Planet Sugar

Planet Sugar is a collection of personal blogs by Sugar Labs contributors. Sugar Labs is a world-wide organization of passionate people working together to solve the same problem: giving everyone an opportunity to learn to learn. Our community members write about what excites them about learning, Sugar, and the Sugar community. In the spirit of free software, we share and criticize—that is how we learn and improve and encourage participation by newcomers. Enjoy and join the conversation.

March 04, 2015

Somos Azucar

Resumen de actividades Laboratorios Azúcar March 4th

Este es el resumen de actividad para la comunidad Laboratorios Azúcar.

Éste se compone de una agregación de fuentes como nuestro gestor de tareas, Wiki, y blogs.

Puedes publicar un comentario o participar de diferentes formas.

Si tienes una noticia o una fuente que deberíamos incluir (como un blog, etc), avísanos a todos(arroba)

Hubo 2 eventos esta semana.

blog (feed #5)
generic (feed #3)

by operador del sitio at March 04, 2015 07:47 AM

February 26, 2015

OLPC fun in Bhagmalpur, India

Bossa Nova in Banaras

In my previous post, I had written about unencumbered codecs that ship on the OLPC XO, versus the popular demand for video in MP4 container (usually H.264 video). This post has a strange twist with another container: WebM.

WebM is a container put forth by Google. They also proceeded to embed the codec support within Chromium/Chrome. Firefox supports it natively as well. So, videos in WebM will play in Chromium/Chrome and Firefox without a plug-in.

When I travel, I download my favorite tunes from YouTube by using the “FlashGot” plugin. I prefer to download these in WebM (the irony!). Perhaps I am violating some “Terms of Service” somewhere, but that’s a rant for another day.

After my Bhagmalpur visit in Jan 2015, I headed back to Hyderabad. I took a train from Shahganj to Varanasi (aka Banaras) and then after a short stop, I was scheduled to take a flight out of the Varanasi airport in Babatpur (rural Banaras). As fate would have it, or rather as Indigo airlines would have it, their pilot wasn’t experienced enough to land the aircraft in the fog, and so, we had no return aircraft. I was stranded at Varanasi airport with no way to take another flight. Long story short, I ended up spending the night at the airport (usually a No No, but we had special permission!) along with two other travelers. They turned out to be visitors from Brazil and Italy. We had a great conversation that evening and the next day, hanging out at a small airport, eating stale cheese sandwiches. I got reminded of the Langoliers!

Waiting for the Langoliers at Varanasi airport!

Waiting for the Langoliers at Varanasi airport!

Towards the afternoon, I recalled that I had a copy of some “Bossa Nova” tunes downloaded in WebM format. What luck! Here were two people who spoke [Brazilian] Portuguese, stranded in the thick of rural India, and I had “Desafinado” and “Girl from Ipanema” on my laptop! We sat down and listened to a somewhat strange rendition of “Desafinado” by

1) Nova Music LA and

2)  an interesting version of Girl (actually Boy) from Ipanema by Dionne Warwick and Sacha Distel

(with appropriate apologies to Vinícius de Moraes, Antônio Carlos Jobim and João Gilberto).

Such great coincidence, or perhaps I’m just cool like that :-) Shortly after that, we thankfully got onto our respective flights and headed our different ways. After keeping in touch with my new friends, it turns out they are biodiversity researchers. I hope they’ll come visit us in California to see the Redwoods for themselves! I hope the Langoliers will enjoy the Bossa Nova when they get to the Varanasi airport ;-)

<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" frameborder="0" height="312" src=";rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" type="text/html" width="500"></iframe>


<iframe allowfullscreen="true" class="youtube-player" frameborder="0" height="312" src=";rel=1&amp;fs=1&amp;showsearch=0&amp;showinfo=1&amp;iv_load_policy=1&amp;wmode=transparent" type="text/html" width="500"></iframe>


Desafinado on the OLPC XO-4 in HTML5

Desafinado on the OLPC XO-4 playing natively on YouTube in HTML5

by sv3rma at February 26, 2015 02:39 AM

February 25, 2015

Somos Azucar

Resumen de actividades Laboratorios Azúcar February 25th

Este es el resumen de actividad para la comunidad Laboratorios Azúcar.

