[sugar] [Community-news] where is Walter?

david at lang.hm david at lang.hm
Wed Apr 23 01:21:17 EDT 2008

On Tue, 22 Apr 2008, Edward Cherlin wrote:

> 2008/4/22 Martin Edmund Sevior <martines at unimelb.edu.au>:
>> I've stayed away from this discussion until now. But for my own part, if the
>> OLPC becomes just another laptop running "standard" educational software of
>> the kind that inhabits my daughters primary school, I'm no longer interested
>> in the project.
> Hear, hear!
>>  I really bought into the "new paradigm" of pervasive collaboration and
>> constructionist education. I'm not particularly interested in a cheap laptop
>> clone and in any case I guess my own work on Write and abicollab will be
>> ditched for some stripped down version of MS Word.
>>  It would nice to know if this is the new vision or not. If it is the new
>> vision I can stop wasting my time here.
> You can join the imminent fork of Sugar, and we can continue to do it
> right. It won't be the first time that an entire team has deserted an
> Open Source project leader, as Bruce Perens himself can tell you. He
> says that in several cases where a team left him, they were right and
> he was wrong.

If there is a fork, I would hope that it's not just a 'official OLPC' vs 
'the old OLPC software' fork. it need to split the existing OLPC software 
into seperate system and userspace pieces.

Sugar in an innovative approach to the UI, but there are lots of things 
about it that don't work well yet (the 7 seconds to start a trivial app 
through sugar, vs <1 sec outside of sugar for example)

I also think that the set of people who do very good work at the system 
level doesn't overlap much with the set of people who do very good work at 
the uer level, so seperating the two could let each group focus on what 
they're good at more and make faster progress.

for example, the current discussion about backups seems odd to me. from a 
system level there should be a half dozen backup implementations 
(especially since you know exactly where the data you need to backup and 
restore is). ideally these implementations would then each get a trivial 
GUI face added to them, and users could either choose between them, or the 
UI team(s) could pick the one that they like best for their 'feel' and 
enhance it.

instead there are a handful of partial scripts that nobody seems eager to 
work on becouse they can't be used without full integration into the GUI.

the XO hardware in extremely impressive (I have two of them, a roomate has 
a third, and I would probably buy more if I could), but I have been very 
disappointed with the software.

the good news is that the XO specific modifications are finally getting 
into the valilla kernel, and as they get there I will be able to consider 
ditching sugar/fedora and switch to other distros that will work better.

I hope that Mary Lou is making good progress with her new machines, as I 
look forward to more great choices in the future.

David Lang

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