Day 4: Up and Down

June 18, 2009

There have been a few setbacks for Andy and I over the beginning days of the projects which have caused a few problems, however this isn’t dampening our spirits!

Day 2 (2009.06.16) started with some more research and digging into the previous work done last year, Andy also suggested the idea of trying to get an easy installer for users to load an ISO with Sugar on to a pen drive in a simple easy step, however we soon found ourselves with the revelation of finding and testing Sugar On a Stick, which has been developed by the guys over at SugarLabs. The site links to an interview in Feburary 2009 which discussed the developments of Sugar on a Stick, and the reasonings to allow any system to load the Sugar Interface, following on from OLPC’s divorce from Sugar early last year.

Currently still in Beta, Sugar On a Stick is essentially what we have been looking for over the first few days in attempting to migrate the Sugar Emulator from the Live CD onto a pen drive. It works through a combination of Fedora LiveUSB creator and and ISO loaded with the Sugar Interface, allowing users to load the ISO easily from an installer package onto a pen drive. We tested the version that was available and soon found ourselves successfully booting from a pen drive into the sugar interface, which seemed to work from what we tested (including the web browser!) without any need to change settings.

This seemed to change things (and the project) a little bit, as it looked like with the changes to the OLPC and Sugar Team, things had moved on from last years project, and there was already a development team actively working in this area, so instead of competing, the next natural idea would be to find out whats currently being done, and where we could help (if at all).

All seemed well from this point on, however later that afternoon I ran into a snag which caused me some problems when I found out that the lab computers we had been working on were infected with some virus’s, go figure! With all the hot swapping of the pen drives and no warning from any of the machines default scanners, I only found out we had a problem when I got home and found that the infections apparently run hidden auto scripts to infect any drives on a system, and if portable, attempt to infect new host systems once they are inserted into a computer.

This has put me back a little bit, as I haven’t been able to work from home, and we needed to sort the PC’s in the Labs out too. This shouldnt have been such a big problem as I could easily reformat my machine, however it turns out all 3 places where I keep my backups were infected during the afternoon, not much luck here! Untill I can safley find a way to either remove the infections or save my data and format, things might run a little slow.

Day 3 (2009.06.17) started with attempting to sort the virus problem out, and in the mean time, trying to get in contact with some of the developers of the Sugar Labs; which actually turned out to be very successful!
Using one of the uninfected pen drives that we created Monday to boot into the safety of Ubuntu, we found the IRC Channels that the Sugar Team use and introduced ourselves!

The initial talk with the developers turned out to be very positive, with a welcoming attitude they were very excited to hear that there were some research students looking out to help.

The developers were able to help and inform Andy and I quiet alot, with recent events, whats happening at the moment, and where we could possibly help, along with also providing a range of useful links.

It transpires that the team are trying to put together and release an “Educational Fedora Spin” to coincide with an Open Source Development Conference named “POSSE” (19th July – 24th July 2009) which aims to “create a ready-to-go development environment for contributing to educational packages within the Fedora ecosystem.” In this case the development environment would be a system for the Sugar Interface, which would allow users (students alike) to easily get involved in developing for the sugar interface , which is a very exciting prospect as it is exactly what the Codex project is all about.

Reading the POSSE details also seems to be the heart of where the Codex project is coming from.
From the looks of it the developers are more than happy to use us as gunie pigs and mentor us through the testing and developing of the current builds in preparation for the conference and thereafter. At the moment I’m not entirely sure what this entails, and will need to keep in contact with them, but I’m pretty sure this is a good place for the project to be heading!

Links:

Useful Links

Entry Filed under: OLPC,SUGAR. Posted in  OLPC ,SUGAR Tags: , , , , , .



1 Comment Add your own

  • Avatar of Joss Winn   Joss Winn  |  June 18th, 2009 at 4:36 pm     

    That’s great news about the Fedora educational spin. Looks like something to really get stuck in to.

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