You've probably heard about One Laptop Per Child. It's an organization started many years ago in hopes of providing cheaper, low-end notebooks to students around the world by selling them in bulk to governments. It never really blossomed like they hoped, but the company is still around and still making machines, albeit at slightly higher-than-anticipated prices. But now, a new nonprofit company is attempting to do something similar with Amazon's Kindle. You could argue that teaching kids to read is equally as important as teaching them computer skills, but this one is a bit more tricky.
And less tricky, if you think about it. Worldreader doesn't actually have to build the products that they are hoping to distribute. Instead, they are doing a series of trial runs in Ghana, hoping to get Amazon's famous e-reader device out to developing nations. The company was founded by David Risher, an Amazon senior VP that was said to be "responsible for growing the company’s operations beyond books."
Plans about long-term distribution are still forming, but they already have an agreement with Ghana's government to "roll the project out more widely and is trying to raise money now to fund another trial this fall." The study will actually take a look at whether having a Kindle boosts the amount of books youth read over a school year, and the test will initially include 300 junior and high school students.
We're obviously big fans of this initiative, and we certainly hope it works out for them. And with global 3G, they should also be able to download new books wirelessly when there's a cell tower around.