Intel extends Challenge to UK

Paul Otellini has included the UK in Intel's $150,000 business plan competition, and announced the company needs 1.3 billion computers to get one in the hands of all students and teachers.

Paul Otellini

Intel chief executive Paul Otellini used the World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT) in Amsterdam to announce an extension of the Intel Challenge to aspiring entrepreneurs in the UK, France and Germany.

The 2010 version business plan competition, which provides prize money for university students to help turn their ideas into entrepreneurial ventures, will include new partner institutions and participants from France, Germany and the UK. Details on which institutions will be included were not immediately available.

Otellini stressed that participants will compete for $150,000 in prize money, and will be mentored throughout the competition. Intel hopes that the competition will receive more than 10,000 business plan entries over the next three years.

Global education

Otellini also announced an extension of Intel's "100x100" program which aims to bring affordable computing to the next billion users in emerging economies around the globe.

"We will expand program to 100 countries, and 100 million student and teacher computers by 2014," he said. "We will go to 100 per cent eventually. We need 1.3 billion PCs to cover the world."

Otellini also highlighted the latest addition of the Classmate tablet netbook, which is designed to be waterproof and to withstand classroom abuse. An Intel engineer demonstrated the notebook during Otellini's keynote address, drawing applause for its interactive physics simulator designed for use by primary and secondary school students.

Going green

Otellini, who followed European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes on the WCIT stage in Amsterdam, seconded Kroes in stressing the potential of ICT to create jobs and to find meaningful solutions to environmental problems.

"In the next decade, another half billion people will enter the workforce, and we will need to create the conditions to generate meaningful jobs for them and for the existing workforce," he said.

He also pointed to the role ICT plays in reducing emissions and conserving energy.

"ICT generates two per cent of global emissions right now. We need to get more efficient, but we also play a role in the other big question how do we make the other 98 per cent more efficient?"

Otellini announced that by 2016 Intel plans to roll out servers for data centres that will have nine times the computing power on the same electricity consumption. He also pledged to lower the power consumption of all products that Intel ships worldwide, and to support efforts to implement smart grid technologies, showcasing Intel's own Home Dashboard device to monitor and control domestic energy use.

"Returning to sustained economic growth means taking a long-term view with a mindset of investment," he said. "These are the guiding forces that lead to ideas which spawn new businesses that create new jobs, and ultimately lead to wealth creation and higher standards of living."

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