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Finally Got My XO Laptop

written by John Chow on January 23, 2008

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Back in November, I donated an XO laptop to a child in a developing country. As part of my $399 donation, One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) sent a laptop to a child and sent one to me as a gift (it’s not really a gift since these laptops cost $200 each). When I made the gift, OLPC told me they would try their best to get me my laptop before Christmas. That never happen and I was wondering if I would ever get it. Well, Fedex finally delivered my XO Laptop today!

The XO Laptop is a piece of computing history. It’s not available for purchase anywhere in North America. The only way you could have gotten one was with that give a laptop, get a laptop promotion. The unit itself is surprisingly small and I’m sure my Pocket PC has more computing power. The keyboard is not full size and very hard to use. I doubt I would use this laptop for anything more than a conversation piece. It will go well sitting next to my original 3DFX Voodoo Graphic card.

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Affiliate Confession January 23, 2008 at 2:54 pm

Cool little laptop. What ever happened to the Ruff PC you were going to give away?

John Chow January 23, 2008 at 3:26 pm

I’m still waiting for Ruff to send it over.

Michael Kwan January 23, 2008 at 3:33 pm

I’m probably going to be reviewing both for TTZ, aren’t I? :lol: I can just picture the side-by-side comparison now.

Shaun Carter January 23, 2008 at 3:43 pm

That would make for an interesting review… considering OLPC claims they designed their computer for the rugged conditions of third world countries.

I imagine the reason for the small keyboard is because it was designed for children. Last I heard Intel pulled out of OLPC and claims to be working on an $88 laptop, which is comical considering OLPC is suppsed to be $100 but is around $200 still.

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:52 pm

Well it is $100 because, for $200…you get one yourself and so does a child :mrgreen:

investorblogger January 23, 2008 at 7:28 pm

Double your prices, Nicholas. :cool:

David Chew January 24, 2008 at 5:58 am

You could double up your prices. :twisted:

Gary R. Hess January 23, 2008 at 10:22 pm

Does it blend? :mrgreen:

MyBlogContest January 23, 2008 at 4:12 pm

Good to hear that :mrgreen:

Fabien of Small Fish Big Money January 23, 2008 at 4:43 pm

John, I emailed you a while back, I was asking a question regarding TTZ media, can I use it on multiple sites that I own?

I know this is not the right place to be asking but it seems to be the only place I can reach you.
My apologies,

Kind Regards,

John Chow January 23, 2008 at 4:51 pm

You would need to apply for each site.

Carl - January 24, 2008 at 1:38 pm

John I have been using TTZMedia and it still says ‘No Data Available Yet’ and I have not earnt anything.

Can I ask is it actually running? :neutral:

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:53 pm

Nothing as of yet…don’t think John’s received it off the company.

Honest Ed January 23, 2008 at 2:58 pm

Love the simplicity of the thing. It’s good to see webmasters giving back =).

Alan Johnson January 24, 2008 at 1:06 pm

I agree, it’s a great program for a great cause and it’s nice to see John involved and it’s also great to see that it’s receiving some well-deserved exposure here as well.

Alan Johnson

Rhys January 23, 2008 at 3:08 pm

I guess OLPC stands for One Laptop Per Chow now.

betshopboy January 23, 2008 at 6:27 pm

LOL! Good one! :mrgreen:

David Chew January 24, 2008 at 6:00 am

Nice. :grin:

Sucker January 23, 2008 at 3:08 pm

Yep, just kind of looks funny! I’m sure kids love it though.

DealFilter January 23, 2008 at 3:08 pm

I always thought you had to buy 2 and then they gave you one.

dcr January 23, 2008 at 3:11 pm

No, if you pay for 2, they give you 4. If you pay for 4, they give you 8. If you pay for 8, they give you 16.

Wait, that’s pizza…

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:55 pm

Well you buy 2: They give one to a child…they give you one.

How To Rule The World January 23, 2008 at 3:12 pm

hahaha… 3DFX graphic card… that is excellent.

At least to those who know about and remember the 3DFX graphic card =)

Zach January 23, 2008 at 3:24 pm

At the end of the video,
“Not only is it a laptop but a….Actually I dont think it does that”

hahaha priceless.

