miércoles, 2 de septiembre de 2009

Una Laptop por cada Niño.OLPC



En el 2005, Nicolas Negroponte, profesor del Instituto de Tecnología de Massachusetts (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MIT ), lanza en el Foro Económico Mundial de Davos su proyecto OLPC (One Laptop per Child) a un costo de $100, revolucionando así el concepto de la educación infantil. Lo hace pensando en la necesidad de disminuir la brecha digital en los países menos desarrollados, y pretende desarrollar el uso de la informática y de Internet. Las computadoras que pretende crear son básicas en sus componentes, pero nuevamente los desarrollos tecnológicos y las nuevas técnicas de educación han obligado al proyecto a modificar sus características y a separarse del costo inicial


Una laptop por niño es mucho más que una fundación que pretende repartir computadores portátiles a los niños marginados; es un sistema de acceso a información determinada y que a su vez, deberá ser amoldado a cada lugar geográfico y cultural.


Es importante saber que estas unidades no precisan de programas educativos que deban instalarse sino que se trabajara directamente en Internet con Open Sources como ABCPEDIA o Wikipedia. Una laptop por niño apunta a los más de mil millones de niños en etapa escolar en todo el mundo sub-desarrollado y pretende cubrir la entrega de cien millones de ellas por año y un cambio en la estructura escolar. El sistema operativo, una variante de Linux, fue creada exprofeso por Red Hat, y el proyecto fue promovido e iniciado por Nicholas Negroponte.


Lo mas interesante es que cualquier persona podrá comprar una de estas máquinas, por un precio de 399 dólares que es el doble del precio que tendrá en países subdesarrollados pero que lleva la modalidad de que al comprar una se está regalando otra para algún niño que no pueda pagar el precio mínimo del equipo. Esta especie de “mecenazgo” hará posible que pronto, las computadoras estén disponibles en cualquier lugar del mundo, incluso en lugares donde no hay electricidad, pues la laptop puede recargarse vía una especie de manivela. Un proyecto realmente maravilloso, desde mi punto de vista.

Los latinoamericanos están mirando hacia la modernidad y para mejorarse tecnológicamente, cada nación está desarrollando iniciativas que fomenten su crecimiento. Incentivados en el proyecto OLPC. En Venezuela se desarrolla actualmente el Proyecto Canaima, con portátiles elaborados en Portugal bajo las mismas condiciones que los verdes laptops de la OLPC y en Uruguay, el país piloto en América lleva mas de un año bajo el Proyecto Ceibal, por parte de la OLPC.

Ambos proyectos son desde todo punto de vista una ventaja, ya que los aparatos no usan energía eléctrica y así se incrementa su utilidad real, pensando en los pueblos del interior, más aislados de las redes tecnológicas más sofisticadas.

Según el plan establecido, se entregará una computadora por cada niño de escuela pública en los próximos años. Uruguay empezó en marzo de 2007 y Venezuela entra al sistema de un computador por niño este mes de septiembre del año en curso. México y Perú ya hicieron su solicitud a la OLPC de 50.000 y 260.000 unidades respectivamente. Con esto se pretende dejar en igualdad de condiciones las escuelas públicas y privadas de cada país en cuanto al acceso a tecnología.

Que es la X0?


El ordenador que se utiliza en el programa OLPC tiene un costo que no supera los cien dólares. Esta basado en el sistema operativo LINUX que es gratuito; un procesador de 500 MB de memoria flash, 128 de memoria DRAM; sin disco duro, con puertos USB y conexión de red inalámbrica WI FI, incluso para mesh network (comunicación entre ordenadores vecinos). Los detalles más importantes del aparato destinado a hacer realidad una laptop por niño son el uso de fuentes de energía atípicas (que incluye baterías de carga manual para zonas donde no se dispone de electricidad) y la generación de pantallas de bajo costo.

El único inconveniente de estas unidades son el no poder guardar grandes cantidades de información, aunque se están estudiando soluciones al respecto, como por ejemplo la poder crear un disco duro virtual, como si fuese una cuenta de correo electrónico, de acceso personal.