Éste se compone de una agregación de fuentes como nuestro gestor de tareas, Wiki, y blogs.

Puedes publicar un comentario o participar de diferentes formas.

Si tienes una noticia o una fuente que deberíamos incluir (como un blog, etc), avísanos a todos(arroba)

Hubo 2 eventos esta semana.

generic (feed #3)
generic (feed #3)

by operador del sitio at February 25, 2015 07:48 AM

February 17, 2015

OLE Nepal

While deploying XO laptops in the far west

I was quite excited from early on. Our team of two (Basanta Dai and myself) were heading towards far-west Nepal on January 12th. It was my first visit to far-west – Bajhang to be specific, and my first experiences of deploying XO (E-paati) laptops. I had my bags ready with necessary stuffs for two weeks [...]

by Bishnu at February 17, 2015 07:40 AM

February 13, 2015

Walter Bender

Sugar Digest 2015-02-12

Sugar Digest

1. A few weeks ago there was a guest op-ed piece, “Can students have too much tech?”, in the NY Times arguing among other things that Internet access was undermining programs like One Laptop per Child. I found it surprising that Susan Pinker would cite One Laptop per Child as the principle example of the children using computers to chat and play games on the Internet (which she soundly criticized), since almost none of the children who received laptop computers through OLPC programs have ready access to the Internet (at school or at home).  The exception of course being Uruguay, where every child has both a laptop and Internet access. Indeed, as a 2010 survey showed, the children in Uruguay play games – they are children after all – but they also use email, search for information, chat (also known as reading and writing), make music, artwork, and videos, program, and, in general, use the computer as a tool for problem solving. Contrary to the assertion that the program is “drive-by” education, a continuing effort is put into teacher training, community support, and outreach.

That said, some people associated with OLPC —  including my former colleague Mr. Negroponte — are outspoken advocates for solutions that mitigate the need for teachers in elementary education. The X Prize for Education is designed around that approach and further requires that any proposed solutions be Android-tablet based. Not to say that it may be possible to engineer such a solution, to constrain the contest to an unproven pedagogical framework seems ill-advised. (Many tablet-based solutions have begun to distribute physical keyboards in acknowledgment that no one serious about writing or programming works exclusively with an on-screen keyboard. And while it is theoretically possible to exercise Software Freedoms on an Android tablet, in practice it is still well beyond most of us.) Meanwhile, here at Sugar Labs, we encourage open collaboration among students, teachers, and our community.

2. Martin Abente, our Sugar Release Manager, is pleased to announce the release of Sugar (sucrose) 0.104.0. This release includes new features and a multitude of bug fixes from Google Code-In and Summer of Code students, deployments and community members.

We are compiling detailed release notes at 0.104/Notes.

Thanks to everyone who contributed to this release and special thanks to Martin for shepherding the process.

3. Sugar Labs is applying to Google Summer of Code (GSoC) 2015. The application to Google has been submitted and we are in the process of building the associated wiki pages Summer_of_Code/2015. We often use GSoC as a way of exploring new ideas and future directions; for example, last summer we had projects on extending Turtle Blocks into three-dimensions and porting Sugar to Python 3, among others. This year we are going to take a more focused approach, concentrating on fleshing out and making more robust the Javascript support within Sugar. Sample projects will be added to the wiki over the next few days. We can always use more project ideas (please add them to the wiki) and more mentors (if you are interested, please contact me over the next few weeks).

