[Sugar-devel] [Design] Home views and Journal integration

Frederick Grose fgrose at gmail.com
Thu Jul 22 15:39:22 EDT 2010

On Wed, Jul 21, 2010 at 4:34 PM, Frederick Grose <fgrose at gmail.com> wrote:

> Daniel posted this on devel at lists.laptop.org (
> http://lists.laptop.org/pipermail/devel/2010-July/029403.html):
> On 20 July 2010 12:33, Reuben K. Caron <reuben at laptop.org> wrote:
> > So what if we created a "Library Activity"
> > The activity would:
> > -Open a book from within the activity
> > -Highlight and annotate books
> > -List all of the books you have downloaded
> > -Allow you to search and download additional books from Feed Books,
> > Internet Archive, the XS, etc..
> > -List the resources in /home/olpc/Library (so this can be removed from
> > Browse)
> > -Allow one to synchronously or asynchronously share a book to their
> > Neighborhood so anyone can download and read it.
>> I'd argue that some of this is duplication of functionality that
> belongs (or already is) in the Journal and the Read activity, having
> such a design might kill some UI complications but add others.
>> Parts of your concerns could be addressed with some ideas I wrote here:
>> http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Features/Content_support#Accessing_content_from_home_screen
>> I agree that this definitely merits further design/discussion.
>> Daniel
> Concerning the Journal, Gary commented (
> http://lists.laptop.org/pipermail/devel/2010-July/029404.html):
> I'd lean towards improving the Journal with a grid view and background
>> sharing, as it could provide much the same thing for _all_ activities not
>> just books (Alekseys Library was along this vector, as are I think his plans
>> for future Journal). Journal is really in need of love, and a plan, for so
>> long now :)
>> Regards,
>> --Gary
> Walter and others have commented at
> http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Talk:Features/Content_support.
>       --Fred

Yioryos added in a new thread (
(with minor edits)

OK. I'll try to be "technical" but ignore things that are difficult or not
> possible at the moment :-)

Step 1 is a Library kind of activity, let's call it "tutor" where the user
> will be able to aggregate different journal entries from Read, Write,
> Browse, Wikipedia, image, video, Physics activity, Pippy etc. (you get the
> idea) and order them at will.

Step 2 is to embed this activity in the Read and Write activity and present
> it optionally in a separate window.  Clicking on individual entries
> transposes you to the relevant point.

Step 3 is to introduce marks (hyperlinks?) in Read and Write where hovering
> over you get the tag opened to tell you what it is about, and clicking
> transposes you to the relevant book/app-mark

Step 4 is to be able to also write from any application to "tutor", e.g.,
> when you add a Journal bookmark, you also have the option to add it into a
> specific "tutor" and preferably to a specific (order) point.

Step 5 is to be able to "publish" or share your "tutor" the way kids share
> class notes. I could bet this is going to be a popular activity, and it
> actually better copes with the multitude of learning styles that kids have.

> Regarding PDF, we know that there are applications that allow one to
> highlight, insert bookmarks, notes or hyperlinks in  PDF documents. I do not
> know if Evince can do all these. I just know that it is doable.

This features request might best be satisfied by improving Activity
integration in Sugar (as Daniel suggests).

http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Talk:Features/Content_support has a proposal to
more tightly integrate the Home view with Journal favorites.

The "Tutor" activity, above, could be implemented through the persistence of
Journal favorites, where groups of Journal entry objects are made favorites
under a common tag, the Journal group name, (a new, multi-item tagging tool
is needed).  The learner or tutor could assemble a group of entries in their
Journal.  The group object (a bundle of bundles) could then be inserted into
a document, such as a lesson plan or lesson, and the associated Journal
items would be available to the learner.

We also need the JEB hyperlink that Yioryos calls for, which can be inserted
in all activities, and which would call up the Journal detail page for the
item (probably in a large hovering dialog like the control panel) allowing
one to preview the target Activity and approve of launching it in a
Bitfrost-compliant manner.

The JEBlinks could be ordered by their position in their container document,
by their position in the proposed Home favorites group view, or by a
sort-order-attribute determined by dragging the entry around in the Journal.

Of course, as each set is a proper mathematical subset, the Journal group
object (the Journal bundle of bundles, JBB) would permit nesting (up to
memory or storage limits), so structured trees of objects could be prepared
for advanced purposes.

I'm not sure if this page for Journal entry bundles is up-to-date,
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Journal_entry_bundles, but may it may be a
starting point for describing the software structure.

There may, of course, be interruptions if the proper software version is not
currently installed in the Sugar instance, after the JEBlinks have been
shared.  But that's another story or case for Zero Sugar,
http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Activity_Team/Zero_Sugar, or enhanced
collaboration within the Sugar Neighborhood.

Adding these features to Sugar would be a big step toward seamlessness, a
nice sweetener for our communities and learning environments.
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