On the XO Laptop

The Most Important Programmers in the World

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[First published as xo-laptop xo-python The Most Important Programmers in the World on December 3, 2007.]

I just sent the following to the New York Linux User Group. I copy it here as it is a matter of general interest:

Announcements from NYLUG To:
NYLUG-Announcements , nylug-announce-bounces+shieldsd=us.ibm.com@nylug.org cc:
Re: [nylug-announce] NYLUG Python Workshop (12/4) announcement Subject:


The key role of Python in the new XO laptop, the first hardware from the “One Laptop Per Child” project, means that

Python is now the most important programming language in the world

Python now offers the most potential to leverage all the free and open-source software that has been created over the last quarter-century to make the world a better place.

I expect this will be the case for some time to come.

I have been blogging extensively about the XO at my blog, http://daveshields.wordpress.com. I would welcome an invitation to discuss the XO and Python at the first meeting for which you need a speaker that occurs after the arrival of my XO.

Some posts are about Python. They have the phrase “xo-python” in their title. Though I have only written a few so far, I plan to write many more as soon as my XO arrives.

XO’s are currently available only to residents of the U.S. and Canada, in a limited-time offer than expires on December 31, 2007.


January 1, 2008, will thus be the birth date of what I call the “XO Generation,” the people who will first encounter a computer in the form of an XO. This generation will also include others, such as their parents, who have a demonstrated interest in using the XO and promoting its use.

The MOST IMPORTANT members of the XO Generation are going to be those programmers who are skilled in Python who not only apply their skills to make the XO better, but most especially those who use their skills to educate the next generation of programmers.

The most important programmers in the world within the next few years are going to those that have mastered Python, and are then in a position where they can use their knowledge of their culture and their country to make their culture and their countries better.

Only those within a culture or community can ultimately improve it. Those outside the culture and/or community can help, but they can’t direct how it be done, or do it themselves.

If you are a programmer who knows Python, or want to learn Python, or know someone who wants to learn Python, then

BUY AN XO! You will not regret that you did.

By the way, if you are a programmer then here is a tip:

While some think the Wii is the Hot Toy of this shopping season, the XO is going to be remembered in just a short time as the really Hot Toy. So buy one for your child, then use it to code at night when the kiddies are asleep. (If you don’t have a child then buy one for your dog or cat, or your front door.)

See, for example, my post Goodnight Windows, Goodnight Mush.


I sent my note above in response to the following letter from Ron Guerin of the NYLUG:

Ron Guerin
Sent by: nylug-announce 11/29/2007 05:34 AM

To: NYLUG-Announcements
Subject: [nylug-announce] NYLUG Python Workshop (12/4) announcement

From: Mark Halegua

Next Tuesday, Dec. 4th, is the bi-weekly meeting of the NYLUG Python Workgroup.

When: Dec 4, 2007, 6-8PM
Where: Hudson Park Library (basement), 66 Leroy Street, West Village,

Considering the past couple of meetings has been a little unstructured, and some seemed uncomfortable with that, I’ve come up with a couple of ideas for topics to discuss. I’m open to others. I want the meetings to have something for all, novice to advanced python users.

some time with IDLE and Eric, two python IDEs.

creating a python script both intereactively and with a bang!

Some discussion of the built in data structures

Slicing (and dicing?)

And, for those more advanced — ???

Hire expert Linux talent by posting jobs here :: http://jobs.nylug.org
nylug-announce mailing list nylug-announce@nylug.org


Written by daveshields

December 12, 2007 at 4:03 pm

Posted in xo-laptop

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