[clug] OLPC laptop giving, postmortem

David Tulloh david at tulloh.id.au
Fri Feb 29 12:36:50 GMT 2008

A few months ago I posted to the list my plans to get a few OLPC XO 
laptops through their give one get one program.  I promised a few people 
I'd do a recap when I got them, they arrived on Tuesday.

I got two laptops the total cost came to $528 each.  I estimated it at 
$529 so I'm pretty happy with that, the prices moved around a bit due to 
the shipping provider and exchange rates.

The call to OLPC was fairly easy, the guy answering the phone was an 
Indian chap they'd gotten off a cold calling group and he kept trying to 
sell me the laptops "Today we have a special offer for you...".  He 
managed to misspell my email address lopc-david rather than olpc-david 
which I thought was interesting.

The laptops took a while to ship but that's fairly well documented.  
They were kind enough to send me an email that told me that the laptop 
would ship soon and provided a link where I could enter my number for 
more details, the link told me the laptop would ship soon.  They later 
provided a fedex tracking number.

I used VPost to reship them for me.  I had a few issues with VPost, the 
laptops actually sat in their warehouse for two weeks before I decided 
to get more details
from the OLPC group and discovered that they had been shipped.  The 
issue came about because I hadn't lodged an invoice with VPost so they 
just ignored the boxes, they should have had my VPost ID in the address 
and I would have appreciated a notification.  When I contacted VPost 
their customer support was excellent, they found them and got me to fill 
in an invoice template (OLPC didn't supply one) and then it was shipped 
the next US day.  They even put the two OLPC boxes in one big box which 
made it cheaper for me.

One is for my housemate and is still in it's box as she's been away for 
the week.  I've been playing with mine for the last few days, the 
interface feels very rough, it's becoming very tempting to try and dive 
in and fix it all.  I'm also looking forward to playing with the network 
features once the other one is up and running.


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