it's not really like google maps -- at least, not the data in question. in israel, at least, the maps were 100% generated by Freemap, based on data contributed by the users as they drove the roads. (israel is a small enough country that you can pull that off.) the location and path data was uploaded from the client phone apps (which ran GPL'ed code, based on RoadMap) to a central server (which was always private code). so what's interesting is what the initial terms of service for the user-contributed map data was. i'd bet that this is like the CDDB case, where they were free to take the user-contributed CD database private at some point. as for RoadMap -- i'm a principal author of RoadMap, and am still the underworked maintainer of the mostly inactive sourceforge project. i looked into the GPL issue when the waze complaints started, and convinced myself at the time that certainly none of my code was in the current client. and frankly, i'd be shocked if any of the original code was left at all.
consumer cellular. it works, they're really helpful on the phone, and it's cheap.
sigh. there was never an OLPC decision to "switch to windows". there are about 2 million XO laptops deployed to children, and they all run fedora-based linux.
you should install one of the latest 10.1.2 or 10.1.3 releases on your XO-1, if only to see how far the project has come. no, it won't be the snappiest system you've used, but it will run gnome, and firefox, and generally be quite useful.
do these exist in a form suitable for whole-house use?
xo-3 will be a one of a family of tablets developed in partnership with marvell, all based more or less on the moby, as a references. the xo-3 will certainly be designed to meet the needs of developing-world children -- there would be no point, otherwise.
mlj developed the tech while at OLPC. the current laptops use (the direct predecessor of what would become) pixel qi screens.
there are 1.5 million kids out there using OLPC laptops. for example, every elementary school kid in uruguay has an XO. i'm having trouble seeing the failure in this.
the XO laptops are made in the same factory(ies) that all other major laptops are made in. the low price is the result of low-cost design, and selling for cost.
and it was true then, too. i've heard of one very small trial in which windows was used on the XO. the other 1.5 million XO laptops all run fedora.
no, definitely not with windows, or windows ce. not a chance.
while there have been trials of Windows-based XO laptops, there are zero major deployments using windows. there are 1.5 miliion laptops being used, today, somewhere in the world. and they all run linux.
where do you get "costs $99 each"? the cost is $200 each.