[IAEP] [Sur] Sugar oversight board meeting

Sean DALY sdaly.be at gmail.com
Thu Nov 7 04:07:56 EST 2013

I'm sorry Sebastian, yes I should have been more clear about which
Sebastian :-)

At the time, Sugar was perceived as being only available on OLPC XOs, so
our effort was designed to show that it was available for other platforms.
Indeed, our claim has always been that it was hardware-agnostic (on Mac
using virtualization), cf. our press releases (sl.o/press). And, SoaS as a
marketing concept was meant to be distro-agnostic too (SuSE...), a position
fought tooth and nail by the Fedorans by the way.

Pre-tablets, when small netbooks sales were exploding, Windows was dominant
on PCs but ran poorly or not at all on netbooks and moreover there was an
installation barrier for Windows on GNU/Linux netbooks. We were interested
in reaching the 92% or so of teachers using Windows and widening Sugar
availability on machines with pre-installed GNU/Linux (all 2% or so of
them). Microsoft and Intel worked quickly to block GNU/Linux netbooks by
pressuring OEMs to build faster machines, then tablets arrived and killed
off netbooks.

It's unfortunate that Sugar was not fully embraced by the GNU/Linux distros
who missed a great opportunity in the education market where Microsoft had
and has weaknesses, but that has been a symptom of free software projects
struggling with strategic initiatives while concentrating on technical
aspects. Dismal marketing has contributed to dismal desktop market share
(Microsoft's well-documented maneuvers played a role too of course).

Installation: As Peter has mentioned, SoaS can be used for installation on
a target PC, this is documented in the wiki.

Concerning translations, language selection was available in at least
several versions of SoaS, I remember switching French and US locale and
keyboard demoing SoaS at an Educatec-Educatice convention in Paris. I have
no doubt that solutions are possible, but do remember that Peter has been
continuing SoaS work singlehandedly for some time now.

Looking forward, I see a dual challenge for Sugar Labs: supporting the XO
installed base (including hopefully keeping XO-4 availability alive), and
transitioning to the wild new world of handheld devices.


On Thu, Nov 7, 2013 at 12:21 AM, Sebastian Silva
<sebastian at fuentelibre.org>wrote:

> El 06/11/13 17:35, Sean DALY escribió:
>  On Mon, Nov 4, 2013 at 11:05 PM, Peter Robinson <pbrobinson at gmail.com>wrote:
>> But you have for a long time refused to actually even market SoaS!
> That's right, at the time SoaS became an official Fedora spin, Mel and
> Sebastian decided to take over marketing, which included coming up with
> unmarketable names, linking with Fedora announcements, and opening a Fedora
> hosted minisite (the "home" of SoaS), none of which was done with any
> consultation of the SL marketing team.
>  Please try to include last names, you mean Sebastian Dzallas, original
> developer of "Sugar On A Stick".
> Now that we're on the topic... the concept "Sugar On A Stick" has several
> problems.
> 1.- It suggests it's the only possible Sugar OS on a USB.
> 2.- It suggests it's not a serious OS to be installed on a computer.
> 3.- It's impossible to translate.
> 4.- It suggests it's not regular GNU/Linux, with availability of the
> Myriad other GNU/Linux educational tools.
> Regards,
> Sebastian Silva
> R+D SomosAzúcar
> Sugar Labs Perú
> @icarito
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