We can't decide if this is a Smart idea or a Stupid idea in the grand scheme of things
, but we love it just the same. Humane PC and its Humane Reader child are open source hardware projects with some seriously low-cost internal components. At volume the PC could retail for as low as $20, and that's with 2GB of microSD storage, USB / PS/2 plugs, and video out. The PC is primarily designed to output low-res, black and white text to a TV, making it a low cost reader for developing countries, and the Humane Reader project pre-loads the device with thousands of Wikipedia articles (much in the vein of the OpenMoko WikiReader
). Of course, the Humane PC itself is imminently hackable, and we probably haven't seen the full extent of this sucker's functionality just yet. The project is currently seeking a partner to deploy some prototypes.