Archive for September, 2008

Join Ubuntu South Africa!

We’re now using Launchpad for membership of Ubuntu South Africa, so please join the team at – even if you’re on the mailing list. The Launchpad team will give us more visibility.

If you are new to Launchpad, you’ll get the following benefits from registering:

  • Being able to log bug reports and comment on them
  • Being able to ask support questions and provide answers
  • Being able to translate Ubuntu, and other open source projects
  • (many other things!)
  • And now… membership of Ubuntu-ZA!

Ubuwiki Live released to mark Software Freedom Day

David Robert Lewis, one of the ubuntu-za crowd, announced this today:

Ubuwiki Live, a digest of free content specially formatted for Ubuntu, has been released to mark Software Freedom Day. What is unique about the Internet bundle available from, is that it exists entirely within a self-contained XHTML file. The application is the result of work carried out by the Wiki on a Stick (WoaS) project in conjunction with Indlovu, a South African Intermediate Technology initiative. As the person responsible, I can say I am quite pleased with the result and hopefully similar such offerings will be on the way to enliven the Ubuntu experience. However,  I’ve probably destroyed Windows in the process and life is never going to be the same.

Download it at:

OLPC in the eyes of a two year old

My two year old’s response whenever he gets a chance to bang on one of my XOs:

“Make a Doggy noise!”

This is a reference to TamTam, a set of musical activities which can play back samples including various animal noises, at different pitches (and also be used for music composition and performance, by the way…)

My four year old’s favourite activity is “typing” in Write, where she has very particular requirements: the font must be sans serif, large and pink, and while she occasionally types “momy” and “dady” or her name, she’s usually content to type screenfuls of the first letter of her name. She also loves typing random “words” into Speak with hilarious results.

Bash tip: $CDPATH

I heard about bash’s $CDPATH recently and it is an awesome productivity tip. Enjoy!

OLPC South Africa at INSITE conference

I was offered a stand for OLPC by SITA (the State IT Agency) at INSITE (The International Science, Innovation and Technology Exhibition) in Johannesburg as part of their Software Freedom Day celebration called Open Source for Business.

Lungi Siqebengu, Neo Masilo and Sipho Dladla joined me in running the stand on 17 September. Lungi is a long time contributor to olpc-za. Neo’s been the IT guy supporting the XO deployment at Kliptown Youth Project and has given a lot of support to One Here One There‘s deployment in Limpopo. Sipho is one of the youth at Kliptown who received an XO in that deployment, so he was able to share personally what the OLPC project has meant to him.

Lungi, Sipho, Morgan, Neo

Lungi, Sipho, Morgan, Neo

We had a bunch of XOs, solar panels and an active antenna on show and did many demos with the XOs. The most common question was “Where can I get one?” We had interest from educators, who asked how they can get XOs to their schools, as well as people interested in funding deployments or helping to raise funds. We also had children who came to play…

The children needed no explanation

The children needed no explanation

Neo had a lot of pictures of the recent deployment in Limpopo, so it was great to explain how OLPC is deploying 55000 laptops every month to deployments around the globe but also show the XOs in use in South Africa.

Neo giving a demo

Neo giving a demo

We directed people wanting to get involved to OLPC South Africa which gives contact and mailing list information.

Ubuntu-ZA leadership change

On Monday Craig Adams stepped down as co-leader of the Ubuntu-ZA
LoCoTeam, as he has had no time to contribute in recent months.

After a long conversation with Jonathan Carter on Tuesday night I’m very
happy to announce that Jonathan will be the new co-leader. For those
of you who don’t know him, Jonathan is a long time contributor to
Ubuntu, specifically Edubuntu where he was the first project webmaster
and community contact. He is an Ubuntu member, and has been involved
with local projects including Skubuntu and the tuxLabs derivative
distro. Jonathan has worked for the Shuttleworth Foundation,
Inkululeko and Impi Linux.