[Sugar-devel] Future of Rainbow + Sugar?

Benjamin M. Schwartz bmschwar at fas.harvard.edu
Tue Feb 24 12:41:54 EST 2009

Wade Brainerd wrote:
> To me, Bitfrost was just one more lofty windmill OLPC tried to tilt because
> it seemed like an interesting challenge.  I'm not clear why Sugar needs more
> protection from rogue activities than a normal desktop environment has from
> rogue applications.
> Reinventing the desktop as a constructivist learning environment is a big
> enough task for one development team / community to swallow.  Reinventing
> security is an altogether separate cause.

They are a single, indivisible cause, and also the entire reason for the
existence of Sugar.

Many operating systems provide users with a set of powerful tools for
manipulating ideas and data.  Sugar's purpose is to add another dimension:
to encourage users to modify and share the tools themselves.  To that end,
if my friend sends me a modified copy of an activity, I must be able to
run it without fear of wrecking my system.

Users naturally want to do this.  To see what happens when the operating
system doesn't support it, just look at the wave upon wave of e-mail
viruses that plagued Windows for so many years.

Without support for safe collaborative development of this sort, Sugar has
little to recommend it over XFCE and similar gtk-based iconic user
interfaces.  We are getting there, and with the latest improvements to
view-source and Rainbow, we are beginning to have the basics in place.


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