[Sugar-news] Sugar DIgest 2008-09-02

Walter Bender walter.bender at gmail.com
Tue Sep 2 09:56:04 EDT 2008

=== Sugar Digest ===

1. Election results: The Sugar community has cast their votes; the
newly elected Sugar Oversight Board members are Walter Bender, Marco
Pesenti Gritti, Tomeu Vizoso, Chris Ball, Greg Dekoenigsberg, David
Farning, and Bernie Innocenti. We'll be holding our first meeting on
the #sugar-meeting channel on irc.freenode.net on Friday, 5 September,
at 14:00 UTC.

I'd like to thank the acting board—including Hernán Pachas, Aaron
Kaplan, and Ben Schwartz—for all their help over the past three months
and also all the candidates who took the time to participate in the

2. Book sprint: Adam Hyde and Anne Gentle organized a Sugar booksprint
last week in Austin. We had a large number of participants both in
person and online; the results are impressive and hopefully of utility
to the Sugar community. Please see http://en.flossmanuals.net/Sugar
and please help us improve the manual. (We also created a manual for
the OLPC-XO laptop that is available at
http://en.flossmanuals.net/XO.) Many thanks to everyone who
contributed, including Adam, Anne, David Farning, Mikus Grinbergs,
Brian Jordan, Adam Holt, Janet Swisher, Morgan Collett, Yama
Ploskonka, David Cramer, Emily Kaplan, Faisal Anwar, Christoph
Derndorfer, Sandy Culver, Aaron Konstam, and the Sugar community.

3. LiveCD, LiveUSB: A LiveCd is important tool, as it makes it much
easier for teachers to try Sugar in their classrooms (where often the
school IT department prohibit teachers from install software on school
computers). As part of the book-sprint effort (there is a chapter on
Getting Sugar), David Farning led an effort to update the Sugar LiveCD
and LiveUSB support. With much help from the community, we now have a
script that builds LiveCDs and LiveUSBs. The script pulls from the
lastest Sugar packages (the previously available LiveCDs were based on
a very old version of Sugar). We will begin hosting the .iso images
for download on sugarlabs.org starting this week.

=== Community jams and meetups ===

4. OLPC Learning Club, DC: Kevin Cole reports from Washington DC that
their learning club has been quite busy over the summer:
* two video conferences with OLPC Ottawa, courtesy of Nortel Networks,
which included a demonstration by the DC XO Repair Shoppe folks, and
report by Mike Lee on his numerous activities;
* a demonstration of Joyride;
* a teleconference with Anna Schoolfield, who was "broadcasting live"
from the Birmingham, Alabama XO Expo;
Materials are available at http://olpclearningclub.org/.
The next meeting is scheduled for 15 November; Dr. Frank Linton, Sheng
Zhao, and Matt Gallagher will present a tool for the automated
periodic capture of audio data; with an example of its application to
monitor honey bee health, part of an  interdisciplinary effort by the
Arlington Public Schools STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and
Math) Program.
Also, on 20 September, the club host another presentation by the XO
Repair Shoppe guys: "Setting Up an XO Repair Center."
Finally, the club will join Ubuntu DC and HacDC as the upcoming the
Takoma Park Folk Festival (http://tpff.org/).

===Tech Talk===

5. Goals: Simon Schampijer reports good progress on the Sugar Roadmap
(Please see http://sugarlabs.org/go/ReleaseTeam/Roadmap/0.84#Goals).

6. Activity updates: There are new versions of several key activities available:
* Journal 98 (http://dev.laptop.org/pub/sugar/sources/journal-activity/Journal-98.tar.bz2)
Key features include a messages indicating when NAND is "getting full"
and "critically full" and better RTL support;
* Read 50 (http://dev.laptop.org/pub/sugar/sources/read-activity/Read-50.tar.bz2;
http://dev.laptop.org/~morgan/bundles/Read-50.xo) Key fixes/features
include fixing several problems involving shared documents; keeping a
bookmark across sessions; and inclusion of a preview thumbnail image
in the Journal for PDFs.

7. Activities survey: Morgan Collett has published a survey of the
current state of support for many core Activities (Please see

8. PlayGo: Andrés Ambrois has made significant progress on the Go
Activity. Version 3 (http://dev.laptop.org/~aa/PlayGo/PlayGo-3.xo)
includes Journal integration, options to set the board size, more
robust collaboration, integration with GnuGo for playing against an
AI, and scoring under Japanese rules. Andrés is hoping someone will
design a "new kick-ass" icon for the Go Activity.

=== Sugar Labs ===

9. Self-organizing map (SOM): Gary Martin has generated another SOM
from the past week of discussion on the IAEP mailing list (Please see


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