In the community

4. Tony Anderson reports that he has finally has most of the Project Bernie website completed. This website shows what content is available on the School Server. (The School Server is a repository of content and services for Sugar deployments.) Tony reports that there are about 200 Sugar activities available to be installed from the school server; digital textbooks from Siyavula, and courses on Python, Web technology, and the Command Line Interpreter (Terminal activity).

Tech Talk

5. Peter Robinson, who has been coordinating the Sugar on a Stick releases (most recently for Fedora 21 [x86_64], [i686]) is looking for help coordinating testing and general community communications and facilitation. Peter is a great mentor, so it would be a nice opportunity for someone(s) to both contribute to the project and to learn more about packaging. Please contact Peter (pbrobinson AT gmail DOT com) if you are interested.

Sugar Labs

6. Please visit our planet.

by Walter Bender at February 13, 2015 03:09 PM

February 05, 2015

OLE Nepal

From field assistant to a programmer

Transition must have been boring!! Most of you must be guessing the above statement by the title of my blog. But, I am here to surprise you all. As a passionate explorer, I am hooked with the anxiety and the butterfly effect I get when setting out for a journey. The feeling of a vicious [...]

by Sabrina at February 05, 2015 09:38 AM

February 03, 2015

Walter Bender

Sugar Digest 2015-02-03

Sugar Digest

1. Congratulations to Ignacio Rodríguez and Sam Parkinson, the grand-prize winners from Sugar Labs in Google Code-in. Our finalists are Cristian Garcia,
Daksh Shah, and Jae Eun (Jasmine) Park.

All five did great work, fixing bugs, writing documentation, and taking us to new places.

2. Since the contest finished, Ignacio and Sam have continued to contribute patches almost daily to Turtle Blocks JS. Jasmine has written some beginner guides (See TurtleBlocksIntroductoryManual.pdf] and TurtleBlocksAdvancedBlocksManual.pdf). If you haven’t checked it out, please give it a try (feedback most welcome).

Sugar Labs

3. Please visit our planet.

by Walter Bender at February 03, 2015 08:22 PM

January 31, 2015

OLPC fun in Bhagmalpur, India

To Ogg or not to Ogg, that is the question

In this recent trip to Bhagmalpur, Anish Mangal and I discovered something interesting. We’ve strived hard to keep the content available through unencumbered formats such as Ogg Vorbis for audio and Ogg Theora for video. Unsurprisingly, the OLPC XO laptop supports these out of the box, but will not run MPEG 4 videos.

Some kids were upset. How would they watch Shah Rukh Khan on their XOs? These kids go to a repair shop nearby and get videos copied over to a USB stick for a small sum of money. However, the videos are in MP4, and they don’t play on the XO.

Yet, we found a Shah Rukh Khan song number on a XO. How did that happen? Did they install the MP4 codec on the laptop? Some conversations later, we found out. They first figured out that the TED videos that do play on the XO are in OGV format. Next, they asked the guy at the shop to convert the Shah Rukh Khan MP4 to OGV. That’s it. Simple as a samosa. Now Shah Rukh Khan lives in OGV! Richard M. Stallman and Shah Rukh Khan are happy together in some universe :-)



by sv3rma at January 31, 2015 04:49 AM

January 03, 2015

Sugar Labs Argentina

2014 at work

Time to do a balance, at least related to the work I did in the year.
As I found difficult remember all I did in the year, and we moved to GitHub,did a few scripts and used the statistics provided by the site.

First, a disclaimer. Measure work in commits as any other way of measure,have a very relative value. Different work have difficult than can't be compared. In my case, work in activities usually is much easier and fast than work in the toolkit or Sugar. At times reviews and testing the work of other takes a lot of time, and so. But these are the numbers I have, then, let's play with that.

This is a distribution of the commits in the different repositories I maintain:

Of course, many hackers contributed to these projects. From the logs I can find to: Aneesh Dogra, Cristian García,Daksh Shah,gauravp94, Goutam, Guillermo Trinidad,Ignacio Rodríguez, James Cameron, Martin Abente Lahaye, Sai Vineet, Sam Parkinson and Sebastian Silva. Paul Cotton provided improved designs for many activities.

