[IAEP] Topics & deliverables from Marketing IRC meeting 03-03-2009: Sugar 8.4 launch date set!

Jonas Smedegaard dr at jones.dk
Sat Mar 7 04:53:18 EST 2009

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On Sat, Mar 07, 2009 at 01:36:37AM +0100, Sean DALY wrote:
>Bert made a very astute observation: we need to be Googlable. Luke is 
>quite right, Sugar by itself is ungooglable and Sugar "needs" Labs 
>close by in this context.

Searching just for the single word "sugar" in Google have Sugar Labs 
rank 6th in my experience, and OLPC Sugar page ranks 4th.

>Jonas makes the excellent suggestion to baptise the version with a
>name. It's a good way to reduce the importance of the version number
>in communicating. I fear that unfortunately, honoring chocolate barons
>may not be the best path... the biggest names were part and parcel of
>the colonial era :-( and some names including Van Houten are
>registered trademarks which will be zealously protected so off-limits

Do you say that Chocolate companies have registering their trademarks not 
only in the context of Chocolate but also in the context of computing?

Even if so, we can then use first name (like Debian does): Coenraad.

I see no problem in picking names of "evil" people - quite the contrary: 
Colonialism is an integral part of the history of World society - and 
here is an excuse to tell one of the stories about it.

Coenraad did not "invent" chocolate, but industrialized it. Brought it 
to the masses. Just like Sugar draws from inventions of others but have 
real power in what is done on its own. With industrialism also is evil 
powers - just as OLPC is challenged by "the dark side" of the computing. 
And I am not only thinking financially here, but also the dilemma of 
pursuing novel ideas of human interface design contra pleasing the 
expectations of the masses by reusing classic concepts. With the 
industrialization of chocolate, Coenraad also have a small part in the 
destruction of the rain forests, in that naturally growing cocoa trees 
might produce the richest flavoured beans but not the largest produce - 
so they were systematically cut down and replaced with more effective 
breeds of cocoa trees - to the extend that today most of the original 
sorts of cocoa is distinct.

By picking Coenraad we do not make him a saint. We acknowledge his 
importance in the world of Sugar. Both the parallel world of that thing 
to put in your mouth, and our world of bringing back balance in 
knowledge among kids globally - a balance skewed by people like 

>I propose a different approach... a roadmap approach, meant to 
>reinforce SoaS. Netbooks are the fastest growing category in the 
>industry; they are the cheapest; there is already a wide number of 
>them; after the XO, the Classmate etc. are the likeliest candidates for 
>school deployments. Journalists are on the lookout for netbook-related 
>stories; they know netbooks are Microsoft's weakest point. So maybe we 
>should baptise 0.84 "Sugar Netbook Version".

You want to ride on the tide of netbooks? Then emphasize in press texts 
that Sugar was *born* in netbooks, several years before that word was 
coined in the media. I don't think there is a single changelog entry 
specifically targeted netbooks in the new release, so emphasizing it as 
such stinks. And I fear journalists will smell that.

Aren't we the educational guys? Shouldn't we then be more powerful and 
base even our marketing on facts?

One fact is that Sugar is unique in the computing industry in its 
targeting kids globally - and especially poor ones (some of which is 
suffering from the consequences of people and mindset like that of

  - Jonas

- -- 
* Jonas Smedegaard - idealist og Internet-arkitekt
* Tlf.: +45 40843136  Website: http://dr.jones.dk/

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