[Community-news] OLPC News (2008-12-28)

Jim Gettys jg at laptop.org
Mon Jan 5 09:12:48 EST 2009

Community News
A weekly update of One Laptop per Child December 29, 2008


Give One Get One:

1. Tyler Langendorfer and Brianne Connolly sent out more than a hundred
donation gift cards before Christmas to donors who gave one or more
laptops. Laptops have arrived in the UK and started shipping to
recipients. Some laptops were shipped just as they were being canceled
through the automated system, so Kim Quirk has emailed those donors,
requesting that they reorder.


2. Mel Chua organized a test review meeting in preparation for 8.2.1
testing. There was a good discussion about system testing as well as
release criteria and reporting on quality. Mel is working with the
community to encourage testing by many others.

Software Development:

3. XO Camp will be held in Cambridge, January 12th through the 16th.
This is an open meeting for technical design review of 9.1.0 features.
Review the agenda and sign up to participate at

4. Thanks to Skierpage, all well-defined feature requests are now
tracked in a single query-able
table:http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Feature_roadmap#All_features. In
addition, all 9.1.0 target features are here:

5. Eben Eliason took care of a wide assortment of small projects. Among
them: Reviewing and tidying the Human Interface Guide, and putting out a
call for suggestions and assistance in updating the document; creating
an icon for wired connections; creating an icon set for object
transfers; digging up some logos for trademark purposes; working on
designs for activity overlay-chat; reviewing the feature roadmap and My
Trac tickets; discussing the process for future laptop.org updates;
readying some small changes to the site; and, finally, discussing
details of the devices tray with Simon and the object transfer spec with

XO OS Software:

6. Erik Garrison, Richard Smith, Paul Fox, Michael Stone, Chris Ball and
C. Scott Ananian met with Dulmandakh Sukhbaatar, the new technical lead
of the Mongolian deployment team, and with Elana Langer. Topics ranged
from how to effectively communicate bug and feature requests to how to
do specific kinds of machine upgrades.

7. Michael worked with Erik, Reuben Caron and Emiliano Pastorino on a
variety of software items for Uruguay, including image signing, image
customization tools, and testing of patches for Trac #8976. He also
worked with Reuben, James Cameron and Bernie Innocenti. Michael
appreciates their fine assistance in picking up old work on both Puritan
and Rainbow.

8. C. Scott tackled 8.2.1 bugs this week and also set up a “staging”
branch on XS-dev for testing 8.2.1-series builds, based on the 8.2
stable repositories. Other work included dusting off the partition
support in olpcrd and olpc-update (Trac Nos. 616, 4156, 3581, 6246, 8111
and 8919). 

C. Scott also implemented a notify-based indexing frontend for Journal2
work. He learned too much about kernel/userland race conditions in the
process and forwarded those concerns upstream to the Linux-kernel
mailing list. 

9. Paul finished a prototype of the power button menu, and continued to
assist with OLPC's email outreach campaigns for G1G1.

10. Erik published rpmXO
athttp://dev.laptop.org/git?p=users/erik/rpmxo;a=summary, a small build
system in the style of DebXO which rests on the work of Steve Kemp on
the Rinse RPM build system. The work is not yet complete, but can be
used to make lightweight RPM-based XO-bootable images from Fedora 10
repositories. He provided patches to Steve Kemp to add Fedora 10 package
lists to Rinse. 

Erik also published a small script, the OLPC Image Digestor
(http://dev.laptop.org/git/users/erik/image-digestor), which can be used
to create the placement control files used by OFW during the reflash
process. He translated the documentation for this system into Spanish to
encourage use of the system by interested deployments in Latin America.
Erik discussed the porting of Socialcalc to the XO with Dan Bricklin. He
is excited by the web-service-as-application model which the software
suggests, and hopes the OLPC community investigates it further.

11. Deepak Saxena continued to look at resume-from-suspend timing. He
also updated the status of 9.1 kernel bugs and scripts to simplify
custom builds of OLPC kernels.

Sugar / Activity Software:

12. Sayamindu Dasgupta attacked the problem of making SCIM work with the
latest builds. He also fixed a critical commit support issue in Pootle
and pushed a large number of new translations into the Git. He worked
with the Sugar team and the Activity authors to ensure that the
Pootle-side repositories were properly updated during the migration to

13. Marco Pesenti Gritti continued testing the Jabber server that
Collabora has set up at jabber.sugarlabs.org. We haven't tested
scalability yet, but with a low number of users presence seems to be
very reliable, unlike using the shared roster implementation. The Sugar
buildbot is finally back after a couple of weeks downtime due to an
infrastructure issue. Several of the Sugar modules have been moved to
the gitorious instance at git.sugarlabs.org. Marco also fixed a couple
of annoying regressions with palettes in 0.83.

14. Simon Schampijer landed wired interface support for NM. Meantime, he
reviewed and reworked the “device appears” logic with Eben. He also
helped to get Sucrose 0.83.3 out the door. More information at
http://sugarlabs.org/go/DevelopmentTeam/Release/Releases/Sucrose/0.83.3and in the upcoming release announcement.

15. Morgan Collett added a "Reconnect collaboration server" button to
the Sugar control panel to enable on-the-fly switching of Jabber servers
without the need to restart Sugar. He also assisted with the sucrose Git
migration to git.sugarlabs.org and the Evince rebase to 2.24.

XS School Server Software:

16. Martin Langhoff worked on ejabberd+Moodle services. A minor XS-0.5.1
release is taking shape, and will probably be available after the
weekend to provide a few urgent bug fixes. Anna Schoolfield and others
have been playing with an XS install on an XO, for lightweight School
Server installations, and are reporting good progress.


17. Michail worked with Keith Jeng at Quanta to bring them up to speed
with testing Windows on the XO. He has released a test image to Quanta,
and showed them how to write the image on the SD card. Keith's testing
is underway. He already has tested the image on older motherboards. 

18. BSquare has received their test laptops for OFW qualification with
Windows XP. They will finalize their test arrangements before the new

And in Other News…

Greg's user links of the week: An update on the pilot in Nicaragua, and
links to two beautiful videos by the great team at
Waveplace:http://waveplace.com/sm/mailing/mail.jsp?id=13&msg=1174 and a
new blog for XO deployment in

Jim Gettys <jg at laptop.org>
One Laptop Per Child
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