My Open Source Report Card say I am one of the 8% most active Python users... I suppose that is pretty good, but more than nothing, could be because I have the fortune of do all my work in the open.

This year, I released a version of art4apps module, and new versions of Develop, Domino, Finance, FotoToon, Help, ImageViewer, Log, Maze, Memorize, Poll and Read. Many improvements in these activities were developed by students participating in Google Summer of Code and Google Code In contests.

I was lucky to of participate in the Young Hackers Summit in Montevideo, and travel to San Francisco to represent SugarLabs in the Google CodeIn Summit with the contest winners Ignacio Rodríguez and  Jorge Gomez.

Finally, I am happy to note we organized with the help of Manuel Quiñones and Martin Abente the first SugarLabs Backgrounds Contest and that backgrounds will be available in the next version of Sugar.

by Gonzalo Odiard ( at January 03, 2015 06:52 AM

December 10, 2014

Fargo XO / Sugar Labs NDSU

The Troubling Optics Behind the President Learning to Code : Stager-to-Go

The Troubling Optics Behind the President Learning to Code : Stager-to-Go.

I was just telling a friend that I hate getting sucked in by and Code Hour and all the program or be programmed rhetoric.  Yet I keep getting sucked in.

After reading this, I will be stronger.

by kab13 at December 10, 2014 10:00 PM

November 15, 2014

OLPC San Francisco blogs

OLPC San Francisco Community Summit 2014 - Videos

For those who were wondering about the summit videos, those are automatically archived and posted to YouTube via Google HangoutsOnAir. Very easy to manage and process.


by sverma at November 15, 2014 06:55 PM

November 09, 2014

OLPC San Francisco blogs

October 18th, 2014 Proclaimed One Laptop Per Child Day

Proclamation of OLPC DayThis year's Summit is wrapped up and behind us. Thank you all who attended in person or online. During the Summit we presented the proclamation from San Francisco's Mayor Ed Lee that Saturday October 18th, 2014 is One Laptop Per Child Day!

Our community works hard to bring child-centered education to some of the most remote places in the world. By leveraging technology, we've created an ecosystem of self-empowered learning which can reach a very broad audience. From our beloved green XOs, to inexpensive Android tablets, to what hardware lies beyond, students previously without access or with limited access to education and information now have a low power, low cost device with which to collaborate and explore.

These accomplishments do not come for free! Through years of research, hours of hard work, successes and failures we've accomplished a lot. There is still more to do, but we take a moment to pause and reflect. Let us recognize the hard work that we've all done.

The City and County of San Francisco recognizes this hard work. As presented at the Summit, Mayor Ed Lee has proclaimed Saturday October 18th, 2014 to be One Laptop Per Child Day! The proclamation reads:


WHEREAS, One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing opportunities to children in underserved communities with education and technology programs geared to help them experience success as adults in a technology-driven world; and
WHEREAS, OLPC has provided millions of children worldwide with a laptop enabling their access to education through technology and building positive identities that will also benefit the communities in which they live to advance and prosper; and
WHEREAS, OLPC is dedicated to low power, low cost, low maintenance hardware, with free and open source software, designed for collaboration and self-empowered learning; and
WHEREAS, under the exceptional leadership of One Laptop Per Child's dedicated staff and volunteers in San Francisco and beyond, the organization has provided countless opportunities to children worldwide and has improved the quality of life for those challenged with the lack of available resources in their communities; and
WHEREAS, our City commends and thanks the volunteers, staff and advocates from all over the world who are gathering in San Francisco physically and virtually for the annual OLPC Community Summit to continue growing and developing this tremendous endeavor; now
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that I, Edwin M. Lee, Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco, on the occasion of the sixth annual OLPC Community Summit, do hereby proclaim October 18th, 2014 as...
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the City and County of San Francisco to be affixed.
Edwin M. Lee

The work of this community is monumental towards bringing education and opportunities to some of the most under represented places and people of the world. Volunteers from our community, not just us here in San Francisco, not just those of us who attended in person at the Summit, but our global community. Congratulations to all of you!


by adborden at November 09, 2014 03:45 PM

October 03, 2014

Mel Chua

Unlock challenge: raise $1024 for The Ada Initiative, support women in open tech/culture, and unlock more open-licensed “programming learning styles” material!

