Posted by Lori Ayre on February 20, 2008

The new Cloudbook is an ultralight PC (2 lbs) with all open source software installed including Open Office which provides a very nice substitute to the oh so pricey Microsoft Office suite.

At a cost of only $399, this might be a very nice option for libraries thinking about making laptops available to their users.

Not only is the OS (gOS Rocket) and the applications Open Source (Mozilla Firefox, gMail, Meebo, Skype, Wikipedia, GIMP, Blogger, YouTube, Xing Movie Player, RythemBox, Faqly, Facebook and 2.3 (includes WRITER, IMPRESS, DRAW, CALC, BASE)), but the units are also based on an "ultra-low power design" and are "whisper quiet."

I don't know about you but all that matters. In fact, the quiet part is one of the most important features in my selfish book because the buzz, hum and gurgle of most computers drives me mad!

Though the Cloudbook sounds interesting, you may want to sit tight while people like Meredith Farkas work out the kinks for you. It sounds like it isn't ready right out of the box for your library users but between the price, size, greenness and open just might be the right fit down the road.