[sugar] Sugar Digest 2008-06-02
Mon Jun 2 13:48:02 EDT 2008
=== Sugar Digest ===
1. Software Freedom Conservancy: Sugar Labs is entering discussions
with the Software Freedom Conservancy (Please see
http://conservancy.softwarefreedom.org/overview/). If we are accepted
into the Conservancy, we'd join projects such as Inkscape, Samba, and
Wine. The Conservancy provides member projects with free financial and
administrative services, but does not involve itself with
technological and artistic decisions.
2. Governance: We will be gathering in Milan at the end of the month
of June to discuss, among other things, possible models of governance
for Sugar Labs. More details will follow soon.
3. Linux Foundation: Walter Bender and Jim Zemlin (Executive Director
of the Linux Foundation) met to discuss ways in which we could work
together. The Linux Foundation "hosts collaboration events among the
Linux technical community, application developers, industry, and end
users", manages a "Technical Fellowships Fund" to ensure key projects
get accomplished, and helps promote Linux regionally. Obviously lots
of synergy with the Sugar Labs mission!
4. UMPC abundance: The success of the OLPC XO and the ASUS Eee PC
seems to have attracted the attention of the industry: it has been a
busy week in the world of ultra-mobile PCs. Dell (See
Acer (See http://www.engadget.com/2008/05/29/first-pics-of-acers-aspire-one-eee-pc-twin/),
Elonix (See http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS8294433279.html), and
Kanguru (See http://pc.kanguru.pt/Home/) were all making headlines.
Each of these machines represents yet another potential platform for
=== Community jams and meetups ===
5. PyOhio: Catherine Devlin is helping to organize a regional
miniconference on Python programming Saturday, July 26, in Columbus,
Ohio (Please see http://pyohio.org). Ralph Hyre, a Sugar community
organizer in Cincinnati, suggested that someone might be willing to
present on Sugar (and OLPC project). It is just past the date for
their "call for proposals", but they may be willing to accept a late
submission. (Please email Mat Kovach <matkovach at gmail.com> or call at
6. Sugar tip of the week: How to install activities. There a several
ways to manually install new activities in Sugar:
(A) You can use xo-get from the Terminal activity (See
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Xo-get for the details). Find activities by
Install activities by typing:
./xo-get.py install <activity-name>
./xo-get.py install simcity
./xo-get.py install /media/<USB stick name>/simcity.xo
(B) You can also install pre-bundled activities from the Terminal
activity or, if you have an XO laptop, from a customization key (See
./sugar-install-bundle /media/<USB stick name>/<Activity name.xo>
(C) You can install activities from the browser, either over the
internet or from USB (See
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Browse#Install_an_activity for details):
a. open the Browse Activity
b. point it to an activity bundle, e.g.,
file:///media/<USB stick name>/Scratch-5.xo
c. When the download is complete, a journal entry will have been
created. "Resume" the activity from the journal. Hence forth, it will
appear in the list of installed activities.
7. SocialCalc: Dan Bricklin has been hard at work on the base
SocialCalc code. In the next few weeks he hopes to have a new build
for availale. It will include a new tab with "Settings" that shows all
of the attributes of the current cell and sheet; it provides access to
all of the formatting options, including custom formats and colors,
padding, fonts, etc. Also, it should be better suited for localization
in that it will have a single Constants file with pretty much all of
the customizable values for the spreadsheet engine (but not the UI
above the sheet yet). At the point of this new release, Dan thinks we
should have something very useful for people to try.
8. Metacity: Sayamindu Dasgupta has been experimenting with replacing
Matchbox with a Metacity as the window manager that runs behind Sugar.
Despite the fact that the Sugar UI is different from a standard
desktop, it is almost completely implemented using standard window
manager hints and properties, thus a move to a more compliant window
manager will make it possible to run standard desktop applications
directly within Sugar (Please follow the discussion at
A RPM of Sayamindu's patch is available for download
however, he warns that you should *not* install this patch on your
standard desktop machine yet. Things which have not been resolved yet
include: (1) Some activities tend to go into full screen mode
automatically; (2) Activity switching does not work yet; (3) Some
palettes and windows are placed incorrectly; (4) The mouse cursor
theme switches back to the normal (default??) one; and (5) Memory
usage with compositing enabled is high.
