[sugar] Sugar Digest 2008-10-13

Walter Bender walter.bender
Mon Oct 13 20:34:26 EDT 2008

=== Sugar Digest ===

1. Collect, Select, Reflect: I had a timely visit from Prof.
Evangeline Harris Stefanakis this week. Stefanakis is the author of
Multiple Intelligences and Portfolios: a Window into the Learner's
Mind. We met to discuss ways in which we could further the support for
portfolio assessment within the context of a Sugar deployment. Some of
her observations include that a portfolio is not just a collection of
work, but also a way of organizing that work into a presentation.
(Note the obvious connection to the heated discussions on narrative
and the Journal/datastore.) We discussed a number of simple scaffolds
that we could add either directly to the Journal or build into a
Portfolio Activity, for example, the inclusion of a "who am I?"
section, where the learner is prompted to describe who they are across
a multitude of prespectives: who am I as a linguist... as an artist...
as a friend... We also discussed how we could enhance the use of tags
by prompting the learner when their work is saved: What did you do?
How did you do it? What did you learn? Is it portfolio worthy?
Providing some structure?with multiple entry-points?helps bootstrap
the portfolio process. We should consider different structures for
different levels of development within the early, elementary, and
middle-school years. A "Madlibs"-like format?that can be reauthored by
a teacher or student?may be a reasonable place to start. Also, a
scaffolding that encourages periodic review would also be beneficial
to the learner. We plan to come up with a more tangible set of design
criteria in the coming weeks. But it is helpful to discuss the Journal
as a tool for reflection, not just as a replacement for the file

2. LiveCD/LiveUSB updates: Carolyn Meeks and Marco Pesenti Gritti
continue to work on improvements to the bootable Sugar USB. Marco has
a new Fedora-based LiveCD image
(http://www.sugarlabs.org/~marco/sugar-livecd-1marco.iso) and is
working on a CD that will launch a USB image (since many older
machines are not configured by default to boot off of a USB drive).
Sebatian Dziallas and Luke Macken have created an updated version of
the Fedora/Sugar LiveCD
(http://sdz.fedorapeople.org/olpc/sugar-spin.iso_ and has made a
LiveUSB creator available
(http://sdz.fedorapeople.org/olpc/liveusb-creator-3.0.zip)?you can run
liveusb-creator on Windows XP to generate the latest Sugar spin on a
USB key. Meanwhile, Carolyn continues to visit schools, testing
builds, and gathering data as to the best ways to do simple, low-risk
Sugar deployments in schools without the resources to buy dedicated

3. Roadmaps: David Farning is developing a community roadmap for Sugar
(to complement the development roadmap -- see
http://sugarlabs.org/go/ReleaseTeam/Roadmap). David has begun with a
list of features that are important for the future growth of Sugar
Labs: vision, distribution, deployment, quality assurance, and
infrastructure. Please help us fill in the schedule in the wiki

4. Blogs: The teachers in Uruguay are getting more active with their
blogs about using Sugar in the classroom. Their goal is to share
experiences (http://ceibalpuertosauce.blogspot.com/ is but one of many
examples). Add you Sugar-related blog to the list

=== Community jams, meetups, and meetings ===

5. Sugar calendars: We've added the developer meetings to the Sugar
meetings calendar; there is also now a Sugar Labs events calendar for
meetings, meet ups, sprints, etc. For information about how to access
these calendars, please see the Community page
(http://sugarlabs.org/go/Community#Calendar) in the wiki.

6. Lima translation sprint: 20?21 October in Lima, Per? at at the
Universidad San Martin, Faculta de Ingenier?a. (Av. La Fontana -
Urbanizaci?n Santa Patricia - Distrito: La Molina) Please contact
Rafael Enrique Ortiz Guerrero <dirakx AT gmail.com> for more details.

=== Tech Talk ===

7. Sugar API: Marco Pesenti Gritti, speaking on behalf of the
deployment team, has announced plans for refactoring and stabilizing
our public API. Please join the discussion at the next developer
meeting (irc.freenode.net #sugar-meeting Thursday, 16 October 2008,
14:00 UTC).

8. gconf: Simon Schampijer has been working on the transition to
gconf. He will land it in the next days. He also fixed the 'Reset
Registration with school servers' now completely #7764.

9. Upstream: Pyxpcom has been enabled in the Fedora 10 xulrunner
thanks to Cristopher Aillon. Marco has synced the xulrunner olpc3
package and fixed the hulahop package accordingly to these changes.
Simon has built the browse activity for fedora rawhide.

10. Sucrose 0.82 on Ubuntu: Morgan Collett has been working on the
Sugar Ubuntu packages; they have been updated to the latest 0.82
release in the Sugar Team PPA. Some activities are still being updated
at the moment, but should be up to date in the next few days.
Installation instructions:
    * sudo -s
    * echo deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/sugarteam/ubuntu hardy main >
    * apt-get update
    * apt-get install sugar sugar-emulator sugar-activities

A more up-to-date version of Sugar on Ubuntu is available if you add
the repository for Sugar 0.82 as described here:

Luke Faraone has been triaging Sugar-related bugs in Ubuntu's
Launchpad. Along with Morgs, he is a driving force behind the the
effort to get Sugar into the Ubuntu 8.10.

11. Sugar modules: There is time until 29 October to propose new
modules, and new activities in particular, to be part of the 0.84
release. If you are an activity maintainer and would like to propose
its inclusion please send mail to the Sugar list as per the
instructions (http://sugarlabs.org/go/ReleaseTeam#Module_release).

12. Activity updates: There are updates available for:


=== Sugar Labs ===

13. Self-organizing map (SOM): Gary Martin has generated another SOM
from the past week of discussion on the IAEP mailing list (Please see

Walter Bender
Sugar Labs

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