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Thursday, October 02, 2008

Community Computer K-Yan

Professor Kirti Trivedi at the Indian Institute of Technology, has built what he calls a "compact media center" for schools without enough computer equipment to go around. It puts a range of home entertainment systems and a PC in a single black box about 1 cubic foot in volume. It has a 120-GB hard disk, a Pentium 4 processor, a modem, a hard disk, a DVD drive, four USB ports to connect external devices and a television tuner. It is a television and a personal computer rolled into one, but it does not have a monitor. Instead, the black box contains a projector with SVGA resolution that can beam a 300-inch-high image sharply on a wall.

The device, which comes with a wireless keyboard and mouse, is being marketed as K-yan by Infrastructure Leasing & Financial Services, a group made up of several Indian banks. Priced at about $3,200, a single K-yan can tutor a large classroom of nearly 100 students in schools that cannot afford multiple personal computers.


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