Last year, I wrote a post asking people to donate to the Ada Initiative and support women in open technology and culture. I said:

We change the world with millions of tiny patches… our world of open technology and culture is built one patch, one line, one edit at a time — and that’s precisely why it’s powerful. It brings billions of tiny, ordinary moments together to transform the world. If we teach it for our code, we can preach it for our giving. If you’d buy me a drink, or treat an open source newcomer to dinner, send that $3-$20 to the Ada Initiative tonight. –August 30, 2013

Why do we need to do this? Well, being a woman in open technology and culture is like riding a bike on a street made for cars, where rain and dirt get kicked into your face, and you are constantly, painfully aware that if you have any sort of collision with a car… the car will win. Yes, this is happening in our world, to our friends and to our colleagues; it’s happened to me personally more times than I care to remember. The farther you are from the straight white male difficulty setting, the rougher the terrain becomes.

And quite honestly, we’re busy. I’m busy. You’re busy. This isn’t our job — we have so many other things to do. I mean, we’re all:

  • remixing music
  • playing with code
  • writing science fiction
  • co-authoring open content articles
  • redesigning user interfaces
  • <insert your favorite open technology and culture activity here>

And guess what? There are so many people who want to join us. So many people who want to help us do all this work, but don’t, because they know that work — the good work — is likely to come with a lot of really, really awful stuff, like this sampling of incidents since last year (trigger warning: EVERYTHING).

The less time women spend dealing with that stuff, the more time they have to help us with our work. And the more people will want to help us with our work. I mean, would you want to accept a job description that included the item “must put up with demeaning harassment and sexual jokes at any time, with no warning, up to 40+ hours per week”?

Making our world a good environment for all sorts of people is, in fact, our job — or at least part of it. The folks at the Ada Initiative have made supporting women in open tech/culture their entire job — supporting it, supporting people who support it, and basically being the equivalent of code maintainers… except instead of code, the patches they’re watching and pushing and nudging are about diversity, inclusion, hospitality, and just plain ol’ recognition of the dignity of human beings.

They want to support you. With better conference environments, training workshops and materials, and really awesome stickers, among many other things. (Did you know that the Ada Initiative was one of the first woman-focused tech organizations to actually say the word “feminism”?)

So please, donate and support them, so they can support you — and me, and all of us — in supporting women in open tech/culture.

Now, my own contribution is a bit… sparse, financially. I’m a grad student earning less than $800 a month, and I’m waiting for my paycheck to come in so I can contribute just a few dollars — but every little bit helps. And there’s another way I can help out: I can bribe you, dear readers, to donate.

Remember that “active vs reflective” learning styles post I wrote in August? Well, there are 3 more: sensing/intuitive, visual/verbal, and global/sequential. I’ve got them all transcribed here and ready to go. And if we reach $1024 in donations to the Ada Initiative under the Learning Styles campaign within the next week, I will release them under a creative-commons license.

What’s more: the first 3 people who donate $128 or more to this campaign and email me their receipt will get a free 1-hour Skype call with me to discuss their personal programming learning styles, and will be featured as case studies on one of those three posts (I’ll link to your website and everything).

Donate to the “learning styles” campaign for The Ada Initiative now!

by Mel at October 03, 2014 03:56 AM

September 22, 2014

Porting Sugar to Python3

GSoC 2014 - Porting to Python3 Round Up

Hello Everyone,

This is my round up post for my GSoC 2014 - Porting to Python3 Project.