PROYECTO CANAIMA - VENEZUELA


Canaima es un proyecto socio-tecnológico abierto, construido de forma colaborativa, centrado en el desarrollo de herramientas y modelos productivos centrados en las Tecnologías de Información Libres (TIL) de software y sistemas operativos cuyo objetivo es generar capacidades nacionales, desarrollo endógeno, apropiación y promoción del libre conocimiento, sin perder su motivo original: la construcción de una Nación venezolana tecnológicamente preparada

CARACTERÍSTICAS PRINCIPALES

• Totalmente desarrollada en Software Libre.
• No está limitada al uso en la administración pública APN, sino que puede ser usado por cualquier persona.
• Se encuentra equipado con herramientas ofimáticas como OpenOffice.org, (procesador de palabras, hojas de cálculo, presentaciones), diseño gráfico, planificación de proyectos y bases de datos.
• Permite la interacción con Internet, a través de su navegador web, gestor de correo electrónico y aplicaciones para realizar llamadas telefónicas por la red.
• Es estable y segura, basada en la versión de GNU/Linux Debian, la cual pasa por una serie de procesos y pruebas rigurosas de calidad.
• Actualmente son traídas de Portugal, pero las siguientes serán realizada en Venezuela por talento nacional con la creación de una fábrica para elaborarlas

QUIENES PARTICIPAN EN ESTE PROYECTO

Las formas de participación en el proyecto Canaima son diversas, tanto para desarrolladores de GNU/Linux con experiencia como para recién llegados al mundo del Software Libre. Por ejemplo, puedes unirte a una de nuestras listas de correos para obtener o prestar ayuda a otros usuarios, puedes probar la distribución e informar y/o documentar los errores que encuentres, puede revisar la documentación de usuario, crear y enviar parches, sugerir nuevos paquetes y prestaciones o cualquier otra formas de colaboración.

Si no eres un programador no hay problema. Puedes visitar la wiki donde podrás contribuir con la corrección de artículos y manuales y si conoces de instrucciones, soluciones a problemas comunes, trucos y consejos puedes documentarlas también.

Proyecto Canaima permitirá que miles de niños de primer grado se familiaricen con las computadoras Canaima.

Unas 1.150 instituciones educativas a nivel nacional serán incorporadas al proyecto en septiembre: serán dotadas de 50 mil computadoras portátiles "Canaima" (también conocidas como Magallanes y traídas de Portugal) para niños y docentes. Vendrán con el sistema operativo Canaima GNU/Linux especialmente adaptado para estos computadores, y con contenido educativo elaborado por el Ministerio de Educación y el CNTI.

Con este proyecto se incorporarán, en el mes de septiembre del 2009, más de 1.150 instituciones educativas a nivel nacional, las cuales serán dotadas de 50 mil computadoras portátiles (Canaimas) para niños y docentes. Para los próximos años escolares se incorporarán el resto de los grados de Educación Primaria, hasta dotar todas las escuelas del territorio venezolano, contando con el apoyo del Ministerio del Poder Popular para la Ciencia y la Tecnología, al igual que de las direcciones de Tecnología de la Información y Comunicación, Recursos para el Aprendizaje y la Fundación Bolivariana de Informática y Telemática del MPPE.

PROYECTO CEIBAL- URUGUAY


El Proyecto Ceibal (a veces nombrado Plan Ceibal) es una iniciativa de la Presidencia de la República Oriental del Uruguay, por el que se pretende que en 2009 cada maestro y cada alumno de las escuelas públicas disponga de una computadora portátil de 100 dólares. El nombre «Ceibal» fue elegido por el sentido simbólico que tiene para los uruguayos el árbol del ceibo, su flor (Flor Nacional del Uruguay) y el conjunto de los ceibos a lo largo de los ríos interiores del país. Fue transformado en una sigla, "Conectividad Educativa de Informática Básica para el Aprendizaje en Línea". Esto quiere decir una computadora para cada niño y cada maestro

VÁZQUEZ LANZÓ PROYECTO PARA UNA COMPUTADORA POR NIÑO

“Nuestro objetivo estratégico es que todos los niños tengan acceso al conocimiento informático en un marco de equidad” dijo el Presidente de la República, Tabaré Vázquez, en el acto de lanzamiento del Programa de Equidad para el Acceso a la Información Digital.

A través de este proyecto, el Gobierno procura facilitar el acceso de todos los uruguayos, y en especial a los escolares, a la información computarizada y al trabajo en red entre domicilios, y entre los domicilios y las escuelas.

