OLPC:News/2008/Week 7

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^ Overview

The wiki community passes a tipping point : self reporting, 500 edits in a day
    The first 'zine comes out, with work in 4 languages
    Community meetings self-assembling : Olin Hackathon, Health Jam, Game sprints
Dirakx and sebastian start organizing a latin-am support group
    #pootle becomes a general localization channel again

open house : friday 1600 EST |  sunday 1400 EST/1900 UTC
testing : thursday 1600 EST

Specs and guidelines

  • A community news exemplar : Weekly zine/0
  • Last week's Week in Review got some in-kind feedback from Mel.
  • Early design discussions:
    • Bundle and Share activities (one or both may be built deeply into sugar, so that you can first bundle something, then drag it onto an XO in your mesh view; or enter a 'bundling' context from within any other view).


EDC       Feb 13-16,     Boston
GDC       Feb 18-22,     SF
SXSW      Mar  ?-?,      Austin
AIA       May 15-17      Boston
iCommons  Jul 29-Aug 1,  Sapporo
Wikimania Jul 17-19,     Alexandria

x Synergies

opportunities, people, engagements

Groups and projects

Peter Levy is visiting Boston this week; at OLPC for a couple of afternoons. We are discussing when to schedule a content partner meeting around late March. we are moving ahead with a joint effort in India, with Manu's Curriki group and the Hindi localization of their site. updates Tuesday afternoon
Todo: Implement an interface to "find XO materials" or "upload XO materials" without having to choose a specific group or learn everything about becoming a Curriki member.
Google Gears
Othman L. and Ben Lisb. at Google are looking into embedding Google Gears into MediaWiki. Thursday we're to dicsuss how to do this cleanly, along with Zvi B. who has made his own stab at optimizing offline wiki caching; and how we could make GG available to Browse.
They are most interestd in finding ways to make Gears part of our base install; and a default customizable browser for wiki content.
Todo: Scope out the impact (size on disk, maintenance work, performance, security) of adding Gears support to Browse; test Gears as frontend to MikMik.

In the field

Kliptown, South Africa
Peter Johannsen and Whitney Hunter-Thomson are helping organize the delivery of 100 XOs to children in Kliptown, via the Kliptown Youth Program and one of its directors, Thulani Madondo. They are visiting one day this week in preparation of W.H-T. travelling to Joburg. Needed: local community members there to make the program a wild success.
Whitney H-T visited Friday morning, explained that KYP is organized by a committee of 20 alums, who have been working with 4-8 XOs so far and have their own ideas of how to use the shipment coming their way. She heads out to S.A. on Tuesday morning to prepare the ground.
See the list of 16 S.A. texts now available, below. Also, M. Mulcahy suggests this may be the start of a trial in schools elsewhere, perhaps one slated for Quality Improvement and Development Strategy for Upliftment (QIDS UP). cf. [my] email of Jan 17.
NTS: we need to make youtube embedding work better on the wiki --sj


DC metro
Jonathan Blocksom (of golly gee fame) and Mike Lee have been helping organize the local DC meetup groups. Justin Thorp there just finished his work for the World Digital Library, and is back to making nifty Web 2.0 widgets. Todo: reconnect with the WDL team. (NB: some very active wiki contributors live in the area as well.)
Olin Hackathon
Olin is hosting its second OLPC jam this weekend, focusing more on local student involvement, coding, and curation for the CC LiveContent DVD (see below). Nikki Lee and the 20-person Olin chapter are organizing the event.
With help from Jamil M, we're hoping to help connect XO groups with game developers at GDC next week. OLPCers in the vicinity will include: Kent Quirk, Zvi B, Jesper T; and the SF LUG (including user:scorche, user:mokurai, &c.)


  • Juan Gomez <jgomez@...pe>, the national iEARN coordinator for Peru, was introduced by the international coordinator, Ed Gragert. Mr. Gomez has offered to help however possible in connecting Peruvian schools with iEARN's international collaborative class projects.

· Artefacts

projects, events, news, materials

  • LiveContent DVD: Sethwoodworth, Asheesh Laroia, and a growing number of contributors are working on adding books and media to a LiveDVD of freely licensed content (based on Fedora 8), which Creative Commons is mastering and helping distribute over the coming 2-3 weeks.
  • New sound collections : 65 professionally curated sets of sound samples from Dr. B.
  • BigUniverse : 2 new publishers interested in making their elegantly laid-out books available to all XO users; need to discuss licensing and use. Timeline: a press statement in time for BU's upcoming launch.