I know I am almost a month late but it's better late than never i guess.
Just after the GSoC coding period was over my internet broke down and I was completely without internet for almost two weeks and just after that I got busy with my exams. My exams finished yesterday, so here I am today.

When I started the project I expected to complete it even before the deadline, but the more I got into it I realized how wrong I was. The actual changes I made were trivial Python3 syntax changes but finding where the problem was kind of difficult because of the subtle differences between Python2 and 3 due to which building the modules wouldn't completely stop but gave unexpected results. So most of my time this summer went into researching, debugging and handling multiple modules together.

So, in the beginning of the project i researched the changes that needed to be made from Python2 to Python3 then i started with porting sugar-build to Python3 which took quite some time because it was the first module. All the modules that I ported and the changes I made can be found in my previous posts.

I also researched the changes that needed to be made in telepathy-python which is now deprecated and not compatible with Python3.Basically , we would need to replace telepathy-python with gobject-introspection in sugar in order for everything to work correctly in Python3.
By the end I was able to port and build all the modules of sugar except sugar-datastore to Python3. Now all those modules are compatible with Python2 as well as Python3.

Although this is a big step in the right direction , it will still take along time to completely shift all the sugar modules to Python3.

In the end I just wanna thank the Sugarlabs for making me a part of their community and specially my mentors Walter Bender, Gonzalo Odiard and Sameer Verma for helping me with any problems that I faced.

Although I think that I could have learnt a lot more if I had a more personal and bonding interaction with any of my mentors but I still learnt a lot during this summer and I am grateful for that.
I'll also try to stay in touch with the happenings of Sugarlabs and try to contribute whenever possible.

I guess that's it for today , thanks for reading and goodbye!

by kunal arora ( at September 22, 2014 03:13 PM

September 08, 2014

Sugar Labs Argentina

Cumbre Juvenil - Montevideo, Uruguay (September 20 a 23 de 2014)

Comparto invitación al evento

Queridos colegas,
ANEP (Administración Nacional de Educación Pública) y Sugar Labs se han propuesto organizar una Cumbre Mundial Juvenil de Programadores, un lugar de encuentro entre jóvenes de distintas partes del mundo que se encuentran trabajando en el desarrollo de software. Aprovechando este espacio de encuentro, queremos convocar a líderes de programas educativos interesados en el potencial que la tecnología tienen en el aprendizaje, y el promover participación auténtica de los estudiantes en este contexto.

Quiénes deben participar:
- Jóvenes de los diferentes programas educativos, que se hayan destacado por su interés en la programación y/o que hayan realizado contribuciones concretas al desarrollo del ambiente de aprendizaje Sugar.
- Líderes de los programas, interesados en participar en una serie de reuniones estratégicas para definir el futuro del ambiente de aprendizaje Sugar.

Por qué participar en este encuentro:
- Para trabajar y aprender con jóvenes desarrolladores de Python, reconocidos internacionalmente,
- Ayudar a definir el futuro del ambiente de aprendizaje Sugar y las futuras generaciones de software para aprendizaje,
- Para conectar con expertos, convencidos del potencial de la tecnología en el desarrollo y aprendizaje de los jóvenes,
- Para fortalecer la comunidad de usuarios del ambiente de aprendizaje Sugar alrededor del mundo.

Todos los interesados en participar en este importante encuentro deben ponerse en contacto con nosotros inmediatamente. ANEP ha ofrecido financiación de gastos locales para los jóvenes que participarán en este evento.

José Miguel Garcia

Walter Bender
(Sugar Labs)

Para incribirse solo deben ingresar al siguiente formulario:

by Gonzalo Odiard ( at September 08, 2014 05:10 PM

August 30, 2014

Sugar Cordova

The Final Post

Sorry people, been a long time since the previous post. The reason being I was busy coding up the plugins and things, so never got much time to concentrate on posting side. Never mind, we are back with a whole wrap up post for all of you. Also made videos to demonstrate the concept.Hope you find it interesting.

