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September 30, 1997updated 03 Sep 2016 6:48pm

UK EDUCATION SUPPLIERS “NOT WORRIED” BY GATES’ UK SUMMIT

By CBR Staff Writer

UK suppliers of software and hardware to schools and colleges have responded enthusiastically to the news that Microsoft Corp’s Bill Gates will meet UK Prime Minister Tony Blair next Tuesday at Number 10 Downing Street to discuss Mr Blair’s plans to put a computer in every classroom (CI No 3,258). RM Plc told Computergram it was delighted that Mr Blair had put technology for education so high on the agenda, and said Bill Gates would be just one of many people the government was choosing to consult. RM has also been consulted, it said. Xemplar Education Ltd , the Apple Computer Inc/Acorn Computer Group Plc joint venture, said it welcomes Bill Gates association with the government’s National Grid for Learning. Rather than worrying that his involvement might influence the direction the government initiative might take, Xemplar says it is confident the government’s drive to ensure that the basis of the National Grid will be a true open- standard technology will ensure that no single company will dictate the agenda in the years ahead. It adds pointedly that when low cost technologies such as Network Computers arrive, these will plug directly into the ‘open-standard’ National Grid, trusting no doubt that trade and industry secretary Margaret Beckett will stand by her promise made a couple of years ago in her capacity as shadow trade and industry secretary, that Labour would have a tough pro-competition policy when questioned about British Telecommunications Plc’s role in the superhighway link for schools (CI No 2,803). However, Network Computer proponent Larry Ellison, Oracle Corp’s colorful chief executive, has apparently not yet received an invitation to Downing Street. When Computergram asked Number 10 whether Larry Ellison had been invited, the press office replied Who’s she?

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