In September this year, the Macedonian government announced one of the most ambitious educational technology projects ever proposed: to provide 180,000 of its school-age children with computer access.
The former Yugoslav republic has latched onto the potential of IT to drag it ahead of its Balkan neighbours and committed to transforming a largely agricultural and industrial economy into a knowledge-based one.
According to Ivo Ivanovsky, Macedonia's minister for information society: "The Computer for Every Child initiative is the largest and most important education project undertaken in the 15-year history of the Republic of Macedonia... Our goal is to build a knowledge-based economy in which our entire workforce is educated using information and communication technology within the next five years."
Aside from the logistics of rolling out new infrastructure on this scale, the obvious question is, how can a country that hardly ranks as one of the world's financial powerhouses afford a project that would stretch the resources of the richest economy? Step forward thin-client specialist NComputing and its cut-down, bloat-free approach to personal computing. The company's X-300 solid state devices allow a standard PC to act as a mini server, powering up to seven thin-client terminals.