OLPC - Leveling the playing field
posted on Nov. 7, 2012, 5:22 p.m. by Arpan Chakraborty

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When technological innovation takes place in one location, it almost has an avalanche effect - it leads to the development of the whole region, with better education, commerce and quality of life.

On the flip side, it also creates a great divide between regions that did embrace such progress and areas of the world that were left behind - for one reason or the other. Technology grows at an exponential rate, and it is more apparent now than ever, with the cut-throat competition between companies to get the next game-changer out to market.

But remember that with each new version of the iOS, with one more megapixel added to your camera resolution, and with every piece of sleek medical imaging hardware being released, there are parts of this planet being left further and further behind.

OLPC and other programs like it - not to forget our own STARS initiatives - help level the playing field. These are examples of necessary affirmative action that everyone, everyone lucky enough to have access to all the awesome technology and the services they enable, must take to ensure prosperity and progress of the planet as a whole.

The observations from this experiment of giving out tablets without instructions only goes to show the potential for future innovators and creative thinkers waiting to be discovered even in areas with some of the most difficult living conditions. I believe it is also inspiring, and humbling, for anyone with the privilege to read this post and not think twice about it.

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