Its been months of hard work and thought process. Days full with coding and exploring things in and out. Must say it has been a great experience working for Sugarlabs as a part of Google Summer of Code. My mentor , Lionel Laské , has a great share to that, he has been very supportive in all the adventures and trusted upon me which infact boost my motivation to work for the project. I have seen mentors forcing their students to accept their methodology and do the way they want , but the best thing I liked about this was the exploration part, where we were free to dive into the different parts of code, swim through them till we got our treasure ;-) During this exploration we faced many issues, but thanks to the support of Gonzalo and Walter who used to help us whenever we required.I use to trouble Gonzalo a lot when it came to the native part of plugins, asking him how that could be done or why it didnt work as expected. Thanks Gonzalo for your support and time without which I guess the project wouldn't have been where it is.
Things still remain, but I hope to work on it after gsoc too :-) gsoc has been just a medium to be introduced to such a lovely community and I would like to thank Google for that , for introducing such a wonderful programme which brings together the developers and students to make some magic ;-)
Talking about the project progress - it is through with the cli part and plugins like - accelerometer, camera, dialog,device, globalization and network. We hope to develop more and improve upon those which we already have. Also we aim to club this with sugarizer. I had decided to make some videos during mid of August showing the working but the week which I kept for making videos , suddenly my system crashed ( because of update from ubuntu 12.04 to 14.04) so instead of making videos, I had to debug it and bring it back to the working state.Now its up and working :-) (thankfully ! ) I made a few videos to give you all an idea of what we have tried to achieve. Please go through these ( Make sure to switch on the subtitles if not already ):

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Making a sugar activity from web app using cordovoa

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Demo of the plugins coded through the summer

Hope you find the video useful,Here is the repo link which you would require incase you decide to play around with the code<wbr></wbr>puneetgkaur/sugar-cordova

Also as the project is not completed we would be up on it and pushing more changes , so keep around ;-) 

by Puneet Kaur ( at August 30, 2014 04:45 PM

August 17, 2014

Fargo XO / Sugar Labs NDSU

Tissue Paper Reforms: Coding for Kindergartners | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice

Tissue Paper Reforms: Coding for Kindergartners | Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice.

Larry Cuban’s post provides a really nice, concise history of Logo and coding efforts.  As he notes at the end, the Papert effort can be inspiring and instructional, as it has been for our Sugar Labs effort, but we also hit a wall and have suspended the program, as Cuban would expect . : )

by kab13 at August 17, 2014 01:55 AM

August 13, 2014

Tomeu Vizoso

Dynamic scaling of the memory bus

The problem

These days there's quite good support for CPU scaling in the mainline kernel, and many ARM SoCs are making use of it already. But in modern hardware with lots of very fast external memory, running the memory bus at its maximum frequency drastically reduces the amount of time that the device can run when on battery.

A problem that many teams are finding when trying to upstream their power management code is that there's currently no way for several clock consumers to influence the frequency of the memory bus. There has been a few tries to upstream the solutions currently in vendor trees, but so far no acceptable solution has been found.

I'm helping to upstream some of the stuff in the ChromeOS tree, and this issue is currently blocking very interesting work from reaching mainline.

The past

In the vendor tree for Tegra this is addressed by creating virtual clocks that are child of the clock that wants to be influenced. Depending on the type of the virtual clock, setting its rate will influence the rate of its parent clock by setting a floor or ceiling value.

In Qualcomm's vendor tree for the Snapdragon family of SoCs, the concept of a voter clock is introduced. Drivers can vote on the rate of a given clock by "voting" through a child clock, so not that different to how Tegra does it.

