[sugar] More than 10 Activities Solution?

Mike Sloman mikes
Thu May 24 20:25:21 EDT 2007

Hi all

I have browsed through the mail lists and the HIG docs but have found no 
mention for a scheme to cope with more than 10 Activities in the Actions 
  section of the frame.

If there is a documented solution can someone please point me to it.

If this is all obvious and taken care of please ignore the rest of the 


A the moment I have 11 Activities in the Action section of the frame. 
When do a screen rotate there is overspill of icons into corner of the 
frame. Add to that there is no room in rotated mode for any Activity 
Invites or Notifications.

The initial delivery may reduce the number of Activites shipped with the 
xo but after a while kids and teachers will develop and share their own 
and when installed will fill up the Action section of the frame, 
possibly causing problems with Sugar frame drawing and Notification/Invites.

A sensible limit on Activities in the frame would be 8max allowing 2 
slots for Invites and Notification icons to show unhindered. How to 
manage more than 8 Activities installed then?

=== Solution Step 1 (Temp,easily implemented in short term for 
development and framework for 2!)

* Modify Sugar Frame draw code to place only those 8 Activities listed 
in a flat text file say, /usr/share/Activities/SugarFrameActivities in 
the Actions section of the Frame.

* The Activities listed in this file are presented on the Frame in the 
order listed in the file even allowing spaces. (This allows kids to 
choose what they see and order)

* When installing a new xo bundle add to end of list if less than 8 
already  present or manually edit file.

=== Solution Step 2

* Write a small utility to allow users to select what 7 Activities go in 
the frame out of all installed.

* This utility is permanently in the Action Frame section thus max 
activities = 7 unless utility can be hidden elsewhere as a keystroke 
pull up [right BigHand and Frame Keys together?] or elsewhere on frame 
then 8.

* The utility graphically shows on one side the Activities in the frame 
in the order required by user and on the other side the remaining 
Activities. Users drag icons to and from the Activity pool to the frame 
contents list.

* The utility mainly manages the file that contains the list of those to 
expose in the frame.

* To initiate an Activity NOT in the frame just click on the icon in the 
pool and it should run and exit the utility. (perhaps double click or 
hover menu click to reduce accidentally starting activity instead of 
moving it to the Frame list side)

I realise this breaks some of the core design principles of Sugar but 
unless the school servers automatically remove user added Activities 
from the machines to keep numbers down there will come a time when more 
than can be fitted in the frame will be installed. It is better to 
address this now than wait for it to occur in the field.



Mike Sloman.

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