Sin duda alguna, la visión que ha tenido el creador de OLPC es algo muy loable pero mas allá de los intereses altruistas hay cosas que no podemos dejar escapar y solamente cerrar los ojos, Al poner en manos de estos pequeños estas portátiles, creo que estamos pasando por alto algunos aspectos como son:

 Seguridad

Uno de los principales problemas que veo en este proyecto es la seguridad de los niños. La intención es entregar estas laptops a los niños de los colegios del estado para que usen en la escuela, y se las lleven consigo a sus hogares para que continúen su aprendizaje mediante el juego. Si bien esto es muy loable en el papel y la intención, ¿cómo pretenden evitar que estos niños se conviertan en víctimas de robos? Inmediatamente los ladrones empezarían a mirar a los niños como buenos blancos para cometer asaltos ya que se convertirían en víctimas más rentables que un adulto, con una capacidad mucho menor de oponer resistencia. Y el problema se acentúa ya que TODOS los niños estarían en riesgo, no solo los que tienen laptops ya que un ladrón no tiene manera de saber si un niño lleva una escondida entre sus cosas o no.

 Reventa

Otro punto que al parecer ha sido obviado es la situación de pobreza en la que viven muchos de los niños que recibirán las laptops. Una familia pobre no va a dudar en vender una laptop para tener algo para comer, o en todo caso para mejorar en algo su situación. Si en una familia hay 4 o 5 niños en edad escolar hay entonces 4 o 5 aparatos para vender cuando la situación apremie (o cuando el familiar fumador/alcohólico/drogadicto necesite una fuente rápida de ingresos). Incluso los mismos alumnos podrían vender sus equipos para poder adquirir algo que realmente les interese.

 Uso de Recursos

Otro punto más que discutible es el del costo del equipo y el programa en general. Durante mucho tiempo se marketeó hábilmente a la OLPC como la "laptop de $100". Este precio subió a $150 y luego a $175. No me sorprendería que anuncien un nuevo aumento a $200. …No sería mejor invertir ese dinero en contratar profesores para cubrir el déficit o capacitar los que ya tenemos?

 Uso correcto de los equipos

Este punto también tiene 2 partes. Primero es el uso no educativo que se le de a la laptop, ya los niños lograrán salir a hi5 y MSN. Y lo harán, no tenga duda de esto. Este es un tema que puede ser hasta cierta medida controlable en el aula. Lo que me preocupa es el mal uso que le puedan dar a los aparatos: "las van a destrozar". Y es que han hecho las laptops a prueba de agua, a prueba de humedad, a prueba de polvo, pero no a prueba de sus dueños. Han subestimado totalmente la capacidad destructiva de los niños

 Demagogia

Me preocupa, al igual que a muchos, la manera como se está manejando este tema a nivel gobierno, así que no se sorprendan que quieran convertirse en el gobierno que "le dio computadoras a cada niño", que es mucho mas visible y marketeable en elecciones que ser el gobierno que "capacitó a los maestros". Además obviamente que se van a necesitar luego consultorías y contratos de soporte.

No quiero decir con esto que el proyecto que se está llevando a nivel mundial sea una farsa, pero no hay que olvidar que los que llevan adelante la implementación de este nuevo sistema de educación solo trata a nivel de gobiernos y solo recibe ordenes que superen los miles de ordenadores lo cual es un negocio muy rentable si nos fijamos en que las ordenes superan los 50 mil y 100 mil y mas. Creo que se debería mirar mas el fondo de todo este asunto. Yo pienso que tiene muchísimas ventajas, por lo pronto se estarán quedando obsoletas las antiguas prácticas de usar libros y cuadernos y con esto se elimina la contaminación, la basura. Al disminuir la producción de libros, la producción de papel disminuiría y los arboles no serían talados para ser usado de materia prima.

Por otro lado, sería inmensa la accesibilidad a una enorme fuente de investigación y la comunicación entre maestros y alumnos sería mas directa dejando por fuera la sospecha de algunas personas de que los niños podrían entrar en contacto con pornografía, pues el soporte inhibe la entrada a páginas de ese tipo.

Al empezar desde la primera etapa educativa, los alumnos irían creciendo y adquiriendo una gran capacidad para manejar todos estos sistemas operativos y cibernéticos creando una nueva nación equipada fuertemente en potencial tecnológico.

Por mi parte, solo quisiera esperar que este nuevo proyecto pueda ser preservado a través de los años por los gobernantes que vengan en los siguientes periodos, porque es una inversión enorme que hubiera podido ser aprovechada en preparar mejor a los maestros, para mejorar la calidad de vida de algunas familias o para muchas otras cosas que no sea en un futuro cementerio de portátiles en desuso.

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