Both approaches have the critical disadvantage of adding clk instances for things that aren't real clocks, thus making the API considerably more confusing for relatively little gain.

Both vendor trees have additional API for registering bandwidth needs: tegra_isomgr and msm_bus_scale. They bear quite some resemblance with each other and with pm_qos_interface, but both are tightly tied to specificities of their platforms.

The discussion was brought back to life a couple of months ago when a patch was posted for allowing the tegra-drm driver to set the frequency rate of the external memory controller based on the amount of bandwidth that was needed by the display controller for refreshing the display. Of course, that patch was rejected because there are other components that need to have a say in the frequency rate of the memory bus.

But in that discussion some kind of plan took form and I have been working on making something from it that can be merged upstream.

A possible future

There's so far two main additions to existing frameworks, with the rationale being explained further below:
  • Add per-user floor and ceiling constraints to the Common Clock Framework, so drivers can set maximum and minimum frequency rates that the clock should respect. Patchset here.
  • Add a PM_QOS_MEMORY_BANDWIDTH class to pm_qos, for drivers to register their expected bandwidth needs. Patchset here.
The idea is for the following agents to be able to influence the current frequency of the memory bus:
  • Thermal: a cooling device would call clk_set_ceiling_rate to cap the memory bus to a frequency based on the current temperature.
  • Power: a battery driver would set a ceiling in the same way, based on the remaining capacity.
  • Devfreq: a devfreq driver wrapping a power management unit such as the ACTMON on Tegra or the PPMU on Exynos would set a floor frequency based on the current load stats.
  • Cpufreq: a cpufreq driver would set a floor frequency based on the current CPU frequency.
  • Devices that can anticipate how much memory bandwidth will need (such as the display controller, the camera, multimedia codecs, an ISP, USB, etc) would register their requirements in the PM_QOS_MEMORY_BANDWIDTH class. The EMC driver would be listening for notifications and setting a floor frequency based on the aggregated bandwidth that is needed.
The impression so far is that this approach matches the needs of the Tegra and Exynos SoCs, and people working on Rockchip upstreaming are evaluating it. Others working on other SoCs are very welcome to look at it and comment, so the result is also useful to them and they can improve their power management in mainline without having to refactor things later.

by Tomeu Vizoso ( at August 13, 2014 03:36 PM

August 01, 2014

Sugar Experiments of gp94

GSoC Update #8

This week was spent mostly on writing tests for Read. The major issue we were facing is that, we couldn’t open files in Read activity using the objectchooser. So, Gonzalo sent a novel way of doing the same use case. in a different way and it worked perfectly. Here is the link of the conversation on the mailing list.

I have successfully written tests for Read and also added some helper functions in of sugar-toolkit-gtk3 that are required for writing tests for the activities.

Here is the commit of the test of the Read activity and here is the merge request/codereview for the same.

Here is the commit of the helper functions for in sugar3 and here is merge request/codereview for the same.

Next week, my focus will be work on the writing tests for imageviewer using the same approach as used in Read activity. After, the same is done and time is left then I will also continue on the work where I left off for Browse activity.

August 01, 2014 06:32 PM

July 30, 2014

Rafael Enrique Ortiz Guerrero

Tastypie filtering

Tastypie is a django restful api

Here is a little recipe to show only the last resource of eache model exposed as WS:

class RequestResource (ModelResource):
    """ Request webservice
    class Meta:
        queryset1 = Request.objects.order_by('-id')
        queryset = queryset1.all()[:1]
        resource_name = 'requestresource'
        authorization = Authorization()

Another recipe to show also a foreing key in a given resource:

class EmployeeResource (ModelResource):
    """ Employee webservice
    user = fields.ForeignKey(UserResource,'user',full=True,null=False,blank=False)

    class Meta:
        queryset = Employee.objects.all()
        resource_name = 'employeeresource'
        authorization = Authorization()

by Dirakx ( at July 30, 2014 03:24 PM