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Classmate PC Case Study in Uganda: Solar-powered eLearningMaendeleo Foundation uses Intel-powered classmate PCs to give Ugandan children their first taste of computers and the InternetIn a country of 30 million where only 3% of the population can afford electricity, computer training was non-existent – or was, until one US programmer used his vision, skills and Intel-powered Classmate PCs to start a small learning revolution.CHALLENGES• Opportunities for rural children in ICT (Information and Communication Technology).Lack of infrastructure and resources means computers, like the electricity to run them, are rare in Ugandan schools. Programmer Eric Morrow's vision was to find a way to overcome this challenge to give Ugandan children their first taste of computers and the Internet.• Maximize use of scarce resources. In a country where IT support is scarce and electricity even scarcer, portable, rugged, reliable and efficient computers are essential to ensure continuity of service.• Foster a skills-based economy. In the long term, Morrow hopes to model the success of India's IT outsourcing sector by stimulating development of IT skills and helping Ugandans create a viable IT services industry.SOLUTION• Classmate PCs to go. A specially-equipped vehicle provides solar power to run ten Intel-powered Classmate PCs from a portable Mobile Solar Computer Classroom that is used by hundreds of students..• Start with the basics. Students use a standalone training application and cached Web content to learn progressively more advanced skills.• Follow up for the long term. Because the Maendeleo Foundation’s classrooms are mobile, teachers can regularly visit a number of schools, allowing students to build upon earlier lessons and build long-term interest in the technology.Read the full Classmate PC Case study in Uganda: Solar-powered eLearning.
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