Tuesday, July 21, 2009

The first OLPC laptop in Morocco, but certainly not the last...

Back in July I received my XO-1 laptop for my application for the contributors program.Basically it's away to encourage people to contribute innovative ideas to the project, and to experiment with the laptop hardware.
  1. you write a proposal describing you project in detail.
  2. every week, a public meeting is held on IRC that discuss the project from different perspective (is it educational?, how?, how many laptops are needed?... )
  3. if the project is accepted, the laptop will be shipped within 2 weeks through DHL.
  4. for my case it took over one month to arrive to Morocco, but the good thing is that I could track my package shipment and know exactly the date of it's arrival.
  5. even that the laptop as been given to me for free, I had to pay the clearance it was about 300 DH (about $45), and it can be even more than the price of the laptop depending on countries.
Neddless to say that I couldn't sleep that night from joy, I started to play and explore it like a little child, and started to read everything I could about it specially the official wiki that is a very interesting ressource.

My project:
The idea of my project is to explore the possibility of running 3D games in an educational context.Of course the laptop don't even have 3D hardware and very limited in possibility, so using OpenGL based application is out of the question.
So I turned to using Quake 1 engine, one of the first 3D FPS games (10 years old game) and as I expected it run at a good speed on the laptop hardware.
but of course there is no way to play violent shooter game in a laptop made for children, my innovative idea was to transforme the game into a non violent one and use it in an educational context, in an new genre of games called serious games or edutainement: games that their aim is not only to entertain but also to have an educational value.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Berber language support on the OLPC XO-1 laptop

Berber language

Total Speakers


Usage By Country
Home Speakers: Algeria, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Tunisia

It is spoken by over 3 million people and is a major variety of Berber, belonging to the Afro-Asiatic (Hamito-Semitic) language family. Tamazight is the only language spoken by 40% of the Berber people living in Morocco.

How to install Amazigh fonts:
first launch the Terminal activityand type:

sudo yum install ttf-dejavu

Adding keyboard switching support:
launch the Terminal activityand type:

sudo nano

and edit the file like this:

now just restart the the graphical system (xorg) by pressing in the same time crtrl+alt+return.
and to switch then just press the division/multiplication sign key to change from English, Arabic
Amazigh keyboard.
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