As I said on an earlier occasion, I intend to sellotape mine to a brick and use it as a door stop
I wonder if *that* would blend.
You see, some things deserve to be put through this ^^^. I think putting a RasPi through would be just wrong. I know it's an inanimate object, but I can't help but... you all know where I'm going.
I see the OP's point of view but I feel the pros and cons have not been weighed fairly. I'm from the H/W side of the industry BTW, so the following is from experience.
Alpha boards can be made to work, very easily (because an engineer is sitting there and forcing it with very nasty threats and language).
Beta boards can be outsourced and acquired in low volumes, and barring a small issue here and there, they work quite well.
The first run of production? In software this is normally called the pre-release stage, for a damned good reason.
I'm guessing the 10 Betas were manufactured over here. The next 10k will be printed in a new company, assembled in a new company (with a whole new pick'n'place setup), and then shipped out - sans-testing*.
Although the XBMCXYZ (I'm lousy with letters) is certainly not going to go a long way to helping the education sector it will give lots of people a chance to do some preliminary testing on what should be considered a whole new set of boards - the Betas count for squat; the Foundation may have it right, but who can speak for the manufacturers. So some basic testing is done.
Then, there's the old fogies** like me who intend to push it to the limits (okay, after I've turned it into a t'inter-web radio server so I can wake to Radio Caroline). We can feedback on the somewhat more hidden bugs and generate some nice packages - software and learning aids - for education purposes.
After this, well then it's safe to start selling to the schools.
There's no way of knowing who will do what with it so there is no way to discriminate (ask people and you'll only ever help the liars). By limiting to 1 per order the foundation has taken every means to make it more fair.
Now onto PR, and I'll try and keep this bit shorter...
Without PR the best of products won't sell (well they do, but the take up is slow, and many crash due to this). With PR the worst of products can sell like hotcakes - people genuinely believe the rubbish put on between and during shows, it's scary.
Also, there would be a lot of people saying "I'll wait until people can show me something working before I buy one", these people have now seen it; people=me BTW.
Buy one to play with, and if that doesn't work for you, you now have a super cheap 'home theater***' server.
* sans - Latin for without, I believe (it's those pesky fonts!). There will be some basic DC testing of the PCB, but they won't be testing each built unit. Not for <£25.
** I'm not old, and I'm too young to remember Radio Caroline. I was, however, brought up on tails of this fantastic ship! Always disappointed that I missed out.
*** I hope this has digital audio over the HDMI (not for my sake). Not the end of the world if it doesn't, but it would be a good to have.
If this were shorter people would read it; short and punchy=good PR. I love irony.
Answer to the maths question was incorrect? WHAT! 7 + 10 = 17, surely! I took too long to type didn't I.