9. Rainbow: Michael Stone released rainbow-0.7.13 with a fix for
#6989, a problem that was interfering with the launching of the Browse
10. Automated testing: Michael has offered Xen hosting for Sugar Labs'
automated testing efforts. (Xen is a FOSS standard for
virtualization?please see http://xen.org for details.)
11. Wikipedia activity: Chris Ball has made the first release of the
Wikipedia activity, which contains a
30,000 article offline snapshot of the Spanish Wikipedia with 3,000
images. The activity is based on code from Patrick Collison's
"wikipedia-iphone" project; this version was mostly developed by
community volunteers: thanks to Wade Brainerd (porting from the
wikipedia-iphone code to a Python activity, fixing parser bugs), Ben
Schwartz (image download and scaling, bug-fixing) and Madeleine Ball
(algorithms for article and image selection). Please see
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/WikiBrowse for the download and more
12. Chat: Morgan Collett worked on private invites for Chat, although
his final testing was blocked by a palette problem in Sugar. Morgan
has also filed a patch for Ticket #5767 that uses black text on light
fill colors to improve legibility.
13. Browse: Tomeu Visozo has added some more palette options to
content in Browse, including copy, paste, undo, redo commands to the
Browse toolbar. (Tomeu also fixed a problem with activity order in the
activity list and shell.)
14. Icons: Scott Ananian has added a bit of functionality to his
(still incomplete) icon-draw-activity; it is on the path to becoming a
complete "convert SVGs into proper Sugar icons" tool. (Please see
details.) Scott also filed bugs with improved icons for scratch
(#7140), gcompris (#7138), paint (#7139), turtle art (#6836), and
=== Sugar Labs ===
15. LinuxTag: Simon reports that Members of the Sugar community
(Please see http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Image:LinuxTag-2008-Bernie-Reinier-Marco-Simon-Bert-Tomeu.jpg)
met this weekend at the Linuxtag 2008 (http://www.linuxtag.org/2008/)
in Berlin. Besides meeting people in person and the usual putting
faces to names, they discussed the current situation of Sugar: hot
topics Sugar on multiple platforms and the structure Sugar Labs.
Thanks to OLPC Germany and especially to Holger Levsen, there was also
an opportunity to give an introduction to Sugar to the winners of an
Idea Contest (http://wiki.olpc-deutschland.de/Start?action=AttachFile&do=view&target=LinuxTag-2008-OLPC-Deutschland-Developers.jpg).
Robert Krahn gave a tutorial about using Squeak on the XO and Wolfgang
Rohrmoser handed out a
XO-Live CD (ftp://rohrmoser-engineering.de/pub/XO-LiveCD/) to people
who were interested in trying out Sugar on their machines.
16. SOM: Gary Martin has prepared this weeks SOM of the
its.an.education.project list (Please see
Organization and governance seem to be hot topics (The list archive
can be found at
17. Wiki: David Farning has been very busy organizing the Sugar Labs
wiki. His focus has been on building a framework to support teams
within the community:
* AccessibiltyTeam - Responsible for accessibility issues within Sugar.
* BugSquad - Responsible for locating and fixing bugs.
* BuildTeam - Responsible for creating daily and release builds.
* DevelopmentTeam - Responsible for Developing the software modules
* DocumentationTeam - Responsible for writing both user and technical
* EducationTeam - Responsible for setting the Educational goals for
the sugar Community.
* MarketingTeam - Responsible for marketing the Sugar brand and product.
* ReleaseTeam - Responsible for shipping the current release and
planning for up coming releases.
* Sugar Labs - Responsible for governance and fund raising.
* TranslationTeam - Responsible for the translation needs of the community.
* UITeam - Responsible for the User interface.
* WikiTeam - Responsible for the Sugar Labs wiki.
The community portal (http://wiki.sugarlabs.org/go/Community) has a
link to each teams' section within the wiki.
More information about the Sugar-devel