Chris Jacobson January 23, 2008 at 3:28 pm

That’s neat. Maybe your daughter can play around on it.

David Beroff January 23, 2008 at 5:43 pm

Exactly what I was thinking…

The keyboard is not full size and very hard to use. I doubt I would use this laptop for anything more than a conversation piece.

But it’s not intended for adults! :smile: Let Sally play with it; she’ll show you how to use it! :evil:

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:46 pm

Yeah thats a nice idea.

Webmaster Forum January 23, 2008 at 3:30 pm

Pretty nice :) Well done John

St Havok - January 23, 2008 at 3:38 pm

what a rip off

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:50 pm

You might think its a rip off but donating to good causes is always good.

If the roles were reversed…would you be happy with an XO laptop or none at all?

Not John Chow January 24, 2008 at 11:01 am

It is easy to forget that what one person who has a lot considers compared to one who has nothing. I think it is a great program and I think John should be applauded for buying it.

Alan Johnson January 24, 2008 at 1:09 pm

Exactly, there are a lot of people who have taken advantage of this product and the bottom line is that for every two laptops you purchase, one goes to a person who actually needs it and that should always be appreciated.

Alan Johnson

SEO Optimization January 23, 2008 at 3:46 pm

Well you could also give it to your daughter so she can plays with it (at least has a color that kids love..emm I love it too).

monetize January 23, 2008 at 3:49 pm

love the lappy tho’ the colors are really not that great.
Hurt my eyes starring at that green color.
But never the less, it was nice of you to donate a computer to through the program.

MyBlogContest January 23, 2008 at 4:09 pm

It just looks like a toy :cool:
Will you giveaway this Xo laptop ?

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:49 pm

Doubt it since he didn’t win it and he also mentioned a place to put it :wink:

dcr January 23, 2008 at 7:00 pm

You never know. The 3DFX Voodoo Graphic card might be in a box getting ready to be shipped to some lucky winner. :wink:

aspkin January 23, 2008 at 4:28 pm

That’s awesome John, keep up the great work!

lisa January 23, 2008 at 4:28 pm

I am wondering, you mention it has very little power,
is this the same Laptop sent to the child, and if so, what can the child who receives one do with it?
Is it of value for the child?

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:57 pm

Basically consider yourself as a child in a developing country in the 3rd world…would you be happy to receive a laptop that can connect to the internet regardless of the power it has?

Matthew January 24, 2008 at 2:05 am

It has enough power for the basics like word processing, spreadsheets, programming, internet access etc… It’s for education purposes and not intended to be playing the latest version of Halo.

Alan Johnson January 24, 2008 at 1:13 pm

Exactly, I am convinced that the people who receive them are very pleased with the fact that they can be used for such applications.

Alan Johnson

Fat Kid Unleashed January 23, 2008 at 4:32 pm

You should have a contest for it, John. Maybe some blogger could give it to his/her kid, so they can start their own blog. :lol:

Michael Hatamoto January 23, 2008 at 5:05 pm

I played with the XO during a couple of computer conferences in the Bay Area, and it definitely is a neat little gadget.

bob January 23, 2008 at 5:07 pm

Yeah that thing was such a failure. They would have been better off giving people EEE pc’s instead

Write your own paycheck January 23, 2008 at 6:14 pm

Hey John, I know this is a little bit off topic and all – but whatever happened to that “secret” project where you were working on another make money online site?

betshopboy January 23, 2008 at 6:34 pm

Yes I remember that “secret” project too, what’s the conclusion on that one?

And John also said he’ll give away his iPod Touch to a lucky person who uses his coupon code to buy a page on Million Euro Wiki. Haven’t hear anything on that too. Did I miss it?

sHy Guy January 23, 2008 at 6:23 pm

Whoa.. Give me one chow…
Cool design…

Nicholas James January 23, 2008 at 6:47 pm

Basically donate to the one laptop per child project and they’ll give you one.

