SocialCalc on Sugar

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SocialCalc on Sugar


[edit] SocialCalc on Sugar

SocialCalc is a spreadsheet activity developed in JavaScript for functioning in the Sugar environment, OLPC’s software paradigm. The Javascript code was initially coded by Dan Bricklin of Software Garden Inc., for Socialtext Inc. The OLPC part of the project was started by Manusheel Gupta, Managing Director of SEETA (Software for Education, Entertainment and Training Activities) with friends, K.S. Preeti, community friend of SEETA and alumnus from Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology, University of Delhi and Luke Closs from Socialtext Inc. under the able guidance from Walter Bender, Oversight Board Member at Sugar Labs. The OLPC part of the project is presently coordinated by Manusheel Gupta, Managing Director of SEETA and Vijit Singh, Software Engineer, Products and Services at SEETA.

[edit] Features and Design Goals

The main idea of the Spreadsheet activity for the Sugar environment is to include features that would enable children to make easy use of the typical features of Spreadsheet activities such as Organization, Tabulation, Graphing and simple Calculations. The main features of this spreadsheet activity are:

1. Tabulation: The main screen of the SocialCalc showcases the tabulation features of this activity. It enables the user to enter data in table format, edit the data using the various edit features such as Cut, Copy, Paste, Fill columns, Format Painter, Cell mergers, Allignment of texts, Selection of borders, et al. This gives the user immense independence in choosing the look for the table data.

2. Organisation: The tabular matter can be organised in several forms. The calls can be formatted according to borders, colors, alignment, etc. The format of the data can be of various types such as numbers, text (preceded by a "'" if necessary to distinguish it from numbers), dates (e.g., "1/2/3"), dollars ("$1,234.50"), time ("3:45"), numbers with fractions ("1 1/2"), and "true", "false", and "#N/A". A value's type determines its displayed format if there is no explicit numeric format set for a cell. The program supports a wide variety of formats (including other currencies) through its custom format functionality. The activity also facilitates sorting of numeric data. Comments to increase ease of understanding of data, Names to access data in different modalities, Clipboard function to load and save data are some of the other features which make the activity useful.

3. Graphing: In any data related activity, analysis of data holds a very significant place. Graphs are a very useful and visual way of analysis of numeric data. SocialCalc supports graphic features. Any number of data can be selected and represented in the form of Histograms.

4. Calculations: Various mathematical calculations and modifications are possible on the cell data.

5. Collaboration: Sharing of data over the network and multi-user editing. SocialCalc on Sugar is the first spreadsheet that supports collaboration over the mesh network. Please find the details on the implementation of Collaboration in SocialCalc here.

[edit] Guide for Programmers

K.S. Preeti has compiled a programmers' guide to encourage you to write code for SocialCalc.

[edit] Charting tools

Nicholas Doiron has written an interesting guide on using charting tools. Nick developed the charting tools for SocialCalc.

[edit] Localization

Vijit Singh has documented a guide here to help understand the development of localization infrastructure of SocialCalc, and its localization to a number of languages.

[edit] Interoperability

  • Mahesh Chand Sharma and Vijit Singh has documented a guide here to help understand the development of interoperability feature between SocialCalc on Sugar and Excel (.xls format only).
  • Vijit Singh has documented a guide here to help understand the development of interoperability feature between SocialCalc on Sugar and Lotus Notes (.wk3 and .wk4 format).

Notes on using XOCOM package for engineering interoperability between SocialCalc and other popular spreadsheets formats.

[edit] Features and Activities in Progress

  1. Vijit Singh is developing the feature to share SocialCalc activity over the mesh network under the guidance of Manusheel Gupta.
  2. Swarandeep Singh is writing a research paper on using SocialCalc activity for implementing Microfinance in rural areas.
  3. Audrey Tang is working on developing the multi-user editing, via visualizing peer's e-cells with colored borders.

[edit] Notes from the Field

Gardner Pilot Academy

[edit] Ideas and Feedback

We look forward to learning your feedback and ideas. Please post them here.

[edit] Downloads

Please download the latest activity bundle and source code of SocialCalc on Sugar from here.