That said, the post is (in my opinion) relevant as the REAL Centre is an exception to the rule. There are an awful lot of (ed) research projects out there – . iPads in [add remote, impoverished area where the buildings are not electrically grounded here], which almost religiously equate activity with impact, very much to the long term detriment of the wider communities of their research subjects. In the case of the project mentioned above – which has been touring the conference circuit for a straight year and a half to much applause – any attempts at politely suggesting that TCO be taken into account are generally sniffed at and accompanied by a generic remark along the lines of “iPads are a revolutionary technology and – according to our preliminary research – we have reason to believe that they are going to transform education in country X”. This is usually followed by some OLPC bashing which completely ignores the fact that, unlike the iPad, those devices were built for dust and durability. Similarly to the iPad, the cost was generally too high/ the financial model was not sustainable (I’ve never managed to get to that point before having the mic confiscated). It is entirely possible that someone will get another research grant out of it by demonstrating an increase in learning outcomes (since the students in the pilot study went from having no books to using interactive iOS apps daily I’d say this is a given…and coincidentally so do their preliminary research findings :-)).