in Projects, Programming, Technology

XO Review

OLPC Children

Before Christmas, I participated in the One Laptop Per Child “buy-one get-one” promotion. My XO finally arrived today. Here are some of my first reactions.


  • Like the size – some have said it is too small, but it
  • Like the Python App, will be a good way for me to learn
  • Easy to record a video
  • Seems to have long range Wifi capability, found about 15 networks in my neighborhood
  • Cool real time audio wave-form sampling app


  • Slow to boot and apps slow to load
  • Can’t figure out how to play any games with the screen flipped around (or as an e-book reader).
  • Mozilla Web browser slow – also screen refreshes were often clunky.
  • No streaming audio yet (Jango didn’t work)

Battery seemed to drain fastSystem specs for reference:

  • CPU clock speed: 433 Mhz;
  • 1024KB SPI-interface flash ROM;
  • Mass storage: 1024 MiB SLC NAND flash,
  • Resolution: 1200 (H) × 900 (V) resolution (200 DPI);

Complete Specs

My Atari 800Unfortunately, the most telling point in this review is that this blog post was written on my adult laptop. The laptop has a lot of great features that would make it more impressive in a group setting. While I was concerned that the sluggishness of the computer might hamper its usability as a learning tool, I remember my Atari 800. I know I would’ve traded it for the XO in a second – even without Joust.

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