Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Points of views and questions about the OLPC project. What should it be? How could it be better? Where is it needed most? Ask your questions here and let your opinion be known.

Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby TJ » Mon Apr 21, 2008 4:06 pm

Anyone associated with OLPC here care to comment about a post over at OLPCnews stating:

http://www.olpcnews.com/people/leadersh ... _olpc.html

Walter Bender resigned from OLPC!

"Apparently, rumor has it that Nicholas Negroponte is close to abandoning Sugar and Linux in favor of Microsoft XP, to spur sales of the XO laptop. Negroponte thinks that many more laptops need to be sold and a partnership with Microsoft is the way to achieve that goal.

Walter Bender disagreed with this near-total abandonment of the original mission - constructionism as children learning learning to create life-long exploration and collaboration through open information and communication technologies. And so he walked away from OLPC the organization for one laptop per child, the global movement."
TJ
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:06 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby TJ » Mon Apr 21, 2008 7:15 pm

TJ
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:06 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby brisalta » Mon Apr 21, 2008 10:39 pm

I hope you all realize Walter Bender took a leave of absence from MIT to work with OLPC. That in it self was a good indication that he was going to leave once OLPC got to a certain phase.
brisalta
 
Posts: 86
Joined: Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:30 am

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby TJ » Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:43 am

Just because Bender is reported to be on a leave of absence from MIT, that does not mean that he intended to return to MIT. In fact Walter's position at MIT was filled on February 1 of his leave by Moss according to MIT President Susan Hockfield.

Also, Negroponte is also shown as on leave from MIT, where he was co-founder and director of the Media Laboratory.
TJ
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:06 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby Ben » Tue Apr 22, 2008 1:36 am

I was worried that something might be going on. I've been a regular reader of the weekly news summary that Walter puts out every Saturday. By Saturday evening, I just assumed he was busy and hadn't released it yet. By Sunday evening I was beginning to wonder if the delay meant that something happened to him.

I hope he doesn't go far from the OLPC project.

Even though he has a busy schedule, I was delighted that he took the time to come to our first XO meeting in February at a Starbucks in Cambridge. While he was there he chatted with us and he candidly answered questions about the OLPC project. Just before he left, he invited us to hold our next user group meeting at the laptop.org headquarters.

At the next meeting, he welcomed us to their headquarters and gave us a tour of their space showing. During the meeting he stopped by for a few minutes to talk with us, and then he offered us an XO to take apart and explore.

He didn't come across as an aloof bigwig, but rather someone who was enthusiastic about the project and cared about us as fellow enthusiasts.
Ben
 
Posts: 16
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2007 11:52 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby Peter1a » Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:15 am

Two little bits here:

http://tinyurl.com/4ebzrm

OLPC head of software and content resigns, possibly over transition to XP

by Nilay Patel, posted Apr 21st 2008 at 3:28PM
The recent shakeups at the top of the OLPC hierarchy have apparently claimed another victim, as OLPC News is reporting that Software and Content chief Walter Bender has just left the project. Rumor is that Nicholas Negroponte is going to transition the OLPC XO entirely to Windows XP to spur sales soon, and Bender is reportedly unhappy about that. What makes this all the more interesting is that when security director Ivan Krstić left the OLPC project last month, he specifically said he was unhappy that the restructuring no longer required him to work with Bender, and said that he could no longer "subscribe to the organization's new aims or structure in good faith." Looks like something's afoot at OLPC, and the old guard isn't happy about it.

And from an Email to me last night:

"I have no comment (and no knowledge or interest) regarding plans for XP.

