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Smelena
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13 Oct 2008, 9:29 pm

We are going to buy a mini-laptop (sorry, don't know technical name for it) for my 8 year old to use at school.

Do you recommend a particular brand? I've had a look in the shops but they all look the same to me. We want one that is reliable and will withstand our 8 year old!

The paediatrician has recommended alphasmart.

Thanks!
Helen



z0rp
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13 Oct 2008, 11:34 pm

Get the Asus EeePC.



ValMikeSmith
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13 Oct 2008, 11:46 pm

I don't know what you expect it to do or why you want or need one.
There are a lot of junk toys out there that look like laptops, just like there are toy cell phones that ring and say "hello", maybe they sing alphabet songs or whatever.

Alphasmart started out as a word processor, although it might be more like a PDA (palm-pilot) now.

The one-laptop-per-child project seems not to be finished. Microsoft apparently offers exceptions to their discontinuation of Windows XP only for those, since their low cost goal would otherwise favor LINUX. I have never even seen one of these 1LPC's:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EEEPC



lau
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14 Oct 2008, 12:06 pm

ValMikeSmith wrote:
I don't know what you expect it to do or why you want or need one.
There are a lot of junk toys out there that look like laptops, just like there are toy cell phones that ring and say "hello", maybe they sing alphabet songs or whatever.

Alphasmart started out as a word processor, although it might be more like a PDA (palm-pilot) now.

The one-laptop-per-child project seems not to be finished. Microsoft apparently offers exceptions to their discontinuation of Windows XP only for those, since their low cost goal would otherwise favor LINUX. I have never even seen one of these 1LPC's:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EEEPC


You may have been misled by looking for "1LPC" rather than "OLPC". The EEEPC is not the same thing.

For OLPC, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olpc

There are a couple of other project on the go... in part due to the defection of some from the OLPC project, when that got subverted by Microsoft.

(Well... maybe I exaggerate - but M$ offering to supply "an extra cost, special version of the proprietary Windows XP OS" on the OLPC - just sounds like a desperate attempt to continue their monopoly.)


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Smelena
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14 Oct 2008, 4:09 pm

ValMikeSmith wrote:
I don't know what you expect it to do or why you want or need one.
There are a lot of junk toys out there that look like laptops, just like there are toy cell phones that ring and say "


Just for word processing - his handwriting is awful!

Quote:
You may have been misled by looking for "1LPC" rather than "OLPC". The EEEPC is not the same thing.

For OLPC, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olpc

There are a couple of other project on the go... in part due to the defection of some from the OLPC project, when that got subverted by Microsoft.

(Well... maybe I exaggerate - but M$ offering to supply "an extra cost, special version of the proprietary Windows XP OS" on the OLPC - just sounds like a desperate attempt to continue their monopoly.)


My brain hurts! :lol:

Helen



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14 Oct 2008, 5:10 pm

Ow. Sorry Helen. I got a bit distracted there.

Unfortunately, I don't know all that much about the sort of "ruggedized" PC you are after.

However, the EEEPC is certainly getting some pretty good press (both here, on WP, and elsewhere). Bear in mind that it has "no moving parts", so it starts off pretty rugged, versus a laptop with a spinning hard drive (which will never like physical shocks).


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shugo974
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14 Oct 2008, 6:27 pm

Well if his hand writting is that bad then use an alphasmart. I have one on my IEP report that school gave me. Yea it won't be able to get on tthe net (unless he gets a dana wireless) but an aplhasmart 3000 would be the great choice to go it is small,
light weight and comes with the wires to transfer the document to a computer so he can print from it. There is another wire for the printer but it is sperate. It has no hard drive so everything he types will be save with out him typing any keys, and will be stored in the alphasmart's RAM area. Or you can get him a Dana (yes there are 2 diffrent Danas) it has a big touch screen and will come with a SD card for free. But he has to touch the sreen to save. and there are way more applets the Danas have then the Alphasmart 3000. Here is what they can both do. Alphaword so he can type, Cal for math, printer settings and a print programe, can read e-books, has a blacklight, rechargable battery. The dana wireless can go on the net, send and writes e-mails, can Instent Message. But there is a software for te teachers to block and allow programes, oh and if he dropes it will still runs. the Alphasmart3000 can only use alphaword and a cal.


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Smelena
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14 Oct 2008, 9:10 pm

Thanks everyone!

I feel confident to go shopping now.

Helen



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14 Oct 2008, 11:22 pm

This is on sale right now, and looks pretty good:
http://www.anandtech.com/showdoc.aspx?i=3399&p=1
I have a Dell laptop and a tower, and both have been excellent. When a power plug became loose in my desktop monitor, they had a replacement monitor sent to me in less than 24 hours, no cost.



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15 Oct 2008, 7:22 am

Hi Helen, this is my first post on these forums but your thread caught my attention... hope this is appropriate! I'm using an Eeepc 701 at the moment and can't but vouch for its awesomeness - great for me and great for kids. As lau mentioned it doesn't have moving parts, which makes it quite a bit safer in active hands! It's also less than 1kg if your 8-year-old likes to be mobile (although it does mean the keyboard is smaller than normal).

I use mine for everything from lectures to games, surfing the internet and doing homework/assignments - not "just" a kid's laptop, but certainly fits the criteria you need! Of course he'll be the judge of whether he likes it or not, but - just thought I'd contribute as a happy user.

Hope the shopping goes well.



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