[IAEP] Sugar Digest 2008-09-08

Walter Bender walter.bender at gmail.com
Mon Sep 8 11:18:52 EDT 2008

=== Sugar Digest ===

1. Oversight Board: The Sugar Labs Oversight Board meet on Friday (See
the minutes at http://sugarlabs.org/go/Sugar_Labs/OversightBoard/Minutes#Friday_5_September_2008_-_14.00_.28UTC.29).
The bulk of the discussion was in regard to the formation of
committees: David Farning will organize/liaison with the Membership
committee; Greg Dekoenigsberg  will organize/liaison with the Events
committee; Bernie Innocenti will organize/liaison with the
Infrastructure committee; Simon Schampijer will organize/liaison with
the Test committee; I will organize/liaison with the Deployment
committee. Please contact us if you have interested in participating
on one of these committees. The next meeting will be Friday, 19
September at 14:00 UTC (10 AM EST) on irc.freenode.net
#sugar-meeting—please join us.

2. Study on the impact of ICT on educational outcomes: I spent an hour
on phone with Nitika Tolani-Brown, a Research Analyst with the
International Development Program at the American Institutes for
Research. She and her colleagues are "conducting a comprehensive
analysis of reliable research undertaken to date on the deployment of
low-cost ICT to support education goals around the world with an
emphasis on the developing world. The purpose of the study is to
increase understanding of the impact of ICT on educational outcomes in
children and adults and, ultimately, to generate an innovative
research agenda to address salient issues." We discussed Sugar Labs,
its goals and the status of the various Sugar deployments around the
world. They are keen to get more input for their report. Feel free to
contact Nitika (ntolani-brown AT air.org) with your thoughts on
"current projects as they relate to the use of ICT in educational
settings within developing countries, any evaluations conducted on
these projects (or evaluations of other projects that you may know
of), as well as your perceptions on the challenges users and
developers of ICT solutions face and the future of this field." Their
report will be posted publicly towards the end of the calendar year.

3. Field reports: There have been some brief reports coming in from
Sugar trials, notably Rodolfo Pilas's report on the olpc-sur list
and Waveplace blog (http://waveplace.com/news/blog/). Any and all
feedback is enormously valuable: please speak up.

4. Regional Sugar development teams: There are several regional
initiatives in the formative stages that are looking for feedback in
terms of how to best structure themselves. In an effort to increase
the level of participation in the developing world, it is being
proposed to build local teams to work full time on the further
development and support of Sugar as a vehicle both for advancing the
opportunity for a quality education for the children of the region and
to create a viable community around free and open-source software, a
major movement internationally that is fueling innovative technology
and economic growth, but that has yet to take root in much of the
developing world. Local groups are seeking funding for three years,
after which they expect to have a self-sustaining enterprise that also
serves as a focal point for entrepreneurship and job creation. Any
input on how to best structure such initiatives and from whence to
seek funding would be appreciated.

=== Community jams and meetups ===

5. FUDCon Brno 2008: Christoph Derndorfer reports from Brno that Sugar
Labs had a strong presence at FUDCon (attending were Tomeu Vizoso,
Marco Pesenti Gritti, Simon Schampijer, Bernie Innocenti—freshly back
after 2 1/2 months of volunteering at OLE Nepal—Daniel Jahre,
Christoph Derndorfer, and Greg deKoenigsberg). A presentation which
focused on the Sugar platform, Sugar Labs and especially how the
Fedora community can support the ongoing efforts was held at
Saturday's barcamp. In addition Tomeu, Marco, Simon and Bernie spent a
lot of time refining the 0.84 roadmap and feature plan. There were
also many lively discussions about the current state of Sugar / Sugar
Labs and many ideas, plans and to-dos for the weeks and months ahead
were written down. They will be posted on the IAEP mailing-list and
appropriate places in the wiki once everyone has recovered from FUDCon

=== Tech Talk ===

6. Sucrose: Simon Schampijer reports that the Sugar release team has
released the 0.82.1 Sucrose stable release
(http://sugarlabs.org/go/ReleaseTeam/Releases/Sucrose/0.82.1). Owners
of an XO can test it in in latest joyride or the stable 8.2 branch >=

7. Sugarbot: Zach Riggle reports progress on Sugarbot, a GUI
automation utility for the automating the testing of Sugar Activities.
Sugarbot supports
continuous integration with Buildbot, so that multiple platforms and
host configurations may be tested seamlessly; developers can more
readily perform regression testing on their Activities, enhancing
reliability and efficiency. A screencast of Sugarbot is available
ad the package is available (http://code.google.com/p/sugarbot/).

8. Beagleboard: Koen Kooi reports that the basics (sugar, sugar-base,
sugar-toolkit, sugar-presence-services and sugar-artwork) are now
running on the beagleboard (See

9. X: Bert Freudenberg wrote the long-awaited X Activity (See
org.laptop.wiki.XActivity and download it from
http://wiki.laptop.org/images/b/b4/X-1.xo). Thus Sugar now supports an
X11 desktop as an Activity that can run regular X11 applications.

10. Testing: There has been great feedback from various individuals
and teams testing Sugar and Sugar Activities, including the
"Wellington testers", Gary Martin, Douglas Ridgway, "Team Perú", and
Mikus Grinbergs. Many thanks for your efforts.

11. FLOSS Manuals: The manuals for a number of Sugar Activities are
now published (including manuals for Write, Terminal, Chat, Browse,
Record, and TurtleArt). Please help us improve these manuals by going
to http://en.flossmanuals.net/write where the editable versions
reside. Note that we are including tutorials and notes to parents and
teachers as part of the documentation effort. Helping expanding these
sections would be greatly appreciated.

=== Sugar Labs ===

12. 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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