  • Videos of XO users in action : Nortel LearnIT videos explaining how to get involved with OLPC from ffm x2
  • Flash of XO in use, designed by the xoexperience crew -- they are waiting for final approval and sound/animation review (including a 'proper' animation of our logo) before releasing anything for public consumption. Tom Fulp wants to be first to know.


  • 15 English texts from S.Africa are now available (here uploaded in low resolution), but without explicit license release. We need a texts repository that checks license releases the way Jamendo and Kaltura do for media.
Xhosa Girls.pdf   562K
Thandeka's Dream.pdf  560K
Best Friends.pdf  620K 
Pushkin.pdf  675K
Motorcycle Wish.pdf  634K
Nono the River Queen.pdf  574K
Everybody Likes Bread.pdf  552K
Trip to Tsumkwe.pdf  642K
Marula and Watermelon.pdf  678K
Dear 1.pdf  613K
Turn It Down.pdf  705K
Stay Away f-t Settlement.pdf  646K
Granny to the Rescue.pdf  540K
Grandma's Special Secret.pdf  612K
Really Grandpa.pdf   660K

= Fundament

status, deadlines, assumptions, processes

  • Kliptown plans: we should have details from them by mid-week.
  • Wiki policies: we're building out a framework for them

Static libraries

  • Asheesh Laroia, Seth W and tvol are working on a CC DVD of ~8G of freely licensed works, being finalized within two weeks. We are working together to make the selection great. Under discussion: improving future curator selection, coordinating with eGranary site-collections, and providing multiple views of available material.

Design decisions

+ Priorities

milestones, sequences, first and next

Data redesign

  • For how we process and share data, see the Category:DatastoreRedesign that Marco and Tomeu are working on.
  • Publishing content : Bundle and Share activities, to create bundles and to share one's published journal elements with others, respectively.
  • Bundling : We want to test the sharing of orchestras. We want to get them out as library bundles, and as a way to use the audio in other activities : as first example of how this works more generally. (dr. b, sj, cjb, mstone)
    Todo: mstone/cjb to test that when a .csd (csound orchestra and metadata) is downloaded to the journal, it can be 'cut and pasted' into Pippy, for instance, to load the orchestra there.

Data collections

  • Sound sample usage : We want customers for our custom orchestras. (via the above)
    Todo: Dr. B to prepare a bundle to share .csd files and material around it (index.html, .csd file[s] which download to the Journal, related chapters and tutorials (html, linked to)


Wikireaders : MikMik server-based use cases and milestones.

  • Todo: synchronize development with CK12 / Murugan P and mako, when on the same coast.

Content customization

  • Easing customization of disk images by updating via USB : this has received a lot of attention recently; it helps update a bunch of machines quickly and reliably -- once a customization has started, it is very likely to finish in a known short period of time. With larger custom additions this is hard over the network.

Gatherings and events

  • Content partner workshop: Under discussion is a collaborative workshop ~ late Mar, early Apr, where partners bring devs and designers, to work with our design team to figure out how to make a) great interfaces for computer-novice educators, which is often closest to their existing interfaces, and b) great interfaces for children (browsing, sharing). We've been focused on a single interface here for core XO interactions, but a variety, with separate efforts at major potential content partners, is useful.
    Other groups to get involved : IA (via Alexis and Aaron), WDL (see above, via John vO and Peter K), BigU (via Anil) EFK (via AJ vdV), ccLearn (via AB)
    Topical attendees (virtual whiteboard?) -- music: Jamendo/OpenMuse open-license search: Jon Phillips, Chris Waterguy, PM

o Reflection

review, updates, analysis, feedback

  • Biweekly meetings : Friday and Sunday. Community collaboration on (this) week-in-review and related teamwiki WIR
  • Daily broadcasting : daily Did you know? email, notes.
  • Feedback requested : on zine deadlines, educators' workshop this week. Should there be an explicit feedback thread every so often on major lists / AOAQ / here?

Please keep sharing your own versions of a day/week/fortnight in review. Some feedback from last week : User:Mchua/Weekly_updates/20080216