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Giving technology away for free will make money

May 22, 2006

Giving technology away for free will make more money

The Computer Clubhouse a not for profit global network of community based computer centres has set up shop in New Zealand.

The network, one of the largest of its kind in the world is in partnership with the Museum of Science Boston, Intel Corporation and (MIT) Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Labs; an award-winning community-based education program where underserved youth have free access to high-tech equipment and mentors to build self-confidence and an enthusiasm for learning that will help them develop job and life skills.

The Computer Clubhouse in New Zealand has deployed the first Clubhouse in Otara in Manukau City. The project working in close partnership with leading New Zealand ICT providers and the community is providing a three pronged approach (1) Neighbourhood Computer Clubhouses (2) A wireless network reaching over a significant portion of Manukau City (3) End connectivity including working with MIT Boston's latest initiative OLCP which is aiming to distribute 10 million purpose designed USD $ 100 Laptops to under served and third world communities at the beginning of next year.

Mike Usmar project coordinator for the New Zealand deployment says "we aim to provide this innovative approach to underserved communities for free as it is clear that significant impact on economic development and increase of social capital occurs when communities have access to leading edge technology. We applaud the Governments initiative both in the recent announcement of local unbundling of the network and the investment they are making into the ICT industry and communities through the Digital Strategies programme. Providing access will see an underserved market engage and use the technology, becoming valuable consumers and contributors to the knowledge economy of New Zealand reports Usmar.

The first programme has partnered with Clover Park Middle School and Te Whanau o Tupuranga, and three of their students have been selected to travel to Boston in July as part of a world wide Computer Clubhouse Teen Summit sponsored by the Intel Computer Clubhouse Network.


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