Guidance sought on collaboration techniques

Wade Brainerd wadetb at
Wed Feb 11 18:41:08 EST 2009

Hey James,
I can help you out with this if you want.

Your collaboration design sounds fine to me.  I did something similar in
Colors! where certain parts of the UI are disabled on the joining instances.

What point are you at now?  Do you need an example to get started with, or
feedback about existing code, or just ideas about which APIs to use?


On Wed, Feb 11, 2009 at 4:55 PM, James Simmons <jim.simmons at>wrote:

> Benjamin,
> I had been using two machines to develop my Activities.  One ran Xubuntu
> and used the sugar packages provided with the Sugar Live CD that someone
> made up.  These were not perfect, but it was a simpler way to set up a
> Sugar test environment than anything else available at the time.  My
> second box was running openSUSE 10.2 and I attempted to install
> Sugar-jhbuild on it with middling success.  I had both pointing to the
> Collabora server to test sharing, and what I found was the sharing
> through that server worked OK for small files (like Read Etexts used)
> but took forever for slideshows, and frequently ran out of gas in the
> middle of a transfer.  As for collaboration between two instances of
> Sugar with no jabber server between them, that never worked at all, even
> a little bit.
> As of last night both machines have Fedora 10 with the Sugar RPMs
> installed, so this should eliminate lots of problems I had in the past.
> I don't expect it to make large file transfers through the jabber server
> any faster, though.  Plus, in my opinion copying a file from one XO to
> another would be better done as a function of the Journal.  It isn't my
> idea of what real collaboration should be.  The VNC idea, while
> worthwhile, doesn't excite me either.
> As an XO user I have no use for collaboration.  I have nobody to play
> with.  I could strip the collaboration code out of both my Activities
> and have something more than adequate for my own use.  My goal is to
> create Activities that will get other kids excited about using them.  My
> idea is a modest step in that direction.  If I get that much working
> other ideas may come.
> I would like to stick with API's that are currently available for a
> couple of reasons:
> 1).  I want to use the Sugar environment in Fedora 10.  Now that I
> finally have a robust test environment I don't want to lose it.
> 2).  I want to make the Activity available to the largest number of
> users possible.
> I think telepathy might do the job for me if I just understood it
> better.  All I'm asking it to do is send some messages to a list of
> buddies and have them initiate some file transfers.  Chat is already
> doing the first part, I think, and the Read code might be persuaded to
> do the second.
> Thanks,
> James Simmons
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