LAHORE: This is with reference to Umar Saif’s article “My very first computer” (May 8). I recall reading about BitMate last year, when it received some attention outside Pakistan (and thus subsequently in Pakistan). Umar Saif was a source of pride for many Pakistanis at that time. However, to be honest, after reading his article, I may have to change my opinion. This is not because he appears to be a propaganda arm of the Punjab government (read: PML-N), but rather because of his ill-thought ideas despite appearing to be highly educated.
He says that MIT’s One Laptop per Child (OLPC) and Intel’s Classmate PC programmes were huge successes. How so? And what makes him believe that such programmes can be successful in Punjab too? We have already seen that in some cases laptops being handed out by the Punjab government were being sold in the secondary market, which proves that the programme was only successful in transferring taxpayers’ money into the pockets of certain entities and helped the PML-N garner some positive headlines.
It is sad to see such thinking and logic coming from people working at, arguably, the finest academic institution in Pakistan.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 11th, 2012.
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