7″? Will that satisfy anyone? With a screen that tiny how much you want to bet by the time these kids graduate high school they’re all wearing glasses.

Kid-size computers

For nearly a year, Fresno Unified school officials searched for a laptop that wouldn’t clutter a student’s desk.

Thursday, school officials said they purchased 1,000 wireless laptops that fit on a desk alongside textbooks and notebooks, as well as give students the opportunity to build a digital portfolio of essays, drawings and other creations.

“This is cool,” said Chris Mitchell, a student at Bullard High School, where school officials unveiled the 7-inch wireless laptops.

Fresno Unified hopes the laptops will help students increase test scores through the ability to research information on the Internet, as well as halt five years of declining enrollment by enticing parents to send their children to the district’s schools.
With this technology, Madden said, a student’s portfolio will include everything a student writes and saves in the district’s computer network from kindergarten to 12th grade. Because the laptop has a camera, students can take a photograph of their artwork or make a video of their school project.

So, with a built-in camera, how quickly will the first porn be made on one?

Click the pic below for information on this pint-sized PC. Interesting tech is no hard disk: up to an 8 gig SSD.

  1. morram says:

    Seems to me most books are smaller, at least their actual content. I would have enjoyed this type of technology in school and think of the abilities we’d have to make changes and updates even during a classes year without getting new books. I’m surprised our schools have taken so long to change when it seems every business and government is submerged in computer usage.

  2. GetSmart says:

    I want one. E-book, mp3, email, e-porn. What’s not to like?

  3. B. Dog says:

    It ain’t the meat, it’s the motion. These things are portable. Anyway, we’re competing with the Chinese now, so the old rules of thumb don’t apply.

    What’s wrong with wearing glasses? Smart people do it all the time.

  4. tallwookie says:

    i guess bigger desks just wasnt an option

  5. Curmudgen says:

    Iphone users, get thee to an Optometrist like right now!!

  6. Improbus says:

    How can one touch type on a keyboard that small? I am so glad the I have a 17 inch laptop with a full keyboard … including a number pad.

  7. Awake says:

    It is great that they are making these things available, specially if the kids are from ‘true’ working class families where $1000 is a lot of money.

    As far as screen size, these are for in-class use, utterly portable. They are not meant for replacing a more mainstream computer that they might use in their library or computer center.

    For the dummies that are criticizing screen size… the text on those screens is probably larger than the text on a 20 inch monitor set to 1680. Screen size and text size have nothing to do with each other.

    One interesting thing in the article… the teacher that complains that the students may not pay attention during the lecture segment of the class. Hey teacher… get another job. Part of your job is maintaining discipline in the classroom. Just tell the students to put the darn thing away during your lectures! Or are you boring your students and you have no power over the kids?

  8. Awake says:

    >> How can one touch type on a keyboard that small? I am so glad the I have a 17 inch laptop with a full keyboard …

    And you still can’t type!

  9. Bryan Carney says:

    #6 As a keyboardist in the musical sense, I can say that the mind is very adaptable. It’s only a matter of one de facto adjustment, not 88 or 102, to switch key sizes.

    I have had the opportunity to play on older forte-pianos, harpsichords, and clavichords, which have smaller key-widths than modern day equivalents. It only takes a matter of hours for the mind to plot spacial relationships to a high degree of accuracy.

  10. jim h says:

    The size of the screen isn’t the problem, it’s the limited resolution (I think it’s 800 x 480) which ASUS is not exactly featuring in their ads. I like the small size, light weight, battery life, but the screen is a non-starter and the price is still too high. ASUS is on the right path but not ‘there’ yet.

  11. Simon says:

    I still find the eee extremely stupid, is way to expensive. You still can’t get the eee here in Denmark, so I don’t know what it would cost in Danish kroner, but $400 is 2000kr, add the sales tax,making it 2500kr, throw in an additional 500kr and you get a real laptop.

    The eee should should cost more than $250 if it’s to be interresting.

  12. chuck says:

    The Asus Eee PC is a good “single-function” computer. If you can call the Internet a single function. E-mail, browser, etc. The word processor is adequate – that’s where you really notice the keyboard size.

    I’ve tried it – the low resolution doesn’t really matter too much — all the apps run full-screen (and you TAB between them). The tiny mouse touch-pad is useless (to me), so I’d suggest getting a small external mouse. 16GB would be nice.

    It makes OLPC look like crap.

  13. MikeN says:

    Why are they giving kids computers to begin with? A waste of money.

  14. Greg Allen says:

    With schools brimming with WiFi, how much do you want to bet that some parent is going to sue Fresno Unified School District for causing their kid’s leukemia due to exposure to so much RF?

  15. Greg Allen says:

    As for the Eee! Pee! C computer… I think it looks fantastic.

    I’d love to get my hands on one… it might be the computer I’ve been demanding ever since I retired my Tandy 102.

  16. the Three-Headed Cat says:

    Unca Dave?

    “With a screen that tiny how much you want to bet by the time these kids graduate high school they’re all wearing glasses.”

    Old wives’ tale.

    A too-small or too-dim screen cannot itself cause damage or diminish one’s visual acuity; the worst it can do is tired eyes, eventually a headache – and over a long enough time, wrinkles from squinting…

    Not everything Mom taught us is true, heartbreaking as that may be… 😉

  17. jim h says:

    Any school districts that buy hundreds of these this year (or force parents to) are going to feel dumb in a year when new models have full-size screens.

    Would people buy half-size textbooks? Then why buy chopped half-size screens? This is obviously just a stopgap model intended to grab market share.

  18. Uncle Dave says:

    #17: “Not everything Mom taught us is true”

    Given some of the things mine tried to teach me (racism, homophobia, religion, etc), I’m thankful for that!

  19. MikeN says:

    Half size textbooks are an infinitely better use of resources than these laptops.

    You have less weight to be carried home by kids, on the margin meaning more books carried home and more homework done.

    Meanwhile the laptops are a net negative for education.

  20. ECA says:

    “I”, would like to see SCHOOL systems publishing THEIR OWN BOOKS… FORGET buying this carp at OUT RAGIOUS prices…

  21. Angel H. Wong says:

    it’s small enough to place on the bathroom and watch porn.

  22. KevinL says:

    When did pencils and paper stop working? One more reason to hate the corrupt public school system in this country.

  23. jbellies says:

    If the screen is small, just adjust the number of characters per line. 40 sounds about right. HTML was designed with that in mind.

    I’d like to get my hands on an 8 GB SSD, in 2.5″ laptop HD format, put it in an old Thinkpad 701C, and have true tiny and silent old-fashioned computing (with a butterfly keyboard). I’d like to pay $100 for the SSD-HD, and, no, I don’t want to have to use an adapter. AFAIK, what you can get now is something 4x as large for 4x as much.

  24. ohwenzelph says:

    they got 1000 computers
    “But not every educator is thrilled with the $650,000 investment.”
    so… ~$650 per computer in units of 1000.
    currently $410.83 shipped from newegg for 1.
    I don’t know what kind of educational discount they negotiated or markdown for getting 1000 all at once, but an average of $240+ dollars overhead for EACH $400 pc purchased seems a little high, but typical of bureaucratic bloat where a big chunk of the donor/taxpayer’s money gets lost in the “process”

    easiest money to spend? somebody elses

  25. badcam says:

    My wife keeps telling me me that “7 inches would satisfy her…if only!”.

  26. Nice home says:

    I would like i had it at the Univercity, for lectures, but not at school or college.


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