Erik Norgaard norgaard at
Thu Jan 20 03:53:31 PST 2005

Matthias Buelow wrote:
> Apart from the fact that a person who speaks Arabic or 
> Indonesian, or Pashtu probably has little use for a "kewl-themed" 
> blackbox desktop, or something like that.  That works for us 
> latin-script Unix geeks with a working knowledge of English but 
> certainly not for an average user in the 3rd World.

You seem to forget that in most african and central/south american 
countries the official languages are still English, French, Spanish, 
Portugese, or other European language, while local languages are only 
slowly getting recognized.

Further, the European languages are particularly strong in areas that 
actually have electricity to hook up a computer, not to mention internet 

Also, in many developing countries, people are much more aware of the 
need to learn in particular English than in many European countries.

So, shipping of used pc's to a second life may not be a bad idea. Also, 
these old machines are less sensible to fluctuations in electricity, and 
this may be important factor in parts of these countries.

That said, ofcourse, one should consider the cost against buying new 
computers, the risks that personal data is not properly deleted before 
shipping etc. (personally I believe that harddisks should always be 

Cheers, Erik
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