-walter"

From which I can deduce he is going permanently and is against the Microsoft takeover.
Peter1a
 

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby Peter6218 » Tue Apr 22, 2008 12:43 pm

OLPC head of software and content resigns, possibly over transition to XP

The recent shakeups at the top of the OLPC hierarchy have apparently claimed another victim, as OLPC News is reporting that Software and Content chief Walter Bender has just left the project. Rumor is that Nicholas Negroponte is going to transition the OLPC XO entirely to Windows XP to spur sales soon, and Bender is reportedly unhappy about that. What makes this all the more interesting is that when security director Ivan Krstić left the OLPC project last month, he specifically said he was unhappy that the restructuring no longer required him to work with Bender, and said that he could no longer "subscribe to the organization's new aims or structure in good faith." Looks like something's afoot at OLPC, and the old guard isn't happy about it.

http://tinyurl.com/4ebzrm
Peter6218
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 4:42 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby bleatingedge » Tue Apr 22, 2008 3:47 pm

Why repeat rumors here? You can get your fill of that and a stream of vicious editorial slant at olpcnews.com.

Changes are happening in the management and focus of OLPC. Time will tell how it shakes out. Let's hope for the best and ignore the useless speculation.
bleatingedge
 

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby TJ » Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:51 pm

Appear that Walter is starting a new project and that Negroponte is going with Microsoft first and perhaps Sugar as a backup educational afterthought.

The article states that Negroponte's comments and new direction "might disappoint advocates of open-source software who helped bankroll OLPC and cheered the challenge it represented to Microsoft's dominance. Unlike proprietary software like Windows, open-source applications are developed by a community of programmers and the underlying code is freely shared."

I'd have to say that the article has understated this fact, as far as I am concerned.

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5hXa0 ... gD9074MH82

Negropnte lamented that an overriding insistence on open-source had hampered the XOs, saying Sugar "grew amorphously" and "didn't have a software architect who did it in a crisp way." That he expects XOs to soon have a "dual-boot" option, where Windows would be the sole operating system, with sugar relegated to a backup/educational role.
TJ
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:06 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby owlgarden » Wed Apr 23, 2008 2:58 pm

In my experience, leadership changes always bring a certain level of F.U.D. to
any organization. Some organizations -especially ones that address a wide breadth of
collaborating communities as a necessary component- need to have a foundation of
interaction as their leadership guide and not necessarily a leader. I say this not to
negate the amazing vision and leadership qualities of NN or Walter, but to distract the
detractors who would say that OLPC is disintegrating. I've read a couple things around
the internet that are quite off base about OLPC.

In talking about the XO to new people- I have to stress that it's an education and learning project
and the Laptop is simply a device to encourage the elements of learning and collaborating.
The operating system is not the point (though, from my technical standpoint- it is very cool).
I often end up saying it's not about bringing Youtube and Facebook to third world countries.

OLPC is in an early stage. I think that the "motives" of the leading "personalities" who led to the creation of this device will remain despite personnel changes, software changes, and hardware decisions.
Clearly, anything could happen to the OLPC as long as its guide is toward helping children gain access to educational tools. This ultimate goal supersedes any individual endeavor, and it should remain an intrinsic part of this community.

In light of MS or any other large Corp wanting to contribute to this project, I would hope they embrace the ideas behind OLPC, rather than look to achieve some sort of Branding stature embedded with a learning tool. My experience with my own XO and the (american) kids I let play with it- is that they don't care what operating system is on it-they just want to play with TamTam- and that's how it should be - transparent.
owlgarden
 
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 8:29 am

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby TJ » Wed Apr 23, 2008 5:35 pm

owlgarden:
In my experience, leadership changes always bring a certain level of F.U.D. to
any organization.


In my experience also, with good reason(s).

I also believe that if M$ did not use the XO as a branding tool in this billion (+) laptop market, their shareholders would hold an inquisition.
TJ
 
Posts: 28
Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:06 pm

Re: Has Walter Bender Resigned from OLPC ?

Postby Peter6218 » Wed Apr 23, 2008 5:40 pm

I also believe that if M$ did not use the XO as a branding tool in this billion (+) laptop market, their shareholders would hold an inquisition.


And that is very true. MS has a responsibility to its shareholders to maximize results.
Peter6218
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 4:42 pm


Return to Open Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron