As I have written before, I cannot imagine why a man like Carlos Slim, the man who is sometimes the richest one in the world, the head of Mexico's telephone and DSL service cannot do more to insure that people outside the big cities of Mexico have access to the internet. Then I got an idea: I'll look into the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, headed, with his wife, by one of the rivals for richest man title. Here is what the Foundation says on its web site about the importance of access to the internet:
Access to the Internet can change people’s lives.
southern hemisphere, big city or distant village—the Internet provides
opportunities for people to improve their lives. When people go online,
they can get health facts, use government services, manage finances,
look for jobs, do research for school and work, and keep in touch. In
the United States, where Internet access has been more widely
available, going online also enables people to participate more fully
in the social and economic fabric of their communities and make
meaningful contributions to society.
I looked further on the web page and found, miracle of miracles, that there is in fact a program in my very own state of Veracruz of the Bill and Melinda Foundation which embeds computer learning and training in a school project. It is called the Vasconcelos program:
It is directed towards more rural areas than the one we live in. We live near towns that do have broadband. But colonias like ours are ripe for computer training and internet accessibility, too.
Today is Christmas. Discovering this Vasconcelos program is like a Christmas present because it gives me a concrete place to get started.
More, I HOPE, soon.
In the meantime, check out the sitefor the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. It is a paragon of clarity and accessibility. If only we could trust more very rich people to be as wise as the Gates are.
Here is an ad from Amazon.com.uk. It is for the program "One Laptop per Child." The laptops cost $199.00 and you get a second one free. As you know, in Mexico, internet access -- reasonable internet access -- is not only not cheap, but it is not available in many areas. How to paralyze your budding work force! Some people and some communities who don't have Telmex's DSL have satellite access. This is apparently in a grey area of legality. And it is also very expensive. The laptops are not, especially with donors providing them.
Here is a picture of the one laptop per child laptop from Amazon.com: