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(Sugar users are learners.)

Learner applications in Sugar are called Activities. They are software packages that automatically save your work—producing specific instances of the Activity that can be resumed at a later time. A specific Activity instance is a Journal event (see this discussion of The Notion of "Keeping"). Many Activities support learner collaboration, where multiple learners may be invited to join a collective Activity session.

Please see the Sugar Activity Library for a nearly complete list of activities which are available for Sugar.


The Activity Team's Activity Team/FAQ has many developer-oriented questions, but Sugar Learners should post their general Activity-related questions to the team at this page. Questions about a specific Activity should be posted on the discussion page for that Activity available below.


Please see the Activity Team for developer information.


Please see the Activity Test-table page for tester information.

Native Sugar Activities

See Category:Activities for wiki pages of actual activities.

Below is a list of activity developer pages.

Running GNU/Linux Applications Under Sugar

There are two ways to run GNU/Linux applications as Activities under Sugar (meaning you don't need to use Terminal to load them):

  • Sugar Coating - Making Linux apps run under Sugar, but not modifying them to take advantage of Sugar's collaborative capabilities
  • Sugarizing - A fully integrated Linux application, re-engineered to take advantage of Sugar's advanced collaboration abilities
    See these instructions: How to sugarize an application: [1]

Sugar Coating Activities

To run Linux apps under Sugar (i.e., making them to run in the Sugar interface, without the collaboration and other Sugar integration programmed into them), read these instructions on Running Linux Applications Under Sugar.

In the future, we hope that Sugar will be able to run Linux applications natively without these steps.

Sugarizing Activities

See Activity Team for information on porting regular applications to run as native Sugar Activities.

Useful GNU/Linux Applications

VLC Media Player

The VLC media player is a highly portable multimedia player for various audio and video formats (MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, DivX, mp3, flv, avi, ogg, ...) as well as DVDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols. It can also be used as a server to stream in unicast or multicast in IPv4 or IPv6 on a high-bandwidth network.; the VLC Player is considered to be better by some users then MPlayer because it offer more settings, options and features. There is also no need to run it from Terminal. Read Activities/VLC to learn how to install it.


SeaMonkey has inherited the successful all-in-one concept of the original Netscape Communicator and continues that product line based on the modern, cross-platform architecture provided by the Mozilla project.

  • The Internet browser at the core of the SeaMonkey suite uses the same rendering engine as its sibling Mozilla Firefox, with popular features like tabbed browsing, popup blocking, find as you type and a lot of other functionality for a smooth web experience.
  • SeaMonkey's Mail and Newsgroups client shares lots of code with Mozilla Thunderbird and features adaptive Junk mail filtering, labels and mail views, multiple accounts, S/MIME, address books with LDAP support and is ready for both private and corporate use.
  • Additonal components include an easy-to-use HTML Editor, the ChatZilla IRC chat application and web development tools like a DOM Inspector and a JavaScript debugger.
  • If that's still not enough, SeaMonkey can be extended with numerous Add-Ons that provide additional functionality and customization for a complete Internet experience.

Seamonkey can be Sugar-coated.

Midnight Commander

Midnight Commander is a text-mode file manager and visual command shell. It is easily Sugar-coated for access from the Activities panel. Screenshot You can also run it directly in Terminal. (Paper Writers)

Totem Media Player

The Totem media player is already installed in the OLPC XO-1. It is the engine that supports media on the system. Out of the box it does not support MP3 music or MPEG-4 video. A free driver can be downloaded to add MP3 compatability. A Sugar-coating can be applied to easily access the program from the Activities panel.


TuxType is a touch typing tutorial/game than can be installed on the OLPC XO-1 using the yum command. A Sugar-coating can be applied to easily access the program from the Activities panel.
TuxMath is an arcade game that helps kids practice their math facts. A Sugar-coating can be applied to easily access the program from the Activities panel.
Tux Paint is a drawing program for children ages 3 to 12. It combines an easy-to-use interface, fun sound effects, and an encouraging cartoon mascot who guides children as they use the program. A Sugar-coating can be applied to easily access the program from the Activities panel.

Logo was Seymour Papert's language from the 1960s for children, originally providing Turtle Graphics by controlling a robot turtle. There is a large literature on using Logo to teach programming to children.

Turtle Art can produce Logo output, but we do not have a Logo activity in Sugar. UCBLogo is available in many Linux distributions, and can be installed (with yum on XOs, yum or apt tools on other Linuces) and run in Terminal. The command window opens a graphic window that the user can drag around. Entering turtle graphic commands at the command line then causes graphic output in the Logo window.


J is Turing Award winner Ken Iverson's last version of APL, his language for describing computers and algorithms, designed originally for human use, not as a programming language. In order to avoid the controversy that surrounded the APL character set and keyboard layouts, J uses only ASCII. J Software, Iverson's company, put a version of J under GPL3 in March 2011. It can be installed and run from the command line. A Debian package is in preparation.

Iverson successfully used APL to teach arithmetic to first-graders on a loaned IBM 360 with Selectric printing terminals using APL typeballs. He wrote a book on teaching Arithmetic, published by APL Press but now out of print. Mokurai is preparing to add it to the Replacing Textbooks server.