i lost faith in nicholas negroponte and MIT's media lab after their previous antics in india. they set up medialab asia in india at some huge cost to the indian government and then started acting like little imperialists. they didnt have that much to offer and they wanted to dictate terms.
i guess this is why india is not in the list of privileged nations which will get the new rubber laptop. also there is the small matter of $100 million that he wants up front.
negroponte, in my opinion, is a showman. i dont believe this initiative is really going anywhere, but gets lots of publicity.
the simputer is a lot better as an alternative. note that there is no talk of local languages in the negroponte blurb. but i do like the idea of the handcrank, although that is more of a gimmick than anything else. AA batteries are available all over the place. a low power consuming battery operated device would be just fine.