[IAEP] What do I want "Big Time" To Be?
echerlin at gmail.com
Mon Nov 2 20:49:23 EST 2009
On Sun, Nov 1, 2009 at 11:30, Caryl Bigenho <cbigenho at hotmail.com> wrote:
> Hi All,
> When I asked if SoaS was ready for "Big Time", Martin replied, "What do you
> mean? I'd recommend it but I don't know enough about what you want."
> So here is what I mean and want...
Agreed. I would like to emphasize that after the successful demos,
teachers should be able to go back to their schools and get started
without having to call on us for assistance. That means that
o They can find the download page through Google, even if they don't
have a URL. That works now to get to
http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Sugar_on_a_Stick, if they can remember
the name. If they can't, we have to think about what they will look
o The download is automatic and trouble-free. Currently, no, according
to http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Sugar_on_a_Stick/Strawberry, which
puts the download locations on the third screen down, and talks about
Bittorrent, SHA hashes, downloading extra software, and other issues.
o There is an automated installer, so that no technical knowledge is needed. No.
o The installer offers to make a boot CD, and explains how the user
can tell whether one is needed. No.
o Enough documentation, tutorials, demos, and sample lesson plans are
included so that our teacher can convince other teachers that this is
worth their time, and also administrators and parents. We have made a
good start, but there is much more to be done.
Or, alternatively, we can point them to a ready supplier of CDs and
sticks with Sugar already installed.
Another way to look at this is through one of Fred Brooks's Laws from
The Mythical Man-Month:
The difference between a program you can use and a program you can
sell is three times the effort. (Brooks's principal Law is: Adding
manpower to a late software project makes it later.)
Hofstadter's Law also applies:
Projects tend to take twice as long as expected, even when you have
taken account of Hofstadter's Law.
Also stated as:
The first 90% of the work takes the first 90% of the time, and the
remaining 10% of the work takes the other 90% (sic) of the time.
Why is there never time to do a job right, but always time to do it over?
All of these laws have been amply verified during XO and Sugar
development. We are only as far advanced as we currently are because
this is not a commercial operation.
> I would like to be able to go into a room (or exhibit hall) filled with
> overworked, underpaid educators and while showing them Sugar on the XO, tell
> them they can run some of the same (and some even better) Activities on the
> equipment they already have at their schools... and that they can do it for
> free (free is good).
Free is the only way to get around the competing forces that have made
the schools' acquisition process such a bureaucratic nightmare.
> I would like them to get really excited about being able to get something
> for their students that is not only sound educationally, but that they can
> afford because the download is free. Their only cost is their chosen storage
The real question is whether they are allowed to use it on existing
school computers, even though it will not be installed and will not
affect what is installed.
> I would like to be able to show them how it works on a MacBook (my machine)
> and on a PC (if someone would just tell me how to get one for very little
> $$$). I would like it to be stable software that runs on their choice of
> Live CD or USB stick.
> I would like to be able to give them links for downloading it and for
> getting other Activities.
Done. SoaS Wiki page and a.s.l.o.
> I would like to be able to give them links for
> very easy to follow instructions for downloading and using the software.
Currently, easy for techies.
"So simple, even a 12-year old can understand it. Quick, someone get
me a 12-year-old!"--Groucho Marx
> And, I would like to be able to give them links to a place they can get help
> if they get stuck.
Right. That should be on the SoaS page. Instead, we ask them whether
they would like to help us.
> I know some of these things exist already but, unless I have missed
> something, most of them don't. My next presentation to educators will be at
> the CUELA/LAUSD Tech Fair on November 14.
> How much of this is real already? How much is in the dim and distant
> future? Send links!
> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
> IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org
Edward Mokurai (默雷/धर्ममेघशब्दगर्ज/دھرممیگھشبدگر ج) Cherlin
Silent Thunder is my name, and Children are my nation.
The Cosmos is my dwelling place, the Truth my destination.
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