It could give the biggest boost yet to the K-12 dream of putting a full-powered computer in front of every student. It's the emergence of fully equipped personal computers selling at retail for under $1,000 — sometimes substantially so. And indications are that this breakthrough is just the beginning. Industry analysts predict the era of a PC selling near $500 is not far away.

Since early January, Compaq, Hewlett-Packard (HP), and Packard Bell have been offering full-powered


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