Marc January 23, 2008 at 7:09 pm


Don’t know if you are aware that a lot of the design characteristics you find difficult to use are deliberate. Ugly color, low power, tiny keyboard makes it unattractive to adults to reduce it’s value on the black market. They don’t want them being stolen from kids and traded for a profit by putting them in adult hands. The design was well thought out to make them ideal for young kids, but less than ideal for adults. Lots of other design features as well, to keep them in the hands of kids and not adults.

Mike Huang January 23, 2008 at 7:15 pm

John, next step is to power it up for all of us to see :)


ImaNicePerson January 23, 2008 at 8:48 pm

The bottom line is…you helped some kid in a developing country. Good for you. Plus, you now have a “limited edition” collectors item which could be worth big bucks down the road.

Alan Johnson January 24, 2008 at 1:15 pm

I’m sure that being in profit wasn’t one of John’s reasons for taking part in this, it was simply a nice gesture on his part.

Alan Johnson

Danny Tsang January 23, 2008 at 8:54 pm

I got mine a few weeks ago. Its actually a pretty cool little system. It would be great for a young person. I was going to give mine as a Christmas gift but it came in so late.

I’ll likely Just have a contest and give it away on my site. Either that or auction it off on ebay with 100% of the revenue donated to another charity. What do you guys think?

Hafiz Dhanani January 23, 2008 at 9:15 pm

I’ve heard so much about these PCs! In fact, I was watching 60 Minutes and came across the project called ‘one laptop per child’, which intrigued me. OLPC’s mission is to provide a means for learning and self expression to the 2 billion children with little or no access to education by providing them with low cost laptops. The project in my opinion is quite remarkable. It’s great to hear that you bought one. I missed the deadline to get one myself.

Dan January 23, 2008 at 9:22 pm

Hey John. This might be of interest. I live in Birmingham, Alabama and the new Mayor here has struck a deal with OLPC and OLPC is going to sale/supply the city schools here with these XO laptops for all the students in elementary grades. This is the Mayor’s way of living up to his campaign promise of making sure all city school students would have laptops at their desk. OLPC is selling them to the city for $200 each. While these laptops do serve the purpose, do you think the laptops are sufficient for the classroom? I was thinking of something a little more “normal” for a laptop.


Gary R. Hess January 23, 2008 at 10:27 pm

It has enough power to go online, type some things up and even use a webcam/mic. That should be enough for elementary school.

rodel January 24, 2008 at 1:44 am

wow! …. i guess have to double time to reach $600 to buy myself a laptop.. tks tsk tsk.. :shock:

David Chew January 24, 2008 at 5:56 am

Nice. :mrgreen:

Nicholas James January 24, 2008 at 8:49 am

Either way…its pretty cool. Shame Intel want to make their own $88 one, they could have helped increase the capabilities of this one and benefitted the children…as they are the ones who really matter.

Carl - January 24, 2008 at 1:40 pm

Great gesture John.

I’m sure they will make good use out of it.

homemom3 January 25, 2008 at 4:10 am

First, it was very nice of you to help some child out. Hope they put it to good use, as I’m sure they will. Now as for the computer, it really does look like a kids’ toy computer….doesn’t it? Very cute, I know my kids would want that one.

Dot_Commie January 25, 2008 at 8:21 am

Why not send the kids some food and medicine, which is what they really need. Sending them a laptop is about as effective as sending Paris Hilton some designer jeans.

The good news : You can watch 2girls1cup from Zimbabwe and experience the power of the internet.

The bad news : You haven’t eaten in 35 days and your entire village is dying of malnutrition.

Poker Sharks January 25, 2008 at 8:30 am

Your analagy doesn’t quite work as paris hilton would probably like some designer jeans.

“Giving a starving kid a laptop is like giving paris hilton a PHD in physics.”

But still, i think you’re missing the point some what.

Poker Sharks January 25, 2008 at 8:25 am

I can’t believe I watched the video and you didnt even switch it on.

Next time you do a video review, try switching the product on so we can see how it works. Just twirling it around doesnt really work with technical items.

Haroon January 25, 2008 at 8:51 am

lol….thats the first time i have seen some one done video review without switching the product on.
That’s funny

Will January 25, 2008 at 11:23 am

The reason the keyboard isn’t full size is because it is meant for use by kids. That’s why it’s green as well. This way, people will be less likely to steal them and sell them.