[IAEP] [Sugar-devel] Planning for the future (Samuel Greenfeld)

Caryl Bigenho cbigenho at hotmail.com
Sat Feb 28 01:17:25 EST 2015

Thanks for your thoughtful "from the field" answers! We need more of them.  I think I'll ask my friend Rosamel in Uruguay what she thinks and if she might ask some of her collegues too. Mañana. I have to do it in Spanish so I'll wait until morning when I am thinking clearly.

Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2015 22:40:17 -0500
Subject: Re: [IAEP] [Sugar-devel] Planning for the future (Samuel Greenfeld)
From: sora at unleashkids.org
To: cbigenho at hotmail.com
CC: quozl at laptop.org; me at jvonau.ca; holt at laptop.org; iaep at lists.sugarlabs.org; sugar-devel at lists.sugarlabs.org; lionel at olpc-france.org; samuel at greenfeld.org

On Fri, Feb 27, 2015 at 10:13 PM, Caryl Bigenho <cbigenho at hotmail.com> wrote:

Someone remarked that teachers don't like to use Sugar. If not,… why not?
Ask them!I hate to say that the user's not always right, but in Haiti at least, some of the teachers are disappointed when they see Sugar because they were expecting Windows. They've never used Windows, and they don't know what it can and can't do, but they do know that's the software you have to master in order to get a job. We ask our Haitian staff to speak during training about the advantages they've seen using Sugar with kids. I constantly repeat my mantra "We're not learning to use computers; we're using computers to learn. But it doesn't always work.  
Obviously, the teachers in Uruguay like it and use it. But not all of it.
So, do a survey of teachers who do use it and find the 10 or 20 top Activities and then concentrate on getting them ported to a more universal platform (e.g. Android). When I was there a few years back I did ask them… and the students. The hands-down winner was Labyrinth!Yep, Labyrinth is fantastic (the mind-mapping one, although the maze isn't bad either). Folks also like Fototoon, and the music software never gets enough credit. But I'm just reporting what I've seen and what we wrote up in our curriculum guide. I'd be up for sending out an actual survey. 
How important is collaboration? Ask the teachers!
Can collaboration be implemented on an Android platform? If not, is there an easy work around?I hope so. I know in Haiti the teachers don't use it very often, but that's partly because it requires a new method of thinking about implementing lessons and that can be tricky. It's something I always emphasize in follow-up training sessions; once the teachers and students have gotten a basic grasp of the technology they start exploring other possibilities like this. 
One other thing I should mention about some Sugar Activities… some of them really lack color. When you look at the typical "educational" software for children, it is always bright and colorful with very simple artwork… maybe too much so. It also often has cute little tunes playing in the background. Teachers, parents, and children have grown to expect this in educational software. Perhaps considering brightening up the screens a bit on some of the Activities would be something to experiment with. I've been reading a lot about e-books and digital education for school for the past few weeks. One thing that keeps coming up is the line between "engaging" and "distracting." As you say, bright and colorful with music is what people have come to expect, but unless it's very tightly integrated with what kids are doing it doesn't really enhance the experience. Another case where the user may not be right...but what can you do? 
> Date: Sat, 28 Feb 2015 10:40:01 +1100
> From: quozl at laptop.org
> To: me at jvonau.ca
> CC: iaep at lists.sugarlabs.org; sugar-devel at lists.sugarlabs.org; lionel at olpc-france.org; samuel at greenfeld.org
> Subject: Re: [IAEP] [Sugar-devel] Planning for the future (Samuel Greenfeld)
> On Thu, Feb 26, 2015 at 03:31:50PM +1100, James Cameron wrote:
> > On Wed, Feb 25, 2015 at 04:20:02PM -0600, Jerry Vonau wrote:
> > > > On February 25, 2015 at 3:09 PM James Cameron <quozl at laptop.org> wrote:
> > > > On Wed, Feb 25, 2015 at 01:20:19PM -0600, Jerry Vonau wrote:
> > > > > I know this is not a sugar issue directly, more of an OLPC issue
> > > > > but since Fedora F12 the entire i686 platform's userland is
> > > > > being compiled with -mtune=atom which would use sse. This causes
> > > > > problems for some parts of sugar now that java is being used
> > > > > more and the XO-1 lacks sse.  Fixing one package that uses sse
> > > > > might fix one issue but this is really a distro wide setting and
> > > > > other issues may float to the top in other areas.
> > > >
> > > > Thanks, wasn't aware -mtune=atom was being used upstream.  It
> > > > explains a lot.  First build after Fedora 11 was 11.2.0 (os874)
> > > > using Fedora 14.  So if we rebuild everything there may be an
> > > > improvement?  That's probably something that can be set running as
> > > > a test.
> > > >
> > > 
> > > Wouldn't all the rpms used need to be recompiled to ensure mtune is
> > > set to match throughout the distro?
> > 
> > Don't think so.  Check my logic:
> > 
> > The GCC documentation you referenced described -mtune as "Tune to
> > cpu-type everything applicable about the generated code, except for
> > the ABI and the set of available instructions. "
> > 
> > -march is more significant, as "Generate instructions for the machine
> > type cpu-type. The choices for cpu-type are the same as for
> > -mtune. Moreover, specifying -march=cpu-type implies
> > -mtune=cpu-type. "
> > 
> > If the ABI were different between i586 and i686 arch, that would be
> > very interesting.
> > 
> > > Tall order IMHO, good luck
> > 
> > ;-)
> > 
> > For the moment, I'm doing a mock --rebuild of webkitgtk3 with
> > --arch=i586, and the logs so far show "-march=i586 -mtune=generic"
> > instead of "-march=i686 -mtune=atom":
> This didn't change the problem, gdb core still showed SSE instructions
> used.
> Daniel Drake's change to WebKit that fixed this before has since been
> lost in the current WebKit sources in git.  Patch is in the history,
> but some later patch removed the change.
> > 
> > $ grep mtune build.log | grep i586 | wc --lines
> > 8564
> > $ grep mtune build.log | grep atom | wc --lines
> > 0
> > $ 
> > 
> > > Jerry
> > 
> > -- 
> > James Cameron
> > http://quozl.linux.org.au/
> -- 
> James Cameron
> http://quozl.linux.org.au/
> _______________________________________________
> IAEP -- It's An Education Project (not a laptop project!)
> IAEP at lists.sugarlabs.org
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