OLPC project has a remote "kill switch" for resold laptops

Perhaps it says something about a project if there's a likelihood the handouts will be resold for something actually useful, like food or shelter, but have no fear: Nick Neg and his OLPC crew even have a solution to that potential "problem" facing future owners of the XO. According to the recent Reuters report on the project, the laptops can be remotely shut down to help prevent the selling the devices on the black market, though details of exactly how this works aren't forthcoming. We suppose there's always the danger the laptops could be stolen, and this could prove a bit of a deterrent to that, but there's always going to be some value to the actual components of the laptop even if the locking code proves impenetrable -- which seems unlikely. "For people earning one dollar a day the temptation to sell it for $300 will be very strong," says Wayan Vota of OLPC News. Heck, who couldn't use a quick $300?

[Via Techdirt]