average person. Meaning he just doesn’t get it because he doesn’t understand why people wouldn’t just buy his much better computer, not realizing that his cheapest computer at $599 is an ungodly amount of money to most Africans.
Alternatively, he could just be upset because he’s been left out of this project. It’s open-source. It’s got an AMD chip, not Intel (Microsofts normal partner). It’s supported by Google, which is very much a curse word at Microsoft.
I wonder if he sees this as competition of sorts? Does a cheap, mass-produced $100 computer threaten his industry in some way?