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1. Introduction

1. Introduction

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Published by khannaparle
Seminar Report
Seminar Report

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Published by: khannaparle on Feb 07, 2010
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07/12/2013

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1. INTRODUCTION
The
Simputer
is a self-contained, open hardware handheld computer, designed for use inenvironments where computing devices such as personal computers are deemed inappropriate.PicoPeta Simputers Pvt Ltd unveils
Amida Simputer
for the retail market
Fig. 1 Simputers
It's simple, it's portable. At about Rs 9,000 per piece, it's highly affordable. It is compatible withyour everyday PC, helps you check e-mail, browse the Net, keep accounts, and get information.When the invention of the Simputer (Simple Computer) was announced in 2001, it instantlycaptured the imagination of the world. The venerable New York Times called it the mostimportant invention of 2001 ahead of Apples G4 and Microsofts Windows XP operating system.Here was a computer that was rewriting every rule associated with computers. The goal of theSimputer project is to harness the potential of Information and Communication Technology(ICT) for the benefit of the weakest sections of society. The
software
developed by the Simputer Trust will be under GNU GPL and the
hardware
developed will be under Simputer GeneralPublic License (SGPL). The Simputer is a low cost portable alternative to PCs, by which the benefits of IT can reach the common man. It has a special role in the third world because itensures that illiteracy is no longer a barrier to handling a computer. The key to bridging thedigital divide is to have shared devices that permit truly simple and natural user interfaces basedon sight, touch and audio. The Simputer meets these demands through a browser for theInformation Markup Language (IML). IML has been created to provide a uniform experience tousers and to allow rapid development of solutions on any platform.
“The Simputer a cheap, pocket-sized computing device designed for use by ruralpopulations in India has been hailed as a breakthrough in bringing the world of computingto the poor”
 
2. JUST WHAT IS A SIMPUTER?
 
What exactly is the Simputer? Put quite simply, it is more complex and powerful than apalm top.
For example, in terms of screen size (320x240), memory capabilities (32MB RAM) and the OS(GNU/Linux). It runs on an Intel strong-arm chip. The chip is known for its low power consumption. The Simputer runs on three AAA batteries or off the mains. It can also userechargeable batteries, but the charger is not built in. Thus, the Simputer is basically a low-costcomputer with multiple connectivity options. It will be modular and based entirely on freesoftware from the Open Source Initiative. Its primary input will be a touch-sensitive overlay onthe LCD display panel. The primary application interface would be a browser that can render theInformation Markup Language. IML is a new XML application being designed specifically for handheld devices like the Simputer. The use of XML-based language is in line with the philosophy of utilizing global Internet standards. To the rural Indian poor, and even to most citydwellers, a computer is probably as remote an option as a trip to the moon. But things are aboutto change.
2.1 The Brains Behind The Concept
 
A small group of scientists of the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore and some engineering professionals from the firm Encore Software have designed this simple device, and set up a trustto take it to the world.This device, called a Simputer, will be launched formally on April 25 in Bangalore.This gadget is not a PC. It is a simplified device more like a pocket computer. Whatdistinguishes it from other hand-held devices is its smart card reader. Besides, it also has anInformation Markup Language that is, amongst other thing, smart card aware. It will also havethe use of extensive audio in the form of text-to-speech and audio snippets.An important feature of the Simputer is the SmartCard Reader/Writer. The smart card isemerging as a credible delivery vehicle for financial transactions on the Internet and has becomean important tool for electronic commerce. The incorporation of a smart card reader/writer in theSimputer will, therefore, increase the functionality of the mobile device for deployment of aricher set of value-added services, including services such as home banking through personalATMs and home shopping.
 
A user's individual profile can be stored on a smart card, which he can carry around with him.Once inserted into the smart card interface, the Simputer will read the profile from the smart cardand also update changes if any, during the current transaction cycle.
2.2 Affordable Computing
 
The projected cost of the Simputer is about Rs 9000 at large volumes. But even this is beyondthe means of most citizens. The Smart Card feature that the Simputer provides enables theSimputer to be shared by a community.A local community such as the village panchayat, the village school, a kiosk, a village postman,or even a shopkeeper should be able to loan the device to individuals for some length of time andthen pass it on to others in the community. The Simputer, through its Smart Card feature allowsfor personal information management at the individual level for an unlimited number of users.The impact of this feature coupled with the rich connectivity of the Simputer can be dramatic.Applications in diverse sectors such as micro banking, large data collection, agriculturalinformation and as a school laboratory is now